Nigeria’s Greatest Politician, ASIWAJU Bola Ahmed TINUBU Conquers ALL odds at 65…Why he turns most germane phenomenon in African politics
*For his Resilience, Sagacity, Iconic-political diversity chased former Peoples Democratic Party out of power
*How he remains godfather of Nigerian politics, touch the lives of masses
*PLUS his Undying love for MUSIC, How he emerged a Millionaire
BY GEORGE ELIJAH OTUMU/FOREIGN BUREAU CHIEF/UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
HE’S UNARGUABLY Nigeria’s most savvy politician in modern times, endowed with native wisdom, very knowledgeable in the art of politics. Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, a two-time former governor of Lagos state fully knows the precise time to advise, speak, introduce his ‘out-of-the-world political knowledge’ aptly called ‘Awoism ideology’, being a reminder of the remarkable and brilliant politics earlier played late sage, Chief Obafemi Awolowo.
As at today, no historian or author can successfully write a chronology of Nigeria or Memoir of Africa’s most populous black nation without regularly referencing the evergreen accomplishments of this ex-Senator of the Federal Republic.
Like Moses in the good book that led the children of Isreal out of the land of Egypt into that land of Canaan flowing with ‘milk and honey,’ Tinubu led the way, had deep meditation, spent unquantified time, money, energy and used his life to vigorously campaigned for All Progressives Congress, APC during 2015 elections even when all odds were used by then ruling Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, to erect bumps, delays, confusion, distraction and frustration his ways; for his unrivaled profound knowledge in African politics, Tinubu was quick to recognize at a far distance the hindrances PDP had placed along the way. He ironically swam across the then raging tide of PDP. On a platter of gold and at the risk of his life, he single-handedly delivered Nigeria into the hands of his then main opposition party, APC. Immediately, power changed hands from PDP to APC.
As a ‘political war’ veteran, he became the National Leader of APC. Since wisdom is only given by God and not by men, Tinubu’s house in Bordillon, Ikoyi, Lagos has become a ‘mecca-of-sort’ in Nigeria where Nigerian politicians rush into regularly to consult the godfather. Since the advent of democracy in Nigeria, not ONCE has his influence waned, advise failed.
Tinubu is a multi-billionaire by all standards. A hardworking man who made his lawful millions then while serving as an auditor for auditing giant, Deloitte and Touche, made him an “instant millionaire”. He reported said recently “At Deloitte and Touche, I chose to travel more than 80 per cent of my working years there. And that is because if a staff chose to travel, he would make more money because he would get travel allowances,”
Tinubu said in a lengthy interview he granted TheNews Magazine on March 29 about his journey through life as he celebrated his 64th birthday. According to Tinubu, he was sent on an assignment to help set up a an accounting and auditing system for a joint-venture between National Oil and Aramco in Saudi Arabia but by the time he returned to the United States, he discovered that his account had been credited in millions. His exact words: “We had gone there to set up their accounting and auditing system. It was while on that service that I got my financial break. When I returned to the United States, my employers gave me a huge bonus, which instantly turned me into a millionaire.
“The bonus was $850,000, before taxes. My salaries were also being paid into the bank and I was not touching them. At the time, my salary deposits in the bank had risen to about $1.8 million.”
Asked if he was not frightened by the development, Tinubu said, “No. This is because I had a strong grasp of financial matters. I was happy. I bought a house from the money and invested the rest in the U.S. I was living well. I was living in one of the most affluent neighborhoods in the south of Chicago.” Though Tinubu stayed back working for several years in the United States after completing his degree in Chicago, also he worked in Deloitte and Touch before returning to Nigeria to serve as an accounting executive for Mobil.
Tinubu surely remembered the philosophical quotes of Jim Morrison, which states that ““Whoever controls the media, controls the mind.” Like a man with a Midas touch, he took time out to calculate how to navigate the press. Not longer, he floated a media conglomerate: National LIFE newspaper, The NATION newspaper, Television Continental, TVC and Radio Continental. As a disciplinarian, he employed some of the best journalists in Nigeria in his media empire, pay them as at when due. Unlike his contemporaries, as a publisher, not once does he interferes or intrude in the editorial activities of his media workers or ever challenged their judgment on any story for publication. Never in his virtues! His media employees all enjoy free hands to work on stories.
He has never looked back on the various leaps of success attained by his media firms, as he daily keeps thinking on latest ways to make his media establishment ‘first-above-all’ in the area of excellence journalism in Nigeria. Many were not surprised that before the advent of social media and online journalism, this humble Nigerian with over dozens of traditional chieftaincy titles in the country, as well as other parts of Africa ensured his media employees were step ahead in quick learning, adapting to Online journalism. Today, every news medium under Tinubu not only report timely and accurate news in the print, but break same online in the speed of light.
Having tirelessly worked, surely this happily married accomplished entrepreneur need some time out to unwind. This is why Tinubu never hid his love for good music, both locally and internationally.
For decades, Tinubu always host and parley renowned musician. Not long ago, Asiwaju received ‘Akon’, Senegalese born American famous musician. Same way he received Davido, a Nigerian multiple, award-wining musician that shot into limelight through his second single hit album titled ‘Dami Duro'(which translates Stop Me in English). ‘Dami Duro’ is the second single from Davido’s debut album, a song that was a big hit, peaking at number one GoldMyne’s top 10 songs of 2012 list, surpassing Iyanya’s “Kukere” and winning various awards.
This is not forgetting King Ayinde Wasiu, K1, the indisputable King of Fuji music in Nigeria. K1 is a richly gifted musician so much appreciated by Tinubu, as he ensures that all through the APC political campaign till this party won the election in the federal level and majority of the states in 2015, K1 occupied a prime position where he dished out emotional, interesting and hypothetical hit tunes from his repertoire of music. And Tinubu danced, waved brooms to the crowd and felt really fulfilled.
At 65, there is nothing Tinubu would say God has not done for him: good home, valuable political career, divine health, flourishing businesses and rest. To cap it all, it was reported that he acquired a New Bombardier Global Express XRS, a Private Jet valued at $42 Million Dollars. Even then, let’s assume he did, has he not paid his dues? Has got not bless him? “Whom God has blessed, let no one curse,” apologies to Bob Nesta Marley.
Nigerians are already saying in various groups that 2019 is a time Tinubu needs to take a close look at the Presidency, since Nigerians desire a leader who knows it all, have the passion of the people in mind, humane, solutions to myriads of problems facing the country being a technocrat and ready to assist the masses.
For the records, Tinubu first served as a senator in the short-lived third republic and later as governor of Lagos State between 1999 and 2007. As a Senator under the platform of the Social Democratic Party, SDP, Asiwaju at no time collaborate or discuss with the then military junta to scuttle the will of the people and truncate their best expectations.
Kindly join me in wishing Asiwaju, the ‘birthday boy’, a splendid and historic celebration.