….By Olufemi Lawson
“I am out to become President of Nigeria. No intimidation, no blackmail can stop me. If you want to fight a pig, you must be ready to be smeared and I’m ready to be dirty”
Those were the exact words uttered by Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu when he paid a courtesy call on the Olubadan designate, High Chief Lekan Balogun on Sunday 20 February, as part of his consultations on his presidential ambition. This was widely reported by the news media, both social and regular. Many Nigerians considered this statement offensive and smacked of desperation on the part of Jagaban.
However, one of Tinubu’s aides, Tunde Rahman, the following day, made efforts to correct the negative impression of the statement on his principal, accusing media houses of twisting Tinubu words in order to “pour invectives on the person of Asiwaju”.
Rahman did not deny that Tinubu made the statement, only that the statement was twisted. But the question remains: how else would such statement be reported without conveying the message Rahman tried to correct?
Compare this statement to the one made by former President Goodluck Jonathan in the campaign leading to the 2015 presidential election: “my political ambition is not worth the blood of any Nigerian”.
There is no way any naysayer could have twisted this statement other than what it conveyed: that is, here is a man wanting to be retained as the President, but not desperate to cling to power at all cost, especially if it involves shedding of blood to achieve it. And he demonstrated it beyond any doubts when he conceded defeat, even while counting of votes was still going on. His sacrifice doused the rising tension engulfing the country at that time, the consequence of which could have been grievous.
So, why did Tinubu, a colossus in politics, expected to be conscious of wannabes latching on to his every word, speak in a manner that connotes desperation? Since Rahman did not deny Asiwaju’s statement, can we simply ask: Why in the first instance would he fight a pig? And who is the pig, he was referring to? The answer to the first question should give a clue to the answer of the second.
The only reason a decent and a supposedly contented man will be ready to fight a pig is, if the pig is holding what is very dear to him. And the pig is not willing to release the precious thing to the man. And since this man considers what the pig refuses to hand over to him as the one thing that remains for him to be almost immortal, then he can go bunkers with the pig. It’s now a do or die affair between him and the pig. And who is this pig that Asiwaju metaphorically referred to? I don’t know. And why would this pig refuse to hand him his key to deity? I don’t have an answer to that either.
All I know is that a pig, despite its dirt malignance, is reputed to have brain similar to a man, in that it has a gyrecephalic brain, making it an easily translatable model. As a matter of medical fact, the genetic DNA similarity between pigs and human beings, is 98%. This physiology certainly makes a pig capable of discernment. Maybe this particular pig that Asiwaju referred to is a Nostradamus who has foreseen the future where Jagaban’s presidency would be a disaster and since it has the wherewithal to stop him now, he would do so. And Tinubu having seen the body language and the surreptitious moves of the pig, has decided to fire the first salvo.
The upcoming weeks and months as we approach the 2023 presidential election, would be very interesting. But who is this Tinubu’s pig?
Olufemi Lawson is the Spokesman of the Southern Nigeria Frontier SNF, he sent in this piece, from Lagos.