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Aregbesola/tinubu: When Loyalty Is Taken For Granted


Aregbesola/tinubu: When Loyalty Is Taken For Granted


Loyalty is a two way thing, it is not a one-way traffic. It is a rub my back, I rub your chest kind of relationship. In business, in football, in politics, in the arts, and indeed, in everything in life. It is only an idiot without value who would think that an association with one politician means an eternity of slavery, no matter what treatment you receive. I always tell people; “politics is a serious business, and when you are in it with someone, don’t be the canon fodder for nothing. If your contributions are not being appreciated, then, move on, unless when you know that you are actually useless and can’t be relevant elsewhere.

People expect different kinds of reward for their loyalty to you. Some people expect monetary payment, some people expect recognition, some people expect respect, and some people simply expect that you give them a sense of belonging in the political business. I have a very senior friend, who can give a politician everything he has, if that politician can simply mention his name as one of his supporters in public. This friend of mine believes that simply being recognized as a friend of a lawmaker makes his day. There are others who can die for a politician, simply because that politician picks his calls, whenever he calls.

Also, the failure of a political leader to understand that some of his foot soldiers or political children have grown, could cause real problems. You need to accord them the respect their new status deserves. Except for a very ungrateful person, no matter how big you grow, you must always recognize the man or men whose back provided that lift of fortune. So, even when you might have gotten to a higher pedestal than your mentor, you are expected to still accord him the needed respect and honour, except if he is the insecure type of mentor who would want you to polish his shoes everyday as a sign of gratitude.

Reports of a rift between the erstwhile governor of Osun State, Rauf Aregbesola and the godfather of Lagos politics, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu is trending everywhere. The Minister of Interior has reportedly taken his godfather to the cleaners, including, allegedly referring to a video of the strongman of Southwest politics, probably wetting himself during a campaign meeting with some critical political leaders in the Southwest.

Aregbesola who is considered one of the staunchest loyalists of the Bourdillon billionaire during a meeting with Party loyalists in Ijebu-Jesa was reported by various media of having laid bare some of his points of disagreements with his former ‘boss’.

According to a Premium Times report; “Rauf Aregbesola has launched a scathing attack on his erstwhile ally and national leader of the All Progressives Congress, Bola Tinubu. Mr Aregbesola, …, said he acquiesced to Mr. Tinubu’s handpicked candidate as his successor in 2018 because it was agreed that he would continue the legacies he laid.”

While the reports did not specifically report how Oyetola, believed to be Tinubu’s first cousin or nephew, derailed from the agenda set in place by him (Aregbesola), the former governor however declared war, not just on his successor, but also against a man believed in many quarters to be his major benefactor.

Describing Tinubu as a “nonsense man” (“bye to jagba-jagba, bye bye to rede rede) the courageous and independent minded Minister of Interior lamented that Jagaban took his and other followers’ loyalty for granted, and for that assured of his readiness to teach him and his godson a bitter lesson. He promised to replay the Lagos scenario, where a sitting governor, Ambode, was forced out of office by the Lagos State APC, allegedly on the instigation of Tinubu.

Many commentators have tried to lament on how Aregbesola is betraying Tinubu “who made him everything he is in politics”. That is the usual line of some of our commentators. They believe that as soon as you had worked with any political leader, you should forever keep quiet on issues affecting such a political leader or remain eternally tied to him. Aregbesola became a Commissioner for Works under Tinubu and was one of the Tinubu boys “exported” to States in the Southwest to cement Tinubu’s stranglehold on the zone. He became governor for two terms, supposedly, with the financial and political support of Tinubu.

So our birdbrained but loquacious and sanctimonious brothers would want us to believe that Aregbesola should remain in Tinubu’s cage, even if he is being fed feces.

In politics, like in every venture in life, relationships between people is mostly symbiotic rather than parasitic. Hardly would you find anyone continuing in a relationship where he is not benefiting. While Aregbesola could be said to have had his first major political breakthrough while working under Tinubu, the Ilesa born political activist was tapped up by Tinubu for what he can offer to his political project, rather than for the selfless purpose of helping him rise. Aregbesola wasn’t one homeless, untalented and invalid character whom Tinubu picked up from the dustbins to make a Commissioner or governor. As a student, Aregbesola was the speaker of his Students Union Parliament, he was also a founding member of the SDP, who was elected as an LGA delegate during that Party’s congresses, he was a director in Tinubu’s Campaign Organization in 1999. Aregbesola must have shown qualities that Tinubu knew he needed to advance his politics, hence, his recruiting him and making him an integral part of his political family.

Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola deserves the breathing space he is asking for and I can only wish him luck in his bid to assert his political independence and authority. But should he fail to unseat Oyetola, then, I will still doff my hat for him, for at least, not walking away without a fight.

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