I must begin by saying that this is a most fortuitous piece, dictated by space constraints. I am not joining the Adedayo debate—not necessarily. I aim only to flag some of the contradictions provoked by it. First, and perhaps most crucially, who is an enemy of the government? I ask this question because those who conducted last week’s advocacy framed the discourse in this manner. They dubbed Adedayo an enemy of Buhari, Tinubu, etc. They refused to take their argument to a logical conclusion, namely that the writer, going by their logic, is in fact an “enemy” of Jonathan, Saraki, Atiku and others. As a matter of fact, he has been comparatively kinder to this administration than its predecessors. How is Adedayo a Saraki boy and even if he was, how and why does that make him an enemy? The Bible speaks of evil ones who “hate him that rebuketh in the gate.” If any critic tells the government the truth, just how is that critic an enemy? By the way, was Adedayo an enemy of Buhari/APC when he worked for Governor Abiola Ajimobi?
Dr. Adedayo is no more a Saraki boy than I am the chair of the Democrat caucus in the US Senate. Unlike Adedayo, I have actually met Saraki in person. I think that in holding out against the rabid onslaughts on the legislature from 2015 to 2019, Saraki demonstrated uncommon intelligence, grit and determination. I like him a lot. I am, if you prefer, pro-Saraki. I am not aware that Dr. Adedayo is. So is he my enemy, then? Notice that neither of us is a member of any party.
But then the question again: Is a critic an enemy and if so, are we now setting the following rules: 1. Government must only consider its yes-(wo)men for appointments. 2. Criticism is a crime 3. No member of the opposition parties must serve in any government? I raise these issues because there will be a tomorrow, and not even today has been decided yet. If we are setting rules, we ought to be clear on them. So then as an officeholder, no more calls to the opposition media, right?
The country is confused: the man who allegedly led hoodlums to steal the mace at the Red Chamber is now presiding on the same floor. A human being even accused Tribune of deleting Adedayo’s essays from its website! And worse still, some people actually believed him!!
- Dr. Awolaja is of the Tribune Editorial Board