By Abdu Abdullahi
If you have read the book, The Accidental Public Servant authored by Malam Nasir El- Rufai, Kaduna’s controversial governor, you would have probably celebrated him for his intellectual acumen.
Undoubtedly, his brooding analyses on certain national events in that publication are inspiring, embedded with fascinating realities and sound illustrations for effecting a desirable change in Nigeria.
Evidently, his insightful knowledge and profound understanding of socio political issues he raised are highly superb, corroborative and meritorious. That he is a prolific writer with the deplorable condition of Nigeria printed in his heart as suggested by his presentation of lamentations needs no repetition.
Thus, you would be propelled to conclude that he is among the right Messiahs that the country urgently needs in times of lingering crisis of adversities.
In a highly classical and meticulous adherence, the fundamental themes he deals with in the book, especially the dynamics of power and how the nation is broken into a great casualty of political gimmicks of the power elite would compel you to believe that when El- Rufai is gifted with the mantle of learnership, he would strike a big difference between a responsive governor as against the irresponsive type, between a governor who would justify leadership against the one who would jeopardize it, between a leader who would use power resource judiciously as opposed to those who abuse it arbitrarily.
But after reflective sojourn on the recent socio-economic turmoil he threw his state into, I could not corroborate between the man who unraveled significant issues in that book that made him an awesome and diligent personality and the governor who deployed a blatant style of arrogance, remnants of despotism and insensitivity when the organised labour unions pleaded with him to listen to the voice of reason and reconciliation.
Eventually, El-Rufai elucidated to us in the conflict that his government had no listening ears in the era of democracy. The governor chose to be blind to the sorrow of the sorrowful as well as wailing of the wailers. And the only language he spoke loudly was the resentful language of coercion and intimidation.
The atmospheric situation then looked very thick and suspense laden that only El-Rufai saw what we could not see. He had alarming sophomania in his unfolding characterization towards that ill- motivated confrontation. On diplomacy alternative, it was absolutely a stereotyped approach for him to deploy and quench that momentous conundrum.
There went El-Rufai chasing the shadow instead of the real object; Lord, he was amongst the uncompromising lots when things were grinding to a halt! He was intolerant of his very intolerance as Kaduna was on the verge of being set on fire. Did he care?
Not at all! He remained selflessly and rigidly adamant! He wanted to make himself a hero but behaved like a famous villain in a fiction. The only boss around to do and undo the accidental things perfectly was El-Rufai. Poor Kaduna! The accidental governor did not yield to the gathering pressures of the time even if the state would burst into bits.
At the peak of the emerging debacle, there seemed to be no prudent connection in his response to the troubleshooting scenario. As a prelude to his self estimation and exaltation, he let loose excessive power that was about to consume him but was still largely pompous, conceited, self indulgent to a tremendous fault.
Influenced by the intoxicant of power, he could not see fairly beyond the executive power vested in him by the constitution. But the same constitution also charges him to be wary of obstructing the fundamental rights of his subjects.
Looking at it from his psychological built up, his unlimited coercion of those coercive hours highlighted enormous pleasure to his protruding egoism and displeasure to the people who defied all odds to vote him into the seat of the executive governor. El-Rufai forgot that he was a-one-time peaceful and exuberant demonstrator and nobody harassed him for that matter. The joint labour should have also declared him wanted for murdering sleep and breaching the peace of Kaduna. He wouldn’t have been a governor if the state had not been in existence.
As El-Rufai launched a war against the constitutional right to demonstrate, he inimically hoisted the banner of executive disobedience against our collective sensitivity and democratic values. He dismissed the cries that his state had already gone deep in another battle with the deadly gunmen, for which he is still guilty of not containing.
By the grace of his executive power that bears no compromise of whatsoever, he wanted to enforce a very unpopular policy of sacking workers for the benefit of downsizing to improve the state economy. He ignored the wrong timing of the state high level of insecurity to execute that obnoxious action.
Nevertheless, renowned economists have reiterated that unemployment is one of the yard sticks of measuring a bad economy. This is a rudimentary economics lesson that El-Rufai has learnt for many years.
But then, we are waiting for El-Rufai to downsize the bandits terrorizing his state to strengthen security. We are still waiting for him to declare notorious bandits wanted for sacking peace and ‘ handsome reward’ will be given to the person who provides useful information to nail them or the security persons who arrest them. This is where El-Rufai ought to be tough, resolute and obstinate. And what more, he will deserve our ever lasting reverence.
During the crisis, El-Rufai succeeded in convincing us that he valued no sensitivity; he missed the point on human rationality; he probed to be a risk carrier to endanger democracy; he made all of us to believe that he is an accidental governor who antagonized the very people whose votes uplifted him to where he is now. While the wind of instability was blowing across the state, he summoned his unguided utterances to fuel it.
By and large, El-Rufai has, seemingly, no regrets trampling only on the weak and vulnerable while the powerful and influential have no cause to confront him. Sheikh Dahiru Bauchi can authoritatively say it better in this regard concerning the maltreatment his Islamiyya pupils were subjected to.
I will never forget to mention the cheap popularity aspect. In that popularity exhibition, he announced the labour leaders as wanted with ‘ handsome reward’ waiting for the luckiest person to arrest them. Of course, he was now making mockery of a potential disaster awaiting just to enjoy media coverage.
What could have transpired if the federal government had not intervened? Would he have summoned his sensitivity and allowed genuine reason to prevail? Not El-Rufai! He was a lonely fighter who needed no army and wanted to achieve simple and rapid conquest of what he called’ sabotuers.’ The governor who allegedly hired thugs to disperse peaceful demonstrators only reminds you the era of military despotism as well as the act of sabotage.
Is El-Rufai a sadist? This is an inevitable interrogation to scrutinize. How do you interpret this: His people were in serious anguish but he greatly endavoured to aggravate it by making the state volatile, accompanied by I don’t care attitude. Believe you me, many had their blood pressure risen to a substantial proportion when he found it comfortable to pronounce sacking of workers in just a minute without gratuities and pension!
This was coming at a time when hundreds of traders were recounting their losses not through fire accidents but owing to the tragedy enacted and single handedly played by the accidental governor who took precious time to demolish their shopes without compensation.
Meanwhile, my heartfelt sympathy is hereby extended to the peace loving people of Kaduna. May the Almighty Allah deliver them from the unrelented excesses of their troubling governor.
I fervently pray to the supreme being not to foresake them whenever the accidental governor plots to agonize them for unjustifiable cause. May He empower them with the fortitude to bear the irreparable damages he has done to their sensitivity, yearnings and aspirations. May He also provide them the courage to carry the unbearable pains of having voted him with their cheerful heart only to be greatly disappointed afterwards.
May Allah continue to guide the other governors to abandon him again in the future if he ever dares to bring another unwanted upheaval in Kaduna. And on a general note, May God destroy his costly dream that a litre of petrol should sell at 380 Naira.
Remember this famous philosophy. If you want to test a person’s true character, give him power. By the votes of the people, power now belongs to Malam Nasir El-Rufai. His character is now different from what he portrays himself to be in the said book.
El-Rufai is now sitting on power and has blended part of his character to be power abuser. El-Rufai was highly spirited and motivated on the dangerous slogan of sai mai rusau. Unknown to his fans and the rest of us, he would literary storm the scene with enormous power and authority to make demolitions his hobby. You can think the kind of horror to be unleashed on the people if El-Rufai had been a military governor of a state during the era of military regimes.
It is greatly pathetic that the biggest trouble with the people of Kaduna is the metamorphosis of the accidental public servant to an accidental governor who portrays gross insensitivity to their plights. However, their only healer is the year 2023. It is that year that shall put broad smile on their angry faces.
Arise oh Kadunans! It is not too early to start counting days for, Malam Nasir El-Rufai’s days in office are numbered and recorded! May the peace of Allah be with you!
Abdullahi wrote in from Galadanci Quarters, Ringim, Jigawa State and can be reached through: firstname.lastname@example.org or 07036207998.