Victor Kwara Nicholas.
Subject: Mr. NASIRU AHMAD ELRUFAI THE ‘PHILOSOPHER-KING’: A HOBSON’S CHOICE?
In 2014,when I watched you on Kakaaki being interviewed by Zakky Azer,I was bewitched by your eloquence. I was given the impression that Kaduna state mandate-givers would have an intelligent delegate should he win at the polls. I said ‘we would be ‘lucky’ to have a governor with a great intellectual capital’, your resume is a proof that my governor ‘passed’ through schools. Worthy of mention is your careful selection of cabinet members whose qualitative intelligence is another proof that Mr. Elrufai is a neo-platonist whose philosophy on leadership is hinged on the theory of the philosopher-king; this theory holds that only philosophers ought to be kings and vice versa. Whether or not this assertion is a catastrophic idealism is not our concern hic et nunc. Of the three elements of the soul, Plato opines that the ‘rational element’ should superintend over the spiritted and appetitive elements respectively. Sir,I commend your resolve to making Kaduna great again as this seductive slogan overshadowed us into electing you. Like Plato before him,Awolowo recommends democratic socialism and mental magnitude as a prerequisite for leadership and you have tacitly keyed into this. Therefore, I can confidently deduce that you are a ‘philosopher-king’.
Your Excellency Sir,despite your intelligence, wealth of ‘experience’ in the leadership parlance and ‘tract records’ of prudence in speech or lack of it in public domain,the question begging for answers from more sane compatriots is whether or not my supposed unbiased governor is a hobson’s choice for a multi-ethnic and religiously diversed and complex state as Kaduna? The answer to this is NO! Without you,Kaduna would have been greater. Sir,your actions and inactions have shown that you only passed through schools but they did not pass through you,reason being that the picture you have painted as an epitaph is more reprehensible and “too kunyatic” of a supposed governor of the heart of the northern Nigeria-“Kaduna garin gwamna”. I will like to remind his excellency of his promises as enshrined in his party’s manifesto. In the opening lines of the document, you asserted that “…the APC believes that every citizen has the right to live in dignity…it is the duty of the government to organize society to enable every person develop their talents and be educated and healthy …this manifesto sets out what the APC intends to do to support your right to a good life…we pledge that the interest of our people will be the basis of governance in the state…this will guide our actions, policies and programmes…we shall invest in education and foster the security of lives and properties…we will be tough on the perpetrators and supporters of violence…”.
From the foregoing sir,we have briefly stated what you used to convince us when you were begging and treating us like kings as you wooed us for votes. However, a picture is proverbially worth a thousand words. You may take a cue from Ambrogio Lorenzetti’s picture called “the Allegory of good and bad government” painted between 1337 to 1337 which covers three walls of the Sala Dei Nova in the Palazzo Pabblico of Siena. Two things stand out clear in this fresco, the “room of the nine”, was meant to remind leaders of their responsibilities and showing the nine wealthy merchants who ruled the city in the first half of the 14th Century, it was a reminder of the implications of misgovernance and a call to the people to keep a watchful eye on their representatives. Thus, the qualities of virtuous and evil leaders were highlighted.
Your Excellency,in your press releases, you “tasked security agencies to maintain the tempo by ensuring security of life and property throughout the state 2nd/5/2017,you affirmed that security operatives are being ramped to rid the forest areas of the bandits 16/4/2017 when Asso village in Gwong land was attacked by suspected armed fulani militia whom you confessed to have identified and compensated.
THE GAMUT OF OUR SOCIO-POLITICAL QUAGMIRES
We hitherto alluded to the fact that your tenure has painted an ugly,stale and nauseating picture. Generations unborn may be forced willy-nilly to rewrite our pledge and anthem when they look at the picture you have painted as your legacies.
Apart from the curfews imposed on the victims of the pogrom in Southern Kaduna by the armed fulani militia whom you confessed to have traced in foriegn countries and compensated, the people whose lives and properties you swore with the Qur’an to protect are still not secured. Despite the military base and police command in Kafanchan town,the mindless killings have not stopped. Sir,if these terrorists were compensated by you as you confessed,why have they not stopped? If they are herdsmen, where do they always keep or hide their cattle before attacking? Has there been any clash in the nights that leads to the killings? Was the money you compensated them with not sufficient for them hence the continued pogrom?
You referred to the terrorists that attacked Asso village in Gwong land as ‘bandits’. Did they go away with material wealth or human lives were massacred? Or was there a clash that night in any farm?
I have the impression that the governor only opened his mouth and words flowed when he claimed not to joke with the discourse under review. The only higher institutions in Southern Kaduna have been under lock and key. If security is stated as the reason for their closure and the rumoured plan to relocate them is confirmed,i make bold to ask that are the primary pupils and the secondary school students having nine lives? How many staff and students have been killled that security of their lives has become a threat? Why was the University of Maiduguri not relocated despite the attacks it experienced? Why were all schools in Zaria not removed when crises erupted there years ago? Sir, I hope you read the appeal of the APC youth wing of Southern Kaduna?
Recently,you commissioned the Zaria water project. Commendable,I hope you are preparing to go to Southern Kaduna to commission any project either started by you or others before you. I hope the renovations taking place in some schools in the state are not the only fruits of the social contract all of us went into?
While there is a nexus between the the wish of late General Murtala Ramat Mohammed’s call for true federalism as enshrined in the constitution with our situation in Kaduna state,when he,on 19th/10/1975 in Lagos, while addressing the fifty man constitution-drafting committee told them that all employments should reflect the federal character of the country,it is on the strength of this moral responsibility I stand to interrogate the spirit and intention behind allowing the appointment of a minister from the Kaduna north from ‘our’ state,the NPA boss et ce terra without a corresponding effect across other zones.
5. CIVIL SOCIETIES
These are gadflies whose moral duty is essentially to sting sane,sensible and responsible governments to consciousness. Sir,your handling of these voices is a great revelation. No one knows it all and no one is ignorant. Therefore,your body language towards critics circumvent your supposed altruism. Many have gone to prison. This is democracy Sir.
Your Excellency,the essence of this missive is to help you make kaduna state greater. It is therapeutic and ccprescriptive. We hitherto unearthed the ‘kpim’ of the bane of our socio-political security as a people which has made Kaduna state what it is and not what it ought to be. I do not intend herein to be pessimistic. As an optimist,I wish to prescribe the following for my governor (the philosopher-king) in order to make Kaduna greater.
*Recognize and or apologize to SOKAPU. The constitution of this country allows for freedom of association. Before you were elected into Sir Kashim Ibrahim House, this umbrella body representing about 53 nations in Southern Kaduna existed. Sire,let me report to you that the logo of this peoples’ voice was designed by your deputy-Arch. Barnabas Bantex. Sir,when you referred to this body as bigots, it was a bellow the belt bite,it was a direct insult to Mr. Bantex and,whether it was in great wisdom or lack of it that this honorable man kept quiet is a topic for another day. This syllogism says it all: Bantex is a true son of Southern Kaduna who designed the SOKAPU logo,SOKAPU are bigots,therefore Mr Bantex is a bigot. Sir,you are at liberty to apologize to this nation especially your deputy.
A tree cannot make a forest and what destroys a spinach is in the spinach. You seem to have stepped on somany toes. Your party has a faction at the state level. Therefore,your Excellency may put his house in order, for “the family is the bedrock of morality” according to Plato. These people around you now need you and you will need them tomorrow. To corroborate this, Aristotle asserts that “he who refuses to live in the society because he is sufficient for himself or because he does not need it is either a beast or a god”. Of. course,my governor lives in a society of humans.
*Remember posterity. Our actions and inactions have great effects on us in the future, like the law of harvest,we must reap all we sow. The legacy your tenure will bequeath on our children,your supposed grand children will be a bad one. If most people are crying now on account of your policies, what more of the implications of not only relocating schools in Southern Kaduna,but breaking the economic might of the people you swore with a Qur’an to serve without fear or favour will have on their future? Indeed,your unborn grand children will say “the labour of our hero past is in vain”.
Sir,I hope this epistle will save your political career from heating the rocks,I hope it will save your political journey from a shameful hiatus. I hope the adage “when you are leading and no one is following you,you are only having a walk” will be instructive. I hope your Excellency henceforth will start using his heart and not his head.
Happy dependence after ‘independence’ your Excellency.
Victor Kwara Nicholas