Written by Emmanuel Ogbeche

The help el-Rufa’I needs






The help el-Rufa’I needs

“This dwarf still observes the world from his own self-imposed height.”

― Dejan Stojanovic, The Sun Watches the Sun

Governor Nasir el-Rufa’I no doubt fits Stojanovic’s description. The petit overlord of Kaduna state has a disingenuous way of stirring the hornet’s nest.

Last week, the governor was at his evil best when he raised the alarm, on the eve of the postponed general election, that 66 Fulani were killed by indigenous people.

For a man that presides over a tinderbox of a state like Kaduna, one would have imagined that el-Rufa’I would have demonstrated a sense of keener circumspection, but not him.

Over the years, the former minister of the Federal Capital Territory, has shown a troubling predilection towards crisis, and many have wondered to what end.

Sometime in 2016, it was el-Rufa’I that told an incredulous country of how he has been paying foreign Fulani to halt the killings in Southern Kaduna.

As if that was not enough, he was at his inimitable best defending the horrendous murder of hundreds of Shiites and even went on to instituted charges against the sect leader, Sheik Ibraheem El-Zakzaky.

As a petrel of the north, el-Rufa’I hides behind his duplicitous intelligence to foment and ferment trouble no doubt for his own purpose.

While it maybe be somewhat true that people were killed, which by the way is not the first, the startling fact that at no time has the governor himself made the announcement of those killed, talkless of identifying the tribe or religion of the victims.

If anything, the unsettling disclosure of the governor as has been challenged by Prof. Chidi Odinkalu, a former chairman of the National Human Rights Commission, is to breed tension, discourage voters and shore up his waning popularity as a ‘defender’ of the Muslim faith and his Fulani kith and kin.

Without a doubt, el-Rufa’I with all his vaunted intelligence is a dangerous demagogue that should not have been allowed to near the corridors of power, moreso, being an active participant.

For a man that has witness so much tragedy in his immediate family to be so-cavalierly on a matter so much like a time-bomb, requires comprehensive psychiatric evaluations to remedy his delusions.


…And Yakubu sees red

There is a certain self-assurance that is delusional and situated in bloated ego. That exactly was the case with the chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu.

Until February 16, Yakubu had this carriage of infallibility. He was too self-assured whenever he spoke on what the electoral commission had put in place for the general elections.

His over-confidence had permeated to his lieutenants that they too began to wax overly boastful of how prepared there were to deliver a 100 percent electoral feat.

While some of the political class doubted the ability of the INEC to stage a hitch-free process, the commission and its hirelings so the naysayers as no-do gooders.

It was only a matter of time before Yakubu called those who doubted the arrangement of his commission saboteurs.

But time, the great reveler, the one that humbles the proud, and makes a mockery of the conceited, left Yakubu and his coterie of court jesters prostrate and whimpering last Saturday.

For hours, the INEC boss and his commissioners were locked in a long drawn meeting thinking and planning of how to face their collective shame.

It was not until 2:45am, barely 5 hours to commencement of voting, that Yakubu, with his tails between his legs, and bleary-eyed commissioners, came out to make the most painful announcement of his career, no doubt.

If the announcement at the wee hours of Saturday was painful, his briefing of stakeholders later that afternoon was torridly excruciating.

Speaker after speaker, except for those with tongue-in-cheek, excoriated him and his minnows.

So it was that Mahmood, the son of Yakubu, learnt the lesson of four years in a few hours with his eyes bleary!         


Patriotism garlands for journalists, corpers

It was President Barack Obama, the 44th president of the United States that said, “In the face of impossible odds, people who love this country can change it.”

Last Saturday, February 16, two groups of people demonstrated as they have always done, that they love Nigeria, and will if allowed, do the impossible for this country.

As the fat cats of INEC and their political collaborators deliberated over the ill-fated general elections, journalists and members of the National Youth Service Corps, NYSC, had fawned out through the length and breadth of the country to serve in one capacity or the other for love of country.

While the journalist has not just a social role but a constitutional mandate, the corper has been conscripted for very low wage with the wager of serving fatherland.

Many were to endure hostile receptions and sleep out in the cold while Mahmood Yakubu and his commissioners dithered and fumbled on the way forward.

For the journalist, it was the usual refrain of poor or no allowances. Many had to endure all manner of conditions so that Nigerians and the world will not be left out of factual information.

Indeed, you live the words of the anthem, “Arise Oh Compatriots, Nigeria call obey.’

As you toil and labour, may it be for nothing. May it yield good for our country. One day, may your toil bring good and put a cheer on your face. Amen.












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