July 14, 2021

Osinbajo: Which law is broken for being loyal?

Osinbajo: Which law is broken for being loyal?

President Muhammadu Buhari Chats with the Vice President Yemi Osinbajo others during the 2018 National Convention of the Party at the Eagle Square in Abuja.

By Remi Adebayo

The popularly held belief that public service is thankless can be subjective, but not always. One wonders why public office holders always end up with soiled integrity years or even decades after vacating the platforms once used to offer service to the public, especially in places like ours.

Interestingly, we exist in a world where ideas are touted as reasons behind every visible and invisible innovations, including all dominant deeds of the past, those we have today and countless that will also follow in the future but then, how then can all these discoveries find expression without an organized and stable environment?

So, it jolts when people call out individuals inadvertently to act in the way they would never have acted themselves by setting outlandish behavioural template in the pattern at variance with the principles of the accused.

Of late, the mention of the name, Yemi Osinbajo; pastor, senior member of the Nigerian Bar, someone’s father and husband; especially as vice president, arouses nostalgic reactions in certain quarters and when interrogate reasons behind those misgivings around the person of the nation’s second-ranked public official, they protest often the support accorded the President, his principal and the total adherence to the Oath he swore for the Office of the Vice President.

Even as novice to the Law, every Nigerian should at least be conversant with Section 130 (2) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended), where it vested state powers in the President. “The President shall be the Head of State, the Chief Executive of the Federation and Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of the Federation.”

Section 145 (1) threw more light on when the Vice President can be seen to be visible and in charge of the role assigned by the President: “Whenever the President is proceeding on vacation or is otherwise unable to discharge the functions of his Office, he shall transmit a written declaration to the President of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Representatives to that effect, and until he transmits to them a written declaration to the contrary, the Vice-President shall perform the functions of the President as Acting President.”

To these, it begs for answer to demand from these accusers to ask about the law promulgated other than this, and which of the provisions contained in the current one they expect from the Senior Advocate to break either now or in the future.

Pray! Is Osinbajo really a laidback as being insinuated, or are these just being orchestrated to create imbalance and instability in the President Muhammadu Buhari’s Government; and if one may ask; to what ends would a acrimonious polity be for the prosperity, peace, economic advancement of a nation combating conflicts in many parts of the country alongside the devastating challenges posed by the global Covid-19 pandemic if these two leaders choose to be at loggerheads with each other to the delight of those rabble-rousers?

Amazing as it can be, these busybodies and self-appointed moral judges have not at least for once estimated various benefits that have accrued to the ordinary citizen from the existing cordial relationship between the President and his deputy through which the much that have been witnessed through the economic revival and social investments made by the Administration is currently being largely applauded.

For instance, the Vice President, rather than engaging in the trivialities of self-pride to divide the presidency has spearheaded a number of economic initiatives and social investment interventions where countless homes and have been assisted by the government to pull out from negative economic consequences.

Now, an Osinbajo as a pastor is clearly following the Biblical instruction to submit to his principal in the manner he has chosen. I have not seen a deputy as loyal as Elisha as he was the dutiful disciple to the spiritually endowed prophet like Elijah. In spite of following the master for years to the point that he similarly possessed some grace to display some powers from which he could showcase his gifts, Elisha waited patiently until the parting time before he could demand to benefit in double measures of the power of Elijah, his master.

The instruction is simple, only if Elisha would wait to be alert when the time arrived. What he would not achieve violently was delivered to him by patience and in knowing when not to outshine the master, in line with God’s and the Machiavellian power principle. Osinbajo is a pastor and seasoned scholar as someone who has attained the apex in academic progression to become Law professor so he knows. If we may then ask, what scripture has he broken?

The duty of Number Two in the power settings is that ability to watch in closest distance the weaknesses of Number One; it is therefore the strength of a dependable Number Two, here means a deputy, to offer some covers through which the vulnerability of the principal is not exposed. The position of the vice-president is an unusual powerful one; reasons why threatened principals would want to fence out their deputies, but when the relationship between the two are cordial, the organization or the nation they jointly manage should rejoice.

The beauty of this administration is that template of loyalty, the tranquil ambience and unity deliberately cultivated by the duo of President Muhammadu Buhari and his dependable deputy, Professor Yemi Osinbajo; SAN which surprisingly unsettles their detractors who instead of celebrating the cooperation between the drivers of the Nigerian vehicle would be glad to see a heated polity to distract the leadership from genuine commitment to tackling the real nemeses the nation is confronted with manifesting in corruption, insecurity and economic challenges.

Without doubting that these actually exist, of course without which the essence of government was needless, would it not rather be pleasing to have them combated in a united and coordinated presidency driven by mutual respect and lawful relationship between the two.

It is human and expected that there must be disagreement in every truthful human relationship; spouses disagree; colleagues disagree, even in the spiritual environment, people disagree but what matters in resolving disagreement is the sincerity and maturity brought with it. Assuming the President and his deputy have some issues to iron out or have divergent views on policies and direction of government, how good will washing their proverbial ‘dirty’ linen in the public serve in addressing those issues?

So, when next this man unjustifiably comes under social media onslaughts, the best question to ask is what law forbids loyalty and which one will be promulgated to legalize a rancorous presidency in the future.

Remi Adebayo is National Publicity Director, Osinbajo Grassroots Organisation.