The Nigerian nation is throbbing in earnest who will be the next occupant of the exalted presidential seat in 2023. Not thanks to the tense and restless environment created by poverty, ignorance, mistrust and unnecessary rivalry between the various ethnic components and nationalities of the country . There are plenty of candidates out there, but some are clearly and obviously more qualified for the job if the Nigerian nation is to eliminate the jinx that has plagued them for the past sixty-one years. It is in this regard that this article throws its spotlight on one of the most distinguished political colossi of our time. That is to say, Senator Bola Ahmed Tinubu. The legs of the competitors are firmly on the starting blocks and therefore, it is time to stop the anxiety and the game of waiting.
The Yoruba of southwestern Nigeria says “Eniti yio pegan Ajanaku, a so wipe“ mo ri nkan firi ”. Ti bar laughed Erin, so she wiped laughed Erin ‘. Literally meaning “It is clear that a man who claims to have seen something in a jiffy is not referring to an elephant or trying to ridicule the size of the gigantic creature.” What is evident is that Senator Bola Ahmed Tinubu has the pedigree and enviable credentials to lead this nation. You can look at man from a three-dimensional perspective. One angle is his political career, his ability to maneuver and his skillful strategies on the political spectrum of our nation. In addition to carving out a niche for himself, Bola Tinubu has stood and roamed the political landscape of the Nigerian nation like a colossus since 1999. His worst reviewer will recognize this fact, except for those who are prepared to argue against them. reasons. Then come his administrative air and dexterity, and thirdly, his clear vision of what he wants for Nigeria and his leadership qualities which make him an excellent team player among his peers.
Apart from its known NADECO activities, Tinubu has since 1999 fought and won several battles in defense of democracy. His relentless legal battle for the grant going to Lagos which was interrupted by the regime of Chief Olusegun Obasanjo will forever remain a point of reference in the annals of legal libraries in Nigeria in particular and the world at large. It is the quality of a man who does his homework before diving into the arena of contentious wrestling. His ability to develop human capital is unprecedented and there is clear empirical evidence of his mentees scattered across the country, knowing that the greatest characteristic of a leader is his ability to mentor and leave successors and plans to succeed. succession. From Vice President Yemi Osibajo to Babajide Olusola Sanwolu, Governor of Lagos State to Ogbeni Aregbesola, Interior Minister to Babatunde Raji Fashola, Minister of Works and Housing and many other enviable human resources in the six geopolitical zones of the nation. Tinubu has an almost “supernatural” ability and gift to transform human raw material into a high quality marketable product. While other politicians may be asleep, Bola Tinubu is at the table to build and design the map of the future and this is the main reason for the remarkable successes he has achieved over the past twenty-one years. .
The Bourdillon owner’s scorecard that history may not hastily forget is the Lagos project and his ability to monitor his dreams vicariously until they manifest into reality. From a near-sleepy urban dump, Tinubu went ahead and created deliberate policies that made Lagos the envy of the world. He succeeded in creating a link between the private sector and the state, an initiative that has made Lagos the most productive and dynamic economic center in the Nigerian nation.
Those who were there in 1999 will agree that Lagos was already taking the form of one of the worst urban agglomerations in the world. From a dormant economy with a big hole in its pocket, the administration of Bola Ahmed Tinubu liberalized the business environment thus allowing the private sector to invest its resources in the economy to the extent that in 2015, the product Lagos State’s gross domestic land was $ 131 billion, making it Africa’s fifth-largest economy and this accounts for between 20 and 25 percent of Nigeria’s GDP and around 46 percent of South Africa’s GDP ($ 280,367). This is more than the GDP of Morocco (104.908 billion dollars) and more than four times the GDP of Cameroon (30.810 billion dollars). This is twice the GDP of twenty African countries combined, namely; Niger ($ 7,566), Guinea ($ 6,754), Malawi ($ 5,474), Eritrea ($ 5.352), Mauritania ($ 4,714), Togo ($ 4,520), Sierra Leone ($ 4.289), Swaziland ( $ 3,430), Burundi ($ 2,742), South Sudan ($ 2,628), Liberia ($ 2,168), Djibouti ($ 1,894), Lesotho ($ 1,806), Central African Republic ($ 1,782), Cape Verde ($ 1,684 ), Seychelles ($ 1,419), Guinea Bissau ($ 1,168), Gambia ($ 0.886) and Comoros ($ 0.622). Lagos’ GDP represents approximately 5.76% of Africa’s total GDP ($ 2,273.059 billion). Today, Lagos is cited to contribute a quarter of Nigeria’s gross domestic product.
The 2023 presidential election debate and campaign will be unique as it comes at a time when the whole country is fraught with threats and counter-threats across ethnic, community and social divisions. There is nothing unusual about all of this in a plural and diverse environment that thrives on mutual suspicion and almost institutionalized disagreements and controversies. However, if the nation is to weather the storms, it has to get it right this time around. In more than six decades, we have made the wrong choice at the polls. This is because our choices are based largely on petty feelings, ethnic chauvinism, innocent reliance on lies and the blackmail mentality of the political class to which the masses naively and naively subscribe. Didn’t the Nigerian nation miss the attributes and the quality of the services that would have been provided and that would have propelled our country to the top of world leadership by such figures as Dr Nnamdi Benjamin Azikiwe and Chief Jeremiah Obafemi Awolowo? Did we appreciate the benefits that could have been derived from Aminu Kano’s Talakawa posture services? Yet we prefer to selfishly deny ourselves the best on the altar of pettiness, ethnicity, religious bigotry and weak intellectual calculations and yet we expect a country where manna will fall from the sky and an uninterrupted flow with it. a bloom of milk and honey. Of course, entry will always justify exit.
The next two years will demand a lot of responsibility if we are to overcome the challenges imposed by our usual lack of discretion over political choices. We should vote on the right.
It is in this regard that Senator Bola Ahmed Tinubu must try his luck. The nation needs his services now.
Professor Ojikutu is from the Faculty of Management Sciences at the University of Lagos.