APC national leader, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, often chooses his words carefully.
So, when he goes on the record on occasion, we often do well to take notes.
Take for instance Tinubu’s recent comments.
While presenting a paper at the National Defence College in Abuja, Tinubu all but rubbished the economic policies of the Muhammadu Buhari administration.
Just in case you’ve been under some rock in the last three years, Tinubu was instrumental in forging the alliance that saw Buhari become President in 2015.
Tinubu also handpicked Yemi Osinbajo as Buhari’s running mate.
Tinubu’s Southwest base delivered its share of the votes that made a Muhammadu Buhari presidency possible.
Tinubu was the unseen hand as the APC defeated a formidable PDP which had promised not to relinquish power in another 60 years.
However, millions of Nigerians who voted for the joint APC ticket of Buhari/Osinbajo in the spring of 2015, appear to be losing faith and regretting their decision.
Buhari’s goodwill is fast eroding and it does appear as though even Tinubu has had it up to here.
Here’s Tinubu in his own words: “You have to spend yourself out of this recession and you cannot do that by consistently stifling the Banks of liquidity.
“Sincerely, where we see contradiction in the policy, we are going to talk about it. This is a nation of freedom, a democratic country, and this is our government, we are not like the other party who will invent one lie to lie, and to bury a lie and other mistakes.
“The monetary policy needs constant reviews and evaluations, and how it would affect the market and ordinary people as well, because if there is no liquidity in the market the Banks would price out the ordinary man, and inflation is growing at 18 percent”.
To be clear, a slew of Nigerians across the partisan divide have often flayed President Buhari’s economic policies, but to hear Tinubu do the same further exposes the lack of rigorous thinking underpinning the President’s macro and micro economic policies.
In the three paragraphs above, Tinubu laid bare most of what is wrong with the nation’s economic management under Buhari to wit: Yes, Buhari inherited an economy in peril but his actions thereafter worsened liquidity crisis and deepened a hemorrhaging credit crunch.
Tinubu was also not pleased with the power sector and stopped short of demanding that power, works and housing minister, Babatunde Fashola, be relieved of certain ministries.
“We have enough gas to fire this country’s electricity but there are so many complex issues attached together that this government must remove”, Tinubu said.
He added that: “We must work harder. If the workload is too heavy, we must re-examine it. If the privatisation is given to incapable hands, we must revisit it; this cannot lock down our future.”
Did you see that? “If the workload is too heavy, we must re-examine it”.
There, Fashola, is your sub!
If you read Tinubu’s words carefully and slowly; again and again, you’ll probably see that here is a man frustrated with the administration he helped propel to the center.
Because, if he wasn’t disappointed, Tinubu has all the access to the President to have aired his grievances behind the scenes.
Something isn’t right. Something just isn’t adding up.
In the past, there have been rumours suggesting that Tinubu and Buhari’s relationship may have been badly strained.
There have been rumours that the cabal calling the shots within the Buhari Presidency may have successfully shut out Tinubu from the scheme of things. Some say no one in the Buhari Presidency listens to Tinubu.
No gift of clairvoyance is needed to know that there may be some truth in those rumours.
Grapevine gist isn’t always fake gist.
Buhari’s appointments have been lopsided and Tinubu has in the past denounced some of the decisions of the APC–moves that may have been targeted at the President who is leader of the party in name and deed.
If you speak to both camps behind the scenes like this writer has, official sources will tell you that all is well between Tinubu and Buhari. Unofficial sources will say the opposite.
In there somewhere may just lie the answer.
But here’s what we can deduce in the interim–when Tinubu criticizes the economic policies of a government of which he’s part, he’s telling us something.
And we should read between the lines like we just did.
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