Osinbajo: Who is Scared of a Professor?, By Eniola Opeyemi

Twice God says that in King David he had found ‘a man after my own heart’ (1 Samuel 13:14, Acts 13:22). David was one of God’s favourites. David was a man who had a fondly relationship with God, and was constantly seeking his will for his life. Same can be said of Professor Yemi Osinbajo.

The rise and rise of Professor Yemi Osinbajo is no doubt a reflection of God’s blessings on him. His hardwork and loyalty, giving hope not only to the academia but also to professionalism in the nation, his service and art of management are fruits of this blessing. Nigeria’s political terrain has harbored the best script writers, actors and actresses whose precedents have put the nation as one of the most politically tensed countries in the world. Yet Osinbajo stands out in the midst of this pile as distinct and worthy.

Professor Oluyemi “Yemi” Oluleke Osinbajo (born 8 March 1957) is a Nigerian lawyer and politician who is the current Vice President of Nigeria, and has been in office since 29 May 2015. He is also a Senior Advocate of Nigeria, Professor of Law and until his inauguration as Vice President, a Senior Partner with SimmonsCooper Partners, a commercial law practice.

Osinbajo is a key player in the President Muhammadu Buhari’s led administration. He has played the lead as the head of the Economic Management Team and saved the country from a recession and the crisis that ensued, putting the economy on track; he has also been instrumental to ensuring sanity and peace in the Niger Delta – he made shuttle trips to the region to engage with its leaders and call for peace in the region. 

The Redeemed Christian Church of God Pastor does not shied away from difficult jobs. His visits to the Niger Delta region in the heat of militancy spoke volumes of his charisma and commitment to duty. His narrative was that the young men in the region must be “properly engaged” to stop them falling into the easy preys of being recruited by militant groups or participating in illegal refining of crude oil.

Nigeria’s economy is struggling to become less dependent on oil — which makes up more than 70 percent of GDP — while various security threats continue to plague the country. These include the Boko Haram insurgency in the northeast: the group has been largely contained by Nigerian and regional military forces, but continues to launch guerrilla attacks and suicide bombings on a not-infrequent basis.

According to CNN, “Nigeria, Africa’s most populous nation, improved its ranking on the latest World Bank ease of doing business index.”

The country now ranks 131 on the World Bank’s Doing Business 2020 index, released Wednesday. The West African nation moved up 15 places from its 2019 spot and has been tagged as one of the most improved economies in the world for running a business. These have been possible through the relentless efforts of the Vice President.

If we are to go by the records, Vice President Osinbajo deserves our gratitude and not humiliation.

Nonetheless, the cabals influence in Nigeria’s politics cannot be underrated as they perform more functions behind the scene than most elected and appointed officials, some of these cabals surrounding the President have constantly choosen to put the Vice-President under their control, owing to avoidance of seeing him overshadow their prowess in the affairs of the nation. But rarely would you see Osinbajo comment on this, showing maturity, professionalism and the figure he presents in the church, consequently, the vice – president has continually paid his loyalty to his boss which has paid off with his popularity waxing stronger in Nigeria’s political scene.

Just recently, the powers around the President showed to have something hidden as regards the Vice – President. In every political and non – political setting, it is expected that the deputy acts in the absence of his/her boss, this was however not the scene here.

It has been said that Abba Kyari, the Chief of Staff to the President has been deciding all that happens in the Presidency, including the exclusion of the First Lady, Mrs. Aisha Buhari, from getting closer to her husband to render necessary advise.

As reported, just recently in Kastina, the Chief of staff was cautioned for breaking the protocol in a programme the Vice-President attended.

The latest of it all is the sacking of some of the Vice President’s aides. An online newspaper, Daily Nigerian, had reported that about 35 of the aides were sacked.

While clarifications are needed as to the relationship between the Chief of staffs and these allegations, it will be good that a truce is sought and made, and any belligerence laid to rest in the best interest of the country.

Nigeria would be great irrespective of the tribe or powers that make up its leadership. There is no need to be scared of a Professor.

Eniola Opeyemi writes from Lagos State

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