By Tijani Olaegbe.
I want, at this early stage of my discourse, to borrow the words of John Adams who affirmed that,
“Facts are stubborn; and whatever may be our wishes, our inclinations or dictate of our passions, they cannot alter the State of facts and evidence…”.
Here we are at this moment; thanks to democracy and the rule of law on the long and tortuous journey to justice. The Supreme Court delivered its landmark ruling that has again restored the confidence of both the hopeless and helpless that doesn’t exclude the dregs of the society.
Unfortunately, this affirmation by the Supreme Court did not come until after twelve months of maneuvering and irresponsible delay tactics on the part of the so called “Youthful Speaker” and his brother, the almighty Clerk of the Kwara State House of Assembly.
In his reaction after the judgement, Dr. Ali Ahmad, an academic and shrewd parliamentarian, whose record in the 7th National Assembly has become reference point submitted and I quote, “Our democracy is too advanced to accommodate legislative lawlessness”. Himself, Dr Ali Ahmad, the immediate past Speaker of the 8th Kwara State House of Assembly, did not hesitate to call the spade its actual name by referring to such legislative misdemeanor as “Legislative rascality.”
The words of the ex-honourable member of the 7th National Assembly and the Speaker of the 8th Assembly in Kwara, adequately addressed the unfortunate trauma Honourable Agboola Jimoh, nay, the whole Ilorin South State Constituency, unjustly went through under a misfit decorated as speaker.
Of particular interest, and why I am so infuriated about Honourable Yakubu Danladi’s anti democratic legislation is the trending issue of youth for governance. Some say youth should takeover now etc. Whatever way this is framed, the message had been delivered loud and clear. That age is the reason for bad governance and underdevelopment of the country.
But our experience in Kwara State today called for a rethink and a proper examination of the demand as put up by the youthful Speaker, most importantly, the absolute belief in only youth can midwife good governance in Nigeria.
Perhaps, I need to categorically assert here that I have nothing against youths taking over the mantle of leadership in this country. Absolutely none. But my position is that, governance is much more than just mouthing age, age and age.
A cursory analysis of the composition of AA administration reflects more than 95% youths, whether in the executive or legislative arm. As plausible as this seems, what measure of advantage is discernable from this administration? In fact, the State has never had it so clueless, so frustrating, so embarrassing, so disappointing, so disorderly and, above all, so hopeless.
Of what use is a government that failed to construct policy proposals to end mass poverty or reduce unemployment among our teaming youths? Is it not ironic for a AA that parades youths in his administration without placing primacy on strategic development of youths?
Therefore, it is not just age, but change in our value orientation with ability, capacity, versatility and exceptional academic exposure to bring about transformational politics. That is to evolve new political order or ideology as alternative to old order.
So, the youth we need in Kwara State is NOT the type we have currently as Speaker, the Clerk and even the crop of members of present House of Assembly who are ineffective, inept, docile, and who could not advise the leadership appropriately.
The boat of the State is sinking, no legislation against bad governance and our honourable members are there in the house, what are they legislating?
However, what makes a leader consist of a wide range of attributes but among them are putting Kwara State first above any others, being patriotic, being a unifier rather than emphasize on what puts us apart. What is much more important is the soul of Kwara State and how to transform the socioeconomic development of the State for the benefit and good of all. Of course not excluding investors.
I want to round up my position with Theodore Roosevelt’s point of view that, “Patriotism means to stand by the country. It does not mean to stand by the President or any other public official, save exactly to the degree in which himself stands by the country. It is patriotic to support him insofar as he efficiently serves the country. It is unpatriotic not to oppose him to the exact extent that by inefficiency or otherwise he fails in his duty to stand by the country. In either event, it is unpatriotic not to tell the truth, whether about the President or anyone else”.
Is Honourable Yakubu Danladi patriotic in the handling of Hon. Agboola Jimoh’s issue? Most especially, when the only document that qualifies a candidate for admission into the legislative Assembly is certificate of return? Moreso when it is Agboola Jimoh that produced the last certificate of return. Is Honourable Yakubu Danladi not doing the bidding of his principal and party as a result of the position Honourable Agboola is going to hold in the house as a minority member? Posterity will sure judge the youthful but bootlicking Speaker.
DISCLAIMER: All views expressed on our opinion page are those of the writer and do not represent the position of INSIDER or any of its reporters/editors.