By Kola Animashaun

The Sultan of Sokoto, Alhaji Muhammad Sa’ad Abubukar III, ranked the four leading presidential candidates as being able and qualified to lead the country.  His bother, however, would be the post-election.

“Do we,” he asked, “go our different ways or start fighting one another or close ranks and move together?”
As far as he was concerned: “They (the four) are all qualified and nothing is wrong with any of them.  Whoever God Almighty gives power will surely do very well and we will support him too.”

To Muhammadu Buhari, he said: “We have not negative idea any leader as you are all able and I believe Allah will lead us aright.”

I believe that was the standard exhortation to other presidential candidates – Jonathan and Ribadu.  It took tact and diplomacy to negotiate this country.

And, that was a difference between the Emirs of Nasarawa, of Lafia and Keffi, who left their palaces as Buhari visited them. They left nobody to receive Buhari, a former Head of State.

Of course, Buhari was shocked.  To add salt to more injury, Governor Aliyu Akwe Doma declined to see Buhari claiming “In view of his tight campaign schedules, and other official engagements, he will not be able to make time to receive Buhari in Lafia as desired.”

Buhari’s request to spend the night in Lafia was turned down.  Of course, Buhari and his entourage in Keffi, Nasarawa and Lafia were given “a tumultuous welcome from residents who trooped out to see him.

“All the way from Lafia to the Emir’s palace and back to Ta’al Hotel where he addressed a crowd, security forces had a hectic time battling surging crowds.  Many closed down their shops to welcome Buhari.”

You see what sets the man apart from the boys?

Gbenga Kaka
…was my Deputy Governor when I had the good fortune to serve my friend and colleague, Akinrogun Olusegun Osoba as Governor of Ogun State.

Gbenga had a quiet dignity.  He never put a foot wrong and he represented the boss very well.  I remarked all of this in a piece I wrote on his 50th birthday. He has added nearly 10 years and he has mature.

When he was going to the Senate, I said quiet prayers for him to succeed because he will represent Ogun State very well.

He has the right qualifications and the experience to go with it.  On top of that, he has the mien.  He will not only be representing Ogun East Senatorial District but the entire Ogun State.

Jagaban @ 59
…You have added another year and I want to thank Allah for your life.  They variously call you many, many titles: you deserve them all.  You have been doing all you can.  May Allah be with you.
Ahmed Bola Tinubu fire on… jaga-jaga no dey for jagaban!

My Golden Nights (6)

By Prince Bola Ajibola

Life in the United Kingdom proved to be tough and rough for me because of the fact that I was there to carry out a self-funding plan for my education in Law.  That I was able to accomplish it was a miracle.

But let me say here and now that armed with my “golden nights,” I was able to survive the ordeals and all the trials and tribulations with the help of Almighty Allah.  For four years, I battled with this life virtually without sleeping during the day time neither was I sleeping during the night. I was attending the Holborn College and the Inns Court as well as settling down to read at the Senate of London University, all in the day time.

But, thereafter, instead of going back to sleep after 9 O’clock, I was always clocking in at 12 O’clock mid-night to work till 8 O’clock in the morning at my place of work, thus working round the clock.  I did that for about four years.  I wonder whether I could also refer to that as my “golden nights” or my “nights of necessity.”  With all these efforts and with all these wears and tears, coupled with a lot of pains and sufferings, success descended on me in 1962.

I passed my LL.B. examination in July of that year and also passed my Bar final in October that same year.  This overwhelming success in the midst of all this hectic struggle gave me even the die-hard encouragement to put in my application for my Master’s degree in 1963.  I was already on with that programme when a relation saw me in the library actively working on and unfortunately I told him my plan.

He returned home to tell my father that I had finished my Law course that could enable me to practise Law in Nigeria and my plan was to embark on the glossy side of education which had no bearing with my plan to practise Law.  My father urged me to return home immediately. I did because my father’s words are my bounds.

On my return to Nigeria, it became impossible for me to jettison my “golden nights” which I engaged in my legal practice for 23 years, particularly in those days when I had to appear before the late Honourable Justice J.I.C. Taylor of blessed memory.  I kept this “golden nights” on with me as if it was part of my daily life until one day in 1971 when I broke down right on the High Court premises, Lagos.

I was in London being treated for so many ailments within my body and, in fact, I was sick for a year.  But, it is difficult to stop a cat from mousing.

Continues next week.

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