Jagaban: What Our Saraki Must Learn From This Rare Gem By Abdullah Abdulganiy

Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, popularly known as Jagaban is one of the many political bigwigs in Nigeria that are supposedly “invincible”. Ditto to Dr Abubakar Bukola Saraki, our own Turaki of Ilorin, Omo Baba Lagbaji and Baba Adini of Ansarul Islam Society of Nigeria. Before we move on, please, can I hear you shout Sheu thrice and dedicate 10 million Papuns to this “triumpher”?

The duo had assumed control politically in both Lagos and Kwara States respectively. And ever since then, their political dynasties still remain unshakeable up till this moment. Indeed, it is a great and rare achievement and of course something to reckon with. Whether or not, they tread cunning ways in maintaining their dominance is not the concern of this text. If you have problem with that, the court of law is wide open any day, any time. The text is only pre-occupied with spotting the similarities between both of them; and by extension, presenting those lessons Baba Adini could learn from his counterpart, the Jagaban of Africa.

To set the record straight, Tinubu was elected the Governor of Lagos State in the year 1999 to 2007. Thus, he ruled twice in that capacity. He had hitherto been a Senator representing Lagos West Constituency in 1993 prior to his assumption of office as the Governor. Same thing applicable to Saraki, he was the Governor of Kwara State for 2 terms consecutively between 2003 to 2011. He also serves as the sitting Senator representing Kwara Central senatorial district. Can you now see the nexus between the duo as far as politics is concerned?

It is also noteworthy that while Asiwaju had dominated Lagos State; Saraki too had equally dominated Kwara State, with both having political influence in both states respectively. In fact, when both of them had ceased to be Governors, it is still surprising that who becomes the Governor in both states is ‘somehow’ solely defined by them. Tinubu had never supported somebody to be the Governor of Lagos State and failed. He was the brain behind Mr. Babatunde Fashola’s, his successor, assumption of power as the Governor of Lagos State. In a like manner, Akinwunmi Ambode. It is now obvious that Asiwaju will ‘barely’ support a candidate in Lagos State and fail.

Saraki also had in the recent past ‘hardly’ nominated a candidate for any political post in Kwara State and lose. His successor, Mr Ahmed Fatai was a close political crony of his; and of course, his assumption of power was not unknown to Saraki’s knowledge. Other stakeholders too are close associates of Baba Adini. This is just the tale of two political juggernauts who have proven to be indomitable in the recent past. And this is therefore just the beginning of the end!

What Saraki must learn from Tinubu?

It is now crystal clear that Tinubu and Saraki could be placed side by side in relation to their political properties. However, one must learn from the other! Saraki must learn from Tinubu. Of course, both play mature political games. But, in terms of thinking out of the box, Saraki still have to learn from Tinubu. Tinubu, as a man of many parts thinks deeply; he is business-oriented. He has myriads of establishment both within and outside Lagos. And this is what Saraki must learn from him; how to be ‘business-oriented’. This is not to say Saraki too doesn’t have business establishments but I doubt if he has one in Kwara State. You can prove me wrong and thereby render my article useless. I have been gallivanting in Ilorin for long and scarcely had I seen a business organisation carrying the name of Saraki or said to be run by him. At the time of writing this article, I was able to gather from a reliable source that he owns National Pilot Newspaper, that had been operating in a skeletal manner in the recent times with dilapidated structure. This made me doubt that the President of the Senate owns it. I don’t know if he has any other business organisation in Kwara State which he doesn’t wish to unveil to the world that he manages it. But to my little knowledge, he has none; which I think should be a common knowledge if things are not to be hidden. In the course of my parade, I only know of two dominant industries in Kwara State, which are: Tuyil pharmaceutical industry and KAMWIRE. It seems we also have some bottling companies located around Asa-dam road. Apart from those, I don’t think there exist some other large industries in Kwara State. What we see are bars, hotels, club houses and other ‘sererens’.

National leader of the All Progressives Congress, Bola Ahmed Tinubu

Tinubu manages Television Continental (TVC) situated in Lagos State, he owns The Nation newspaper – an hyper-active media outlet, Oriental Hotels to mention but a few! Which establishment is alluded to Saraki in Ilorin? Saraki must therefore learn from Tinubu to create more industries in Kwara State. It is very disheartening to hear that all the industries in Kwara State are not up to 5. And to my utmost dismay, these two states were created in the same year. We continue to shout poverty, robbery, insecurity….. Of course, these are the consequences of the scanty, meagre and limited industries and business organisations we have here in Kwara State. We have the land mass, we have able-bodied men who are ready to and can work, so what are we waiting for?

It is high time Saraki learnt from Tinubu and started to create industries that will generate employment opportunities and revenue for both Kwarans and Kwara State government respectively; instead of building ‘one hospital’ abroad or building mansions up and down abroad and as well buying exotic cars and clothing. While all these are not only ‘non-income-generating’ as well as ‘non-job-creating’; they are also tantamount to profligacy and prodigality. Instead of giving us ‘one-kind-rice’ during festive periods, create enabling environment for us to show the high level of your generosity. There is this Chinese proverb that says “You give a poor man a fish and you feed him for a day. You teach him to fish and you give him an occupation that will feed him for a lifetime.”

Tinubu is developing Lagos by generating revenue for it, helping hopeless lives and building his name and brand. I hope you listen to and stick to this my ‘one-kobo’ advice sir!

~ Abdullah Abdulganiy is a columnist for Signals NG and director of The Light Column.

Opinions expressed in this article are solely those of the writer’s and does not express the views of ALEDEH.

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