Bola Tinubu: The Awo's renaissance

I am a committed devotee of the ideologies of the late sage - Chief Obafemi Awolowo; that great emancipator of poor, maligned and oppressed Nigerians. Though he died not well understood and misrepresented by the elites who kept our people under bondage, he remains in the hearts of many conscious Nigerians as the most astute and progressive driven political leader, Nigeria never had as president.

Awo will forever be remembered as the genius who gave politics a meaning in Nigeria. His failed presidential ambitions and subsequent death robbed Nigeria of its assured growth and economic advancement. Fortunately today, there seems to be someone who revitalizes the Awo's renaissance in our present political dispensation; that man is no other than Bola Ahmed Tinubu.

Asiwaju Tinubu, former governor of Lagos state, is a chip off the old block of Obafemi Awolowo. Though these men are generations apart, they evidently shared the same zeal for service to the people. Ahmed Tinubu has gone some steps further by making himself more liberal and less rigid. Awo's rigidness his critics claimed hampered his legendary heights in our national politics.

Those who accuse Tinubu of expanding his political sphere in an attempt to capture all Yoruba speaking states, are only trying to belittle his political acceptability across the nation. Alhaji Bola Tinubu commands a lot of admirers among yorubas and non yorubas alike. His outstanding administrative sagacity and achievements as Lagos states governor for eight years; and the subsequent election of his party's candidate – Governor Babatunde Fashola by the good people of Lagos state to continue with the good works of his predecessor, only prove to all doubting Thomas that Tinubu indeed delivered good services during his stewardship as governor; and that Lagosians are forever graceful to him for his leadership qualities.

Today, Alhaji Ahmed Tinubu represents the progressive ideological stance that was fast dwindling as a result of the demise of the great Awo. He with very few comrades are presently the only ones flying the hopes for a better Nigeria. With every leading voices in the politics of Nigeria aligning with the PDP for personal gains, Tinubu has remained consistency in the struggle that Nigerians deserve a better deal from their leaders.

Tinubu should not be narrowed to a tribal leader, or one aspiring to be; though he is undoubtedly the new political touch bearer of the Yoruba race. After a long uninspiring leadership in most of the states in the south west zone of the country, it won't be bad if the people are given some relief come 2011 with new sets of leaders who underwent the tutelage of this great man – Asiwaju Bola Tinubu.

A great leader leads by example; even the diehard critics of this amiable leader of men cannot fault his leadership and humane qualities. Despite Tinubu's influence in contributing to the victory of some of his associates in the polls, he is not known to interfere in their duties. As a loyal party man, Alhaji Tinubu is a great respecter of party's rules and regulation. Little wonder, he once abandoned a trip to Benin, Edo state to join the dynamic governor of the state in an open political rally in support of ‘one man one vote'; simply because his party was not comfortable with the presence of a former military dictator, who annulled the freest election so far in our political expedition.

Ahmed Bola Tinubu's politics are issue based. He is more concerned with the welfare of the people than the comfort and cosy of political office. When his colleagues were picking forms to run for the senate, Tinubu in a rare leadership fashion choose to support those he believed shared his passion for constructive and progressive people oriented leadership. Refusing to play even the role of a godfather to them, rather he gave them the political space to deliver good governance to the people.

The people of Lagos state can attest to the wonders being performed by the protégés of this great leader, Bola Tinubu. Just like Awo, Tinubu have great wisdom in sighting and sourcing credible people to assist him in marshalling his great plans for Nigerians.

Zoning today has become a lethal weapon used to deny Nigeria of forward looking and constructive service delivery leadership. Why should someone with great and tested leadership potentials like Asiwaju Bola Tinubu be hampered by zoning from seeking the presidency of Nigeria, just because Chief Obasanjo a fellow Yoruba man, whose eight years as president was a disgrace to his race has exhausted their slot for now? Painfully, Nigeria and Nigerians are going to be the losers.

Lagos state felts the sweetness of Tinubu's charismatic leadership and are forever grateful; the people of the southwest geopolitical zone are equally pleased and are proud of this great son of theirs, who is reawakening the good and glorious era of Awolowo and his contemporaries in old western region. As 2011 beckons on Nigeria, it will be to our collective gains as Nigerians to taste from the vast intellects of this wise and principled nationalist – Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu.

We missed Awo's economy wizardry and foresightedness; we missed Zik's nationalistic instincts; we missed Aminu Kano's undying love for the downtrodden; and Ahmadu Bello's leadership charisma. Now we have a man(Asiwaju Bola Tinubu) who is a combination of the virtues of these great men; it will be our national tragedy if we miss his service at our country's apex office come 2011.

Olurotimi Adeola

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