Nigeria: Unveiling Their 'Excellencies' the Elected Dictators

9 October 2019

When kidnappers overrun a state and there is need to improve the security of lives, your governors are powerless. They complain that they do not control law enforcement. When ritualists take over, they feign impotence on the argument that they are not the commanders-in-chief. If Ali Modu Sheriff had been C-in-C, he would have destroyed his friends, Boko Haram before it became a continental scourge.

Our poor governors are powerless where it matters most - improving the lives of the citizenry. They'll spare nothing to protect themselves and their privileged friends. With the exception of Abdollari Gandollar who controls Hisbah, the agency that prohibits the sale of alcohol but survives on the VAT derived from its sales, governors feign powerlessness.

Governors are powerless until you say or write something that rankles them. Since Muhammadu Buhari opened his own Media Centre, most governors have opened a social media-monitoring unit for the sole purpose of sniffing out posts or speeches that rob off on the inflated ego of their excellencies 'elected' dictators. Illegal detention and long jail term becomes the temporary abode of anyone challenging the mainly indolent, incredulously clueless and administratively hopeless governors.

Ahmed Nasir El-Rufai does not fully fall into this category. Cantankerous, yes, troublesome, yes, but Kaduna residents swear their happiness on their diminutive dictator. El-Rufai says he doesn't care what anyone writes about his person, but would go to any length to pursue anyone that writes, says or posts anything that threatens the fragile peace in his state. Believe him. He once crossed borders to pay bandits to keep off his state.

The Kaduna monarch is not your run of the mill politrician. He earned his first class as a surveyor when ABU couldn't have granted Buhari a degree by affidavit. He is intelligent, suave and active. He has a caustic tongue if you ask President Gridlock Jones. He'll heckle and hound anyone he hates, and he has the capacity to hate with the same passion with which he loves his harem. But if you fall into El-Rufai's trap, just dig a hole, jump in it and bury yourself. El-Rufai would get you arrested and sentenced to mosquito if you cross his line. Ask Ibrahim Elzakzaky! Ask Audu Maikori, founder of Chocolate City.

Threatening to use the ruse of law against opponents, the murus-exponent enjoys notoriety. Caveat Emptor, Nasir is very ambitious. He wants to rule Naija hopefully by the current system of electoral fraud. Allow that at the peril of your freedom of expression and association. El-Rufai moved from frontally attacking Muhammadu Buhari to genuflecting for him at every occasion. He's been known to take the NADECO route to exile if things get super hot.

While Nasir belongs to the ruining APC, his counterpart in Cross Rivers Bengioushuye Ayade belongs to the PDP, the other side of the political cloven-hoof shitstem of politics that permits systemic looting. You hardly hear anything good coming from Cross Rivers under Ayade because, generally, the guy is sleeping on duty. Disrupt Ayade's sleep and you find out why they say 'let sleeping dogs lie'.

That was how journalist Agba Jalingo first ended up in detention, then later in jail - reporting sleaze in a microfinance bank in a state in which Ayade is governor by electoral duplicity. For that, Jalingo was media-shamed by the police, paraded in court in shackles and manacles reminiscent of the slave era. Now Ayade can continue his somnambulism while his critic faces 'treason'.

By the way, under Buhari and his commandos, it is now treason to report activities of Boko Haram! When they need to silence their opponents, state governors know how to make security chiefs obey their orders. Of course, Ayade couldn't even pretend to be a gentleman; he is a shameless narcissist.

Atiku Bagudu, the languorously chubby governor of Kebbi State carries the current can of governor ludicrous and dictator sublime. Bagudu and his wife, Zainab Shinkafi fit each other. Bagudu was named in a US State Department report into a $480 million heist carried out under Muhammadu Buhari's hero, Sani Abacha. Yet, he rose to become a sinnator and garlanded governor under a party that fights kwarrupshion. In that capacity Shinkafi detained a six-month-old baby and her parents for 13 days for the offense of demanding the payment of their father's gratuity. The detainees are now in court demanding compensation for the tort of illegal detention.

Bagudu's party, recently suspended Shafi'u Jauro, a local government chairman who criticised the alleged massive corruption characterizing his administration. It is only in Naija that someone like Bagudu would be addressed as His Excellency! There's nothing excellent about indecency, sleaze and dictatorship. When Bagudu locked out a female chief judge, his wife Zainab wrote about the 'undeserved insults on my husband'. When I become the Governor of Wokun-je Nation, I won't pick up the same title of Excellency. Excellency and roguery are not synonymous.

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