Is Tinubu fit enough to run this country? — Abiodun Nkwocha

Is Tinubu fit enough to run this country? — Abiodun Nkwocha

Are you alarmed? During the weekend, I watched a video purported to be part of a campaign manifesto Bola Ahmed Tinubu was giving somewhere.

I say purportedly just to be careful. As technology advances, it is amazing what can be doctored up.

If this video was in fact an actual incident that occurred then wahala dey. In the video, Tinubu was speaking and mid-sentence; he seemed to have lost coherent speech and slurred out words no one could make out. The video went viral. What the heck is going on? He was talking and suddenly his words came out in warbled, indecipherable sounds.

Fear struck me.

Okay. Maybe I am being a little bit dramatic here but I won’t lie, I was concerned. Tinubu can actually win this election. I say this because we all know how elections work in Nigeria. We know that it isn’t really a matter of what the majority want. It is about how adept a politician is at working the political intricacies that exist; negotiating with various political blocks to ensure that votes are delivered in the favour of the politician.

Because of this, Tinubu is well positioned to win the race.

PDP says Tinubu is a betrayer

There are several things that are to his advantage.

  1. He is a member of the ruling party: I don’t know what his popularity within the party is but there is no doubt about how influential he is. Say what you may but fact remains that Tinubu was instrumental in instating President Buhari. He delivered the West to Buhari. Buhari who was no doubt popular in the north did not have the same acceptance in the West. Tinubu gave the political machinery at his disposal and the rest is history.
  2. He had negotiated to rule after Buhari. Like I said earlier, elections in Nigeria are not won by ordinary popularity. Negotiations happen behind closed doors. It is rumoured that Tinubu gave his support to Buhari so that it could be reciprocated. It is give and take. I believe this is the whole crux of insisting that it is his turn i.e ‘Emi lo kan’.
  3. Tinubu is insanely rich. In democracies all over the world, deep pockets are an advantage. This is more so in Nigeria. For Tinubu to have won the APC primaries, I would like to think that his wealth came to play. Let me not say more than that.
  4. Tinubu is old in the game. I am not speaking about age. He is clearly the oldest candidate but that doesn’t really matter. Tinubu has walked through the political corridors of Nigeria for decades. I recall a picture of a young Tinubu flanking the late Moshood Abiola. Someone that has been in the game and has been active both in governance and in king making has a lot of advantage.

What am I saying? Tinubu can win this. It isn’t farfetched to see this.

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But is he fit enough?

He seems to have aged rapidly over the last five years. Physically, no one can deny how feeble he can seem. There are so many videos of him having difficulty with stairs and needing assistance. It doesn’t stop there. There is the verbal incoherence and many gaffes that have happened. I have seen a couple of videos in which people were reminding him of the name of his political party.

We suppose dey fear small.

But having said that, this is our political season. Remember when it seemed like Buhari had a terminal ailment when he was campaigning? How he forgot the name of his running mate and how much of a big deal that was? Well, eight years later who is finishing his presidency without so much as a stooped back? He looks healthier than he was before he started.

It is actually clever of Tinubu’s opponents to make a big deal out of every little thing that is out of place. Nobody wants a frail and senile president.

The wahala is that even members of APC seem to think he is declining in health. I watched a video of Nasir El Rufai (the governor of Kaduna State) on Twitter yesterday. He clearly stated (in Hausa) that Tinubu was of a certain age and he is experiencing the decline that comes with aging. He thought Tinubu should allow younger people to contest but he said Tinubu was insisting.

But we all know he won’t.

This is probably in the last few points of his bucket list.

  • Become the president of Nigeria.

Nothing will stop him.

It is well.

Have a lovely week, folks.

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