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Saturday, 13 August 2016

Bola Tinubu Never Believed In Buhari’s Candidacy, Says One of His Lawyers, Tunji Abayomi

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A democracy rights activist and All Progressives Congress (APC) governorship aspirant in Ondo State, Dr. Tunji Abayomi, has described APC "National Leader," Bola Tinubu, as a man who frustrates the democratic aspirations of Nigerians through his dictatorial tendencies.
Abayomi, who admitted he has great admiration  for Tinubu’s contributions to the return of civil rule and his political sagacity, dropped the bombshell in a letter to the APC chieftain titled “The Tonic Of Democracy Is The Right Of The People To Choose Their Leaders,” the letter traced the history of the duo through the days of struggle for democracy under the military to the return of self-rule and Abayomi’s decision to join the Alliance for Democracy
(AD), the political platform under which Tinubu became the governor of Lagos state in 1999.
The lawyer said there are hints that Tinubu is about imposing a candidate on the APC branch of the party in Ondo state before its August 27 primaries and warned him to stop his bid to tamper with the will of the party.
According to Abayomi, some APC leaders met with Tinubu on July  31 at a meeting, he alleged, was held to ensure that the primaries will be a procession for Tinubu’s candidate rather than a free and fair contest among aspirants.
“We share the struggle for democracy which conjured regard for the independent right of our people to vote and to make leaders for themselves. So close it seems, is the relationship that as you told me you were once approached by yet another old friend, President Olusegun Obasanjo, to convince me to work for him. Then and for a long time, at least up to 2004, when I decided to join the AD, I opted to be a go-between the poor masses; poor because they were in truth betrayed by leadership and the powerful few that control the apparatus of power in our land,” Abayomi wrote.
The lawyer added that despite Tinubu’s lack of conviction in the candidature of General Muhammadu Buhari for the presidency, he accommodated his view that Buhari was the man capable of winning last year’s presidential election. Tinubu’s decision on Buhari, notwithstanding, Abayomi said the former Lagos State governor has a major failing, which has become recurrent in his politics: a disdain for popular will.
“There are, however, certain principles that I believe form elements of democratic government, which I think you often violate. Considering that you fought for democracy, I wonder why it has become normative,” wrote the lawyer.
Abayomi instantiated his allegation with his experience in 2007 when he made a bid to be governor of Ondo State, an attempt snuffed out by Tinubu’s alleged imposition of his friend, Rotimi Akeredolu on the defunct Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN).
“You invited me, I think, the only aspirant for the purpose, to appeal for my support and understanding for your decision. The first question I asked then was: Who were the leaders who chose a candidate for our people without the input or the breadth of even the deaf and dumb of Ondo State?” he wrote.
Abayomi explained that he found Tinubu’s response to his question unconvincing and made it clear to him that it was a violation of the right of the people of Ondo State.
He explained that he had to stand against the Akeredolu’s emergence because he believed the procedure adopted was a violation of the people’s right to constitute government over themselves by their votes.
The people, he added, have been excluded since independence in 1960 from the decision to elect their rulers, a development that has predisposed them to desperate want.
“Now, our people have no houses in Victoria Island or Maitama, no land in Dubai or Johannesburg, no private jets or jetty. They don’t even have the money to sink boreholes to get little water or to buy good food. They have no passable road from home to farm or from farm to home. Their children have no worthwhile access to basic education or well-being,” he stated.
He warned Tinubu that the people could one day rise against the abridgement of their democratic right to choose leaders that will create possibilities and better their lot instead of the malicious governance they have experienced.
“But if we thought, we can win for them the right to vote, and through their votes, to raise good government and bring down bad government, then, they can change their misfortune under leadership, that, in our land, has often been corrupt and pitiless, to evolving hope, substitute their despair for possibility and long unrealizable desires for reality,” he declared.
He expressed concern about the entrenchment of oligarchic tendencies that have appropriated the people’s right and their wealth. The oligarchs, of which he hinted Tinubu is a member, are minded to buy off what is left of the people’s assets, voting right, with money stolen from the people.

“When we see for example, what is going on in the National Assembly among the constituency of political leaders that make up the Assembly, we see how unfortunate our people truly are. A Senator is alleged to make over N29,479,749 per month as against N18, 000 made by the common man he represents. Thus it will take not less than 1,638 years of hard work for the common man’s labour to acquire the annual worth of a senator. In one case that came to my attention a governor spent N1billion for the first year anniversary while a woman he governs over begged helplessly for N200 to buy ‘pure water’ for her daughter to go to school the next morning,” Abayomi added.

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