Tinubu in Fashola’s book – The Sun Nigeria

Whether you want to read the mind of APC presidential candidate Asiwaju Bola Tinubu as a strategist, the book to read is: “FASHOLA, THE NIGERIAN DREAM – A Political Biography”. This is a book that brings me to tears because my co-author, Dimgba Igwe did not live to see this book published. Another reason for my tears is that on July 23 I will be 70 years old by the grace of God and Dimgba will not be there to organize my platinum jubilee like he did when I was 40, 50 and 60 . My friend didn’t live to be 60. So sad.

In our 476-page biography on Fashola, we saw Tinubu as a worried Governor of Lagos State looking for the right successor, knowing that a ruler without a right successor is a failure. We talked to everyone to talk to, using our investigative and literary skills to weave together a thriller filled with drama and intrigue, a book that Professor Paul D. Ocheje of the University of Windsor, Canada, described as “an engaging read. ”

In it, Tayo Ayinde, Governor Bola Tinubu’s former security chief, told us: “A contractor in gratitude sent me 20 million naira to hand over to Fashola, then chief of staff who facilitated the project. This is the first time I have revealed this incident to anyone. He rejected it out of hand, asking, ‘Why?’ »

Asiwaju Tinubu told us that after finishing his son Fashola’s biography, he would like us to write his own biography. “It would be my turn,” he said. Here is chapter 17 entitled “THE ANOINTING OF FASHOLA”.

***

Now, having exhausted his list of aspirants and not finding any that met his requirements, Tinubu found himself in a dilemma. Who next? The burden haunted him everywhere.

At home, Tinubu, usually taciturn when it came to discussing his politics and public office, became even more withdrawn into his inner turmoil. His wife, Oluremi, found him very distant and deeply worried. In such a mood, Tinubu was not easy to penetrate. “When I saw that the question of the successor worried him a lot,” the First Lady told us, “I decided not to add to his problem or force him to choose anyone. He is a very calm man at home. The only time I get him to talk is when he’s on the toilet seat. I’m going to sit across from him – then he won’t be able to move. It’s the only time I get his attention. And when he’s standing, there must be very few words. They have to be smart questions. Don’t come to him with silly questions. The idiots he can endure while he’s on the toilet seat. He was like, ‘Oh, go get me my coffee. Give me my journals. I would say no. And we would talk. But it is more serious. »

From Oluremi, you get an idea of ​​his deep concern and belief that “a leader without a successor is a failure”. He was haunted by his own credo that “any leadership that fails to develop other leaders has accomplished nothing.” She noted that after five years of exile in societies where even your best efforts failed to gain recognition, mainly because you were an outsider, and after a vengeful military junta ruined everything the family left behind, leaving them on their return to “live in our suitcases”, Tinubu was determined to make a difference in governance, to usher in an era of planned development process. But this dream was thwarted by the terrible state of government they inherited from the military.

“What we inherited from the military was really so bad,” she said. “The amount of work and passion my husband had to put in to turn things around, the planning and the foundations he laid, the massive amount of work he put in, aging in the office, became a topic of great concern. What do you now say is your legacy if you don’t have capable hands to bring your efforts to light? If you don’t have good hands to hand over the work you’ve done, that’s terrible. It can even kill you. It can kill. It erases everything. All your effort wasted, it’s like what else? Look at President Obasanjo today. When you look at the PDP government, who has succeeded Obasanjo so far? This is the tragedy we were trying to avoid.

Although he had many trusted confidants in his cabinet, especially non-Lagosians like Rauf Aregbesola and Lai Mohammed, he became suspicious of almost everyone’s advice due to the suspicion that almost everyone supported a person or the other. Tinubu, for example, believed that BRF (the acronym for Fashola) supported Aro Lambo! He said: “I think he believed in Aro Lambo. He was already holding meetings about this with Rauf Aregbesola and others. Such a claim was also favored by Adebola Agunbiade who remembers asking his brother Fashola in London who was going to be the next governor and he replied “Aro Lambo”. If so, events would soon prove that such support was unrequited love.

But either way, BRF admitted he had his own favorite candidate, but outright refused to divulge the candidate, leaving people to speculate on names like Aro Lambo, Tola Kasali and Remi Adiukwu. But (Fashola’s father) Pa Ademola Fashola’s view on who supported BRF was that for the Chief of Staff it was a matter of duty rather than preference for any particular candidate . “There were about a dozen candidates lining up to become governor,” he said, “but he wasn’t among them. In fact, he made the innocent mistake of trying to correct a pre-run ad from two of his colleagues who wanted to be governor. He paid for the photograph of one because he condemned the posture, trying to say the photo wasn’t good for campaign purposes. He paid a new photographer to take the photo of Gbajabiamila. Then he made another correction for Aro Lambo.

BRF confirmed his father’s version of events, saying he was basically “everyone’s friend, so I helped with the photographs of Aro Lambo and I also helped with those of Adiukwu Bakare. too. I saw his poster and said I didn’t like it. We were all members of the same family and whoever becomes governor of the family agrees with me.

He admitted that he had in fact mentioned his candidate in Tinubu, but the governor’s response was emphatic: “No, shut up!”

(To be continued)

Angela C. Hale