Nigeria: Femi Fani-Kayode At It Again

10 August 2019

Since Chief Fani-Kayode, former minister of Aviation was ousted from corridors of power, the only thing he merchandises in order to remain politically relevant is his usual macabre dance crafted in ethnic and religious war songs. One was therefore not surprised that Chief Fani-Kayode converted the story of five Nigerians who were reportedly kidnapped in Ijebu Ode, to a means of drumming religious and ethnic war.

When Vice President Yemi Osinbajo recently said that stories about kidnapping in Nigeria are overtly sensationalised and exaggerated, it appears he had the likes of Fani-Kayode in mind. When one subjects the introduction of Kayode's vitriolic aspersions to logic and facts, his intention and degree of desperation becomes more obvious and glaring.

In his bid to transform the abduction story to a religious affair, Fani-Kayode, without fact-checking, reported that no less than five pastors of the Redeemed Christians Church of God (RCCG) have been abducted in Ijebu Ode, Ogun State even when the latter media reports quoted Pastor Enoch Adegboye, the General Overseer of the Redeemed Christians Church of God, to have said that only one cleric was actually abducted.

While the identity and status of those kidnapped do not reduce the weight of the incidence, is it not unfortunate and ridiculous that Fani-Kayode, a lawyer and a former Minister of the Federal Republic of Nigeria has unjustly hyped the incidence by according it a religious connotation in order to draw needless attention?

The killings across the country, either by terrorists, bandits and herdsmen, is condemnable by every right-thinking Nigerian, but reducing the crisis to a religious or ethnic war like Fani-Kayode is notorious for, will do this country no good. Taking the advantage of the security situation to exalt self by undeserving elements like Fani-Kayode is not only unpatriotic, it is uncharitable.

Fani Kayode is an expert of tomfoolery; he mobs sentiments to subtly press and spark ethnic and religious hatred among suspecting Nigerians. In the article titled Abduction of RCCG pastors, slaughter of Catholic priest and a word for Adeboye, Osinbajo.

Kayode buttressed pointless argument arising from an incident that has been meticulously orchestrated by the haters of this government to compel the mentioned man of God to unwillingly react to a circumstance designed by evil men to give a government that is making frantic efforts to upturn the security situation in the country.

Insecurity has both local and national dimensions; a threat in any part of the country is a sure threat to our collective existence. Thus, fragmenting insecurity to ethnic and religious codes, undermine government efforts in addressing the situation.

The reckless speed with which Fani-Kayode gives religious colour to abduction that has nothing to do with religion suggest that he detests peace and prosperity of this nation. In many of his posts on social media, he had attributed most of the security challenges to a particular ethic group, the Fulani. He fails to remember that Fulani, just like every ethnic group in Nigeria, are not monolithic in composition.

No doubt, there are good and bad Fulani. To achieve peaceful coexistence among various ethnic and religious groups in the country however, efforts must be made to exorcise the good ones from the bad ones without necessarily demonising a particular ethnic group or religion.

The life of every Nigerian counts to the government of President Muhammdu Buhari and his Vice, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo, have taken an oath to preserve the sanctity of lives of all Nigerians irrespective of tribe or place of origin.

Furthermore, there is absolutely no doubting the resourcefulness and reliability of Osinbajo in helping to steer the ship of nation building under the leadership of President Buhari in times of peace and in times of turbulence as they often happen.

It's no exaggeration, too, that Osinbajo remains one of the most cerebral Nigerians to have occupied the position of Vice President within the context of the country's embrace of democracy. Although a pastor and a Christian, he has a firm belief of one Nigeria. He stands for all, despite our diverse religious and ethnic proclivities. Expecting him to do otherwise through low-priced antics is the highest level of madness.

- Abdul writes from the Federal University, Lokoja.

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