While meeting with political leaders in the State House, one of the many items on the agenda for a Presidential ‘homecoming party’, we assume, President Muhammadu Buhari had the sweetest words for his deputy, vice-president Yemi Osinbajo and it was only fair that he did considering the latter did an amazing job holding down the fort during the 5o days he’s been away.
The President boasted of Professor Osinbajo’s capacities to his guests saying that he was able to achieve all he did because “youth and intellect squarely behind him”. Save for the obvious grammatical confusion that using the word “behind” instead of “working for”, the President is spot on and it’s a great a compliment as he could have given a man that managed to salvage the face of this administration in less than two months – after close to two years of leading a nation that had become so frustrated with its leadership they had to take to the streets in protest.
This is exactly what we were thinking when we realised: “hold up!” Did this man just willingly acknowledge his own failings?
By saying that Vice President Osinbajo did so good because of his intellect and youth, did Buhari tacitly point at the fact that they each complement themselves in the areas where they lack because we sure know that youth is something that the President does not have at 74.
He then went on to say of himself that he has “age and purely military experience is behind me”. That we cannot argue with.
And it makes sense. His military experience sets him so squarely upon his own path that he’s refused to take expert advice to float the Naira; to release prisoners who the courts have granted freedom; to pronounce corrupt, officials who clearly have skeletons in their cupboards and so on. So set in his ways – an unsurprising trait for a man of his age – that he refused to address Nigerians directly for 49 days even when his silence threatened to break the worn fabric that holds us together.
Conversely, Professor Yemi Osinbajo’s “youth and intellect” allowed him to calmly and diplomatically navigate the rough waters of the Niger-Delta to restore some calm, to power through the stagnated process of easing up business practices in Nigeria and a 7 hour FEC meeting (because that must always be mentioned) that surely had something to do with the minor dollar crash we have experienced in the past few weeks.
We aren’t sure what the implications of the statements are and we are not clear if it will be okay to truly say what we believe they are but we’ll say this: the President is right.
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