A Simply Loyal Man Called Osinbajo, By John Mayaki

If the media permutations and movements across the party aisle are anything to go by, it is definitely open season for politics in Nigeria, never mind that the main event is still a couple of years away. It is a season of obvious patterns and recurring themes, including the execution of coordinated attacks on selected persons by some highly-rewarded political tricksters and mischief-makers.

The victims of the coordinated attacks, through no deliberate action, earned the ire of the political merchants by distinguishing themselves in such a way that they are considered a “threat” or “stumbling block” to an ambition. It makes it so that the nature of the onslaught, which often manifests in the media, is designed to ‘take out a problem’ through various means and tactics.

The goal is to pre-emptively de-market a perceived rival candidate and cut down such a person’s popularity, even if they have not declared any ambition or remotely expressed interest. Or to forcibly extract a withdrawal statement from the victim, in effect ruling himself out of a race he never joined so that the attackers may sleep better.

Regardless of how it is executed, it makes no doubt a difficult experience for the victims on the receiving end particularly because the content of the attacks are typically invented lies, baseless allegations, and crude smear materials developed and distributed from a control room.

Vice President Yemi Osinbajo is one of such innocent victims in this game of thrones. His only fault is the superlative performance he has posted in his role, and the consequential result of earning the trust and confidence of his boss, party structure, and a broad range of Nigerians across different demography and ethnicity.

His rising popularity, having brought an unprecedented prestige and renewed respect to the office of the Vice Presidency, caused the outbreak of a different kind of pandemic in the camps of the permutation makers who willed him to be their opponent in a contest that exists only in their collective imagination.

As the Vice President received more accolades for his data-backed contributions to the success of the administration, the infection rate doubled and the fever worsened. Although cheering to well-meaning Nigerians, these people did not like the data produced by Woodford Consulting, a respected private outfit, which showed that Prof. Yemi Osinbajo, more than any other Vice President in the country’s history, achieved “ground-breaking, significant contributions in the areas of reducing farmer-herder conflicts, restoring peace in the then volatile Niger-Delta region, promoting Small and Medium Enterprises, establishing the biggest social investment programmes in the continent, and commitment to upholding human rights alongside repressing gross violations in Nigeria.”

The report chronicled verifiable successes in the assigned duties of the Vice President as Chairman of the National Economic Council and other similar responsibilities so delegated to him by the President. Indeed, with his leadership, Nigeria posted a vastly improved record in the ease of doing business ranking, which must be said is a culmination of improvements in several sectors ranging from the removal of red tapes in business development to access to government support, achieved through grueling reorientation and revamp of different agencies.

His introduction of the Economic Sustainability Plan, under which Nigerians benefited from MSME Survival Fund, Youth Fund, Mass Housing Programmes, Farmers Fund, Teachers’ Welfare Scheme, and other notable achievements also formed a core part of the report and explains his widespread admiration by millions of Nigerians, especially those overlooked for so long by the government.

Quietly going about his job, with no mind nor time for the kind of meetings his attackers spend their productive time and energy on, he has actively pursued and achieved incremental progress in gridlocked areas and demonstrated a complete devotion to the success of the administration and the elevation of his principal, President Muhammadu Buhari.

Troubled by this and his rising profile, the attackers, rendered restless by their nefarious plot, made him the subject of media attacks intended to set fire on his propellants, namely his frictionless relationship of trust and mutual respect with the President and his standing within the political structure that set the stage for his national emergence.

In the corners of their room, these ones have designed and thrust upon him an agenda he has not declared. They use this invented lie as the foundation of fallacious gossips of fictional conflicts, notably between the Vice President and his present and former principals, President Muhammadu Buhari and Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, the former Governor of Lagos in whose cabinet Prof. Osinbajo previously served and executed lasting reforms in the judicial division.

When they are not demanding his whereabouts, as if he is ever hidden, they bleat about a purported grand betrayal plan, pretending to be fighting the battles of those who neither asked them nor aware of their nefarious acts. But hard as they may try, their efforts have been rewarded with a resounding failure. Because this Vice President is loyal. And honest, capable, conscientious, and with a sound moral compass.

When the political merchants make accusations, they only project the inner workings of their damaged minds.

Vice President Yemi Osinbajo continues to enjoy the trust of the man he dutifully serves, a fact evidenced by his recent trip to London to represent him at a United Nations High-Level event on Energy transition in Africa.

His relationship with Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, an important National figure and party leader, could also not be better.

Prof. Osinbajo maintains alliances required for the progress of the country. Because his only agenda is the growth of Nigeria and finding rewarding opportunities for the abundance of talents displayed daily by the youths of the country.

Nigerians know this and recent events only reinforce the knowledge and their admiration of the man. Those who plot to mislead them into thinking otherwise with efforts targeted at soiling their VP’s unblemished image and to wreck his relationship with his allies, will once again be confronted by overwhelming evidence of their failure.

Mayaki is a Journalist, Historian, Diplomat, Archivist, Documentalist, Communication, Culture and Media expert (Coventry University, England). He’s also an Oxford and Cambridge University-trained entrepreneurship, leadership and sustainability expert. A Professional Consultant on Communication, Management and Strategy (Chattered Management Institute, England).

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Saturday 9th of October 2021

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