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AFENIFERE AND THEIR OBSESSION WITH SHORTCUTS TO POWER By Hashim Suleiman

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Some Afenifere and Ohaneze Members in a Collaboration Meeting

Some of us who are young are deserving of mentorship so as to ensure the emergence of the leaders of tomorrow that imbibe the needed virtues for national cohesion and integration. However, the activities of some so called statesmen leaves some of us wondering how to kowtow to their shenanigans in all honesty. Some of these men are perhaps oblivious of the fact that we’re in jet age where the young people of the day are tech savvy and having access to information of events as they happen and equally possessing needed discernment to decipher.

I have been following the activities of an association called the Afenifere in Nigeria, it’s a socio- ethnic organization that was formed to protect the interests of the south west Yoruba people of Nigeria and honestly in all of the times I started paying keen attention to happenings in the Nigerian polity for my personal development, they have come off to me as people who are lazy and narcissistic about knowledge to the extent that they feel every other tribe or region of the country is inferior to them in terms of rights to belong and expression of opinions. Otherwise, how could an association be consistent with churning out demands that are undemocratic in nature.

They association is made up of individuals from the first republic and majority of whom have participated all through to the first and second terms of the current democratic dispensation. Majority of them live in high brow areas of lagos and owing large businesses and private learning institutions, I don’t want to go into how they might have amassed such wealth but their determination to ensure Nigeria seizes to exist in its current configuration leaves a lot to wonder considering that they were part of the major beneficiaries of it. It could be likened to a Hausa adage that translates ‘you eat the bread and want to tear the package of it’. This is certainly not the way to go and some of us who are coming up with a zeal to see things done differently will highlight some of these anomalies.

Just recently, the owner of the Afe Babalola University in Ado Ekiti came up to request President Buhari to not conduct the 2023 elections but rather appoint them as members of an interim government so they can decide what I don’t understand. The entire Afenifere association followed that up by requesting for a government of a national unity to midwife the emergence of a next government for the country. In all of their requests, what will always fascinate one is the mode with which they wish to form these interim arrangements, there is clear intent of the nominations to be them so they could formulate what they were not able to do when they held sway as critical members of Nigerias existence from independence till date.

They will completely act ignorant of the existence of a National Assembly when making their requests and that hurts a lot. Some of us who have under studied these processes wonder why they can’t simply sponsor candidates into the chambers and effect whatever changes they are desirous of, such makes their actions suspicious and smacks of laziness and attempt to intimidate others into accepting their shortcut methods into prominence. If such strategy had worked for them in the past , simple critical thinking should tell them it won’t fly anymore because of changed times, only a person who is opportunistic and not realistically smart will not recognize that as times change, strategies should also change.

But in all of it, I was able to deduce that the actions are not unconnected with the 2023 presidency. I had analyzed in several of the articles that it was imminent power was returning to the north as that was the only strategy left for PDP to return to power and APC would not want to give that up so they would follow suit. These elders have sensed that and instead of putting up their strategy caps to see how to counter the matter which was borne of out the north’s mastery in the game as well as a homogeneity in a large population that had been borne out of cultural and religious needs, they resort to an attempt to utilize this method that had been dangled severally and is known to fail at the first instance even by their kinsmen who are presently a part of the establishment in all of the Legislature, Executive and Judiciary. They consider it their time to serve and why would anyone who had enjoyed their time and established enough to protect their upcoming generations want to truncate such opportunity albeit selfishly for that matter.

Therefore, my candid advise to these elder statesmen as they ought to be is for them to utilize the times they have left to acquire the necessary goodwill and build the required bridges that they had not established before which could have ensured their place for a seat on the negotiation table. As it is now, the table is full with people from all the creed who are willing to damn their kinsmen as long as they are promised a slice of the cake.

Strategy wins always!

Hashim Suleiman
oneheartnaija@yahoo.com