By Seth Akintoye
I think Tinubu campaigners should separate campaign from propaganda! I have said this before on the Facebook platform. I cherish Tinubu: his political sagacity and tenacity of purpose, though I am not necessarily his fan. Gutter language, name calling and vituperation by his supporters will not help their principal’s cause.
Political campaign is about selling your candidate to the electorate by telling them his/her ability, competence, sagacity, track record, sincerity, genuineness of purpose, and presenting a workable manifesto that can bring the good old days back to Nigeria!
For example, I am interested in how Tinubu will bail the nation out of debts hanging on our neck like a sword of Damocles. How does he want to stop the perennial fuel importation and dubious subsidy claims that are killing the economy?
How does he want to, in a concrete way, address the annual ritual of ASUU (Academic Staff Union of Universities) strike. What programme does he have to boost our foreign reserves and stabilise the Naira. What’s his agenda for curtailing corruption,etc, etc.
These are what he should focus on.
He could hire competent and knowledgeable people to do this, not people who are out for roforofo fight, all in the name of defending Asiwaju! Nigerians are more knowledgeable now than in 2015!
Tinubu presented Buhari to us in 2015 as a Messiah, who will start effecting visible changes in six months. Behold, this is President Muhammadu Buhari’s eighth year; rather than improving, things are getting worse!
What went wrong? We want to know! How is Tinubu’s presidency going to be different from Buhari’s own, even though they are of the same APC (All Progressives Congress)? How can he gain our confidence again after Buhari’s total failure and disappointment?
These are issues the electorate are interested in now!
Buhari has imposed a lot of hardship on the people like Solomon in the Bible, who sent the people on forced labour in his selfish desire to build an empire, as Pharaoh did to Israel in Egypt. When Solomon died and it was time to appoint a new King, his son Rehoboam, a foolish and arrogant person, was asked what he would do to alleviate the yoke his father had put on them. He buckled the opportunity. Hear him: “My father made your yoke heavy, but I will add to your yoke; my father chastised you with whips, but I will chastise you with scourges”!
Of course, Rehoboam suffered the repercussion: the Kingdom was divided! To your tent oh Israel, was the people’s response!
What Nigerians want from the next President is a sure assurance that he would lighten the yoke Buhari has put on us.
We don’t want a foolish President like Rehoboam, who will add to our yoke of hunger, sickness, insecurity and suffering in the midst of plenty! If that happens in 2023, of course, to your tent oh Nigerians, will be the response. Or a Sri Lankan option, which is long overdue, but might be disastrous!
Like the biblical Solomon, I know Tinubu is wise and smart! But he should not make the blunder Solomon made by oppressing the people for his selfish gain! If he will not do it. Fine. But his campaigners should not make his task more difficult than it ought to be!
Stop abusing opponents; stop all vulgar language and vituperation; stop lying to the people; stop propaganda. Concentrate on Tinubu’s manifesto, and how it will work!
Even though the Muslim-Muslim ticket has ruffled some feathers, the way out of it is wisdom, pacification, genuine love, understanding of those concerned and planned and sustained programme of talking to them with wisdom, patience and sincerity.
It might take time!