International, Dele Momodu has written an epistle to the newly appointed APC
presidential candidate Muhammad Buhari. In this long
and-soon-to-be-controversial letter, Dele Momodu congratulates the former head
of state for winning the APC presidential primaries. He talks about how he
became a supporter of Buhari, how he believes in him, how he thinks he can
bring the change Nigeria so need at this time. Read his letter below..
Your Excellency, let me start by congratulating you on a keenly contested
Presidential Primary of your party APC which you won resoundingly. Even if I’m
not a member of your party, I’m a recent convert to Buharism, as previously
explained elsewhere, and I believe every member of the opposition must join
forces to work for your victory in 2015. It is for this reason and purpose that
wish to give you a few words of advice and encouragement as
one of your humble disciples. I’ve come to realise that many leaders often fail
because most of their followers are usually too timid or terribly selfish that
they can’t tell them the truth. It is one of the reasons I’ve refused to join
any of the mainstream parties in which I may not be able to express myself
freely. I assure you sir, that I seek nothing but the good of our dear beloved
country in return for my modest support.
Please, permit me to say, categorically, that no man can claim glory for your
victory. The only one to thank is your God who gave you the uncommon attributes
of integrity, modesty and tenacity. I’m aware that success has too many family
members but you must be very careful to know your true blood relations. I can
imagine the pressure you must be getting from every direction at this great
moment in a nation of amazing politicians who already see your likely chances
at the polls. It is our standard practice in Nigeria but you must be careful
not to waste this incredible momentum.
I’ve been monitoring all the hullaballoo since you became victorious. I plead
with you and your party operatives to act fact and hit the ground running.
Your campaign must start urgently because there are so many bridges to cross. I
have no doubt in my mind that the propaganda of your opponent is evaporating so
rapidly and you’ve obviously ignited a passion in our youths who seemed to have
finally connected to your message of change and hope. The last time I witnessed
such an upsurge of emotion and excitement was in 1993 when Chief Moshood Abiola
emerged the Presidential flag-bearer of SDP in Jos. Trust me, you gave us a
fresh hope two days ago.
As a media man, I’m always wary of wasting moments of glory. You cannot imagine
how we kept sleepless nights because of you. Ordinary Nigerians like me kept
faith with and vigil for you. I won’t be surprised if some even fasted. It was
that serious. I saw Christians and Muslims pray together. It was surreal and
magical to say the least. We all waited with bated breath for the results. When
finally it was time to count the ballot, most of us were in suspense. We
counted every vote along with Senator Babafemi Ojudu and company. And we were
very impressed with the ability of the Convention committee led by Dr Kayode
Fayemi, who taught INEC how to run a good election. Our joy knew no bounds as you
came out victorious.
Sir, I wish to assure you that the outcome of that keenly contested election
was not a fluke. You all worked hard and made your party and our country proud.
We were happy to see a Nigerian politician concede defeat even as votes were
still being counted. Alhaji Atiku Abubakar’s tweet was a masterstroke. It
showed clearly that Democracy has germinated in our clime and we can begin to
look forward for bountiful harvests in the not too distant future. We were
impressed with the collective performances of Governor Rabiu Kwankwaso, Govenor
Rochas Okorocha and our Brother Publisher, Sam Nda-Isiah. I pray this team
spirit holds to the end. It is an attitude to encourage because it demonstrates
the preparedness of those who are serious about the 2015 elections. Even the
ambience surrounding the event venue was just too sweet.
My honest and humble suggestion is that you must do what you’ve promised to do,
carry your party along with you and you will find the task ahead a LOT easier.
You’ve criss-crossed the length and breadth of Nigeria in the past
bonding with your party members and fellow Nigerians. This is your fourth
attempt and hopefully the last shot at returning to finish the job which you
were wickedly prevented from finishing in 1985. In your past outings, you tried
all you could but got frustrated all the way by forces beyond your control.
Never mind, the time has come for you to reap the rewards of that Odysseus
In your previous outings, Sir, you must have suffered a huge trauma. You were
called many unprintable names because of your bluntness and inability to
pretend and lie about your faith and beliefs. The one ugly label that stuck to
you like a leech is that of being an Islamic fundamentalist. Even
recently, you were subliminally accused of being the prime promoter of the
much-dreaded Boko Haram. But no one had the guts to frontally arrest you and
prosecute you for crimes against your country and humanity. I still wonder till
this day how you managed to bear all the insults and assaults against you with
such unusual equanimity.
In the process of trying to prove your innocence, you went to great lengths and
chose all manner of characters as your running-mates. I remember you chose a
prominent and highly-cerebral Igbo Chief, Dr Chuba Okadigbo, as your Vice
Presidential candidate, but that was not good enough for our people to vote for
you. Instead, you were described as an incurable irredentist. Most recently,
and probably out of desperation to shed off the toga of religious bigotry, you
chose the fiery preacher, Pastor Tunde Bakare of The Latter Rain Assembly, as
your soul-mate, but you were still not able to wash off your hands clean like
Pontius Pilate. I must confess that your skin must be tougher than that of a
porcupine. If there is one lesson we must all learn from you, it is that we
must never give up in the face of daunting challenges. You are truly resilient
My dream is to see your party come together to form a kind of shadow cabinet as
soon as possible. This will also show your teeming supporters how
committed you are. The composition of your squad will reveal the kind of
personalities that will eventually form your dream team in Government. From now
on members of that crew will be formulating policies and commenting on issues
of national economic and social importance and showing Nigerians what they
should come to expect from May 29 2015. I’ve always been an advocate of
such because it additionally helps you to gather a combined synergy. Instead of
relying on your personal popularity, it would be possible to tap into the
energy of other members and millions of youths who are happy to volunteer for
your campaign. For the first time since you started contesting in 2003, you
have a nationwide spread of supporters behind you. It is almost supernatural
that the Governors in your party control the chunkiest parts in Nigeria. But
your biggest assets are the masses who believe in you. They must never be taken
for granted because they are the voice of God.
If the APC can sustain the classy craftsmanship we saw at the Lagos Convention,
I’ve no doubt that your campaign would catch the attention of most Nigerians
everywhere and change the lacklustre way of organising political rallies. Your
campaign must be issue based. I loved your letter to the APC Delegates. It was
so soul-lifting that it went viral. It would be nice to write from time to time
to Nigerians intimating them on how you plan to tackle the many problems
afflicting our country. In addition you must not fear to regularly interact
with Nigerians face to face when matters of national importance arise. It
is a poor leader who leaves such matters to publicists and spokesperson.
It reveals that they are insecure and unsure of themselves. More
importantly, it displays a significant disconnect between the leader and his
constituents as well as a distinct lack of compassion. We have suffered too
many unfulfilled promises and too many shocking denials of matters which
critically affect our people. The people have become virtually paranoid
of politicians and their sugar-coated and phantasmagorical lies.
There are too many brilliant Nigerians across the world desperate to see a
better Nigeria before they die. They will support you unconditionally once they
key into your dream for the country. The situation of the country is so bad
that everyone is expecting a miracle from God. This is the time to prove that
Nigeria is not a cursed country but a truly blessed race. I’m already impressed
with the calibre of people I see around you and I’m persuaded they are capable
of not only helping you to win the election but also to run an effective
I wish you the best of luck Sir.
LET THE RACE BEGIN MR PRESIDENT
I have no personal animosity against you, Mr President. As a matter of fact, I
think you have been just unfortunate to have assumed power at a most terrible
period in the history of our country. I cannot write you off in the next
Presidential contest. You are the incumbent with all the Federal might at your
disposal. But it is going to be the biggest battle that you, PDP and indeed the
conservatives have ever fought since coming to power in 1999.
If you, as the President fail in your second term bid, it would be due to
several reasons. The first is that PDP has not lived up to its billing despite
all the vast resources at its disposal. The money spent since then would have
turned a more prudent country into a paradise on earth. But in our own case,
the more you look, the less you see. Education has collapsed totally.
Infrastructural decay is abysmal. Insecurity is atrocious. Corruption has shot
through the roof. It is a long tale of woes.
Even those much vaunted areas that your Government promotes in our media are
now being shown to be nothing more than propaganda stunts. We still have no
power despite all the amounts that have been burnt in the purported attempt to
provide light for our people. Our economy is in shambles. Our
international economists have totally lost the grip. I still cannot
understand how the price of crude has fallen to the level that it has and yet
the domestic price of petrol and petroleum products has not fallen a kobo.
It is sacrilegious. The one thing that is clear is that there is
now no subsidy of any description so the so-called deficits in the budget
should not be there. Our voodoo economists however will tell us the
contrary. Ask them to tell you the truth because the die is cast.
The major challenge is that your supporters are also fond of threatening
hell-fire against your opponents instead of trying to sell your best
attributes. I can see this strategy failing already. Please, don’t deviate from
your belief that the blood of Nigerians is not worth dropping for politics. Be
a man of peace and not a man of war. God has been too kind to you. If He
wishes, he may still retain you in power.