Dear Mallam El Rufai,
Happy Birthday. Let me first start by saying I have nothing personal against you. Expect to see me singing your praises when next you do anything that calls for such. You I must say, are a queer type of politician. The type everyone agrees does well any time he is called upon to serve but is also curiously enough, widely despised for aligning personal interest with public discontent to pursue his selfish ends. Your reputation for hypocrisy is legendary. The people you worked for and sang praises of are also the same people you have turned on to move up in life. However I must say that in 2010, you rendered the most honest of your duplicitous declamations when you described President Buhari as ‘expired and perpetually unelectable’. You went on to not only sing his praises as a member of his party but to actively work for his victory in 2015.What you said has proven true. I am sure over the last few months you have seen several old tweets of yours against the Jonathan administration being dug up and spoken of in relation to the current state of the country under President Muhammadu Buhari.You expressed worries over our debts doubling under President Jonathan in 2012 and how it would affect the future of the younger ones. Today you have not only remained mute while our debt profile has trippled under President Buhari from N7.8trn to over N27 trn, you have sat down as head of an ad-hoc committee on the ownership of power distribution companies to say N1.7trn has been pumped into the power companies in 3 years.Note also that Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo had mentioned earlier that government had spent N900bn since coming into office on power and was planning a further N600bn in ‘intervention’. Going by what you both have told us,the Buhari administration has already spent about N3trn on power. What Buhari is probing Obasanjo for spending in 8 years with no results,he has already done in 5.If you point a finger at someone, 3 are pointing back at you. You all will never take that probe seriously because it will arouse much interest in Buhari’s own expenditure since he assumed office. Even if N1.7trn was really spent on the companies in 3 years as you have claimed,don’t you think its stupid to pump that much with your eyes wide open and then heap the blame on them? My point Mallam Nasiru is that you have not only remained mute while a worse panhandler than Jonathan continues to mortgage away our future, you are a key component of the system and was caught more or less justifying a classic case of how our future is being wasted away. At the very least you were assured of a ministerial appointment if Buhari won.The motive was never our best interests. The few that doubted it then will agree now. The most intriguing recollection of your past utterances the internet has spawned over the last month has to be an interview you had with tv news station,TVC while President Jonathan was in office. Let me quote some of the things you said-
“We are just applying military force and we think we can resolve an insurgency?.Its not going to happen. I have been in government. I have ran a territory. I know the amount of information I get, security reports i get as Minister. The President gets 50 times that. And i put it to you and I challenge anyone including DG SSS to this; the SSS knows who these insurgents are. They are not ghosts,they know them. The President knows them.They are just unwilling to do it”.
Going by this logic President Buhari knows who boko haram is. And to be quite honest, Buhari should not only be accused of knowing who and where boko haram are but also of being in bed with them. His extremist tendencies are no secret.In 2001, he said “We will not stop the agitation for the total implementation of sharia in the whole country “. As you very well know also, they appointed him a mediator on their behalf in a proposed dialogue by the Jonathan administration in 2012. Political activist and Sahara Reporters publisher, Omoyele Sowore said while in DSS detention, he was denied calls to his family while top commanders of the sect had access to Phones, TVs and Cable in their cells.Since the Operation Safe Corridor programme began in 2016,a mind-blowing figure of 1,400 boko haram terrorists have been released. Nigerian soldiers who spoke to The Cable are bitter as to why that is the case with one even quoted as saying they go through a lot to arrest these terrorists only for some top persons to come and negotiate their release.That is not done anywhere else in the world. No one captures ISIS or Al-Shabaab terrorists and lets them go after a short while only because they say ‘they have repented’. Except of course they are part of the ’cause’ or are at the very least, sympathetic to it.The only time President Jonathan considered releasing boko haram terrorists was when they proposed an exchange for the kidnapped Chibok girls. Mallam,you are silent. As you turn 60, I hope you dedicate the remainder of your days to speaking the truth at all times to power and not only when it works in your favour. You are said to be angling for a VP slot in 2023 with the visits of Former President Obasanjo and Former Vice-President Namadi Sambo being interpreted as a ploy to buttress political value. The fact that you are not much coveted despite having done well in office is entirely your doing. I hope you transit from self-love to genuine love for country. Happy Birthday once again.
Umar Sa’ad Hassan is based in Kano
LETTER TO EL RUFAI @ 60- YOUR REPUTATION FOR HYPOCRISY OVERSHADOWS THE GOOD YOU DO
Dear Mallam El Rufai,