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2023 PRESIDENCY: Bola Tinubu & The Best By Kassim Afegbua.

Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu.

They have tried all the gimmicks. They have explored all manner of shenanigans. They have rained abuses. They have cursed. They have sang choruses of condemnation. A section of the print and electronic media have been bought over to do untoward damage;  but like a man who is destined for greatness, Asiwaju Tinubu soars higher and soldiers on, with exponentially increasing popularity, amassing numerous endorsements across the country. They are plotting their plot, but Allah is the ultimate planner.

They have become Asiwaju's personal physicians. They pronounce strange ailments in connection with him which are actually alien to this leader of men. Since he returned from Saudi Arabia on the 2nd of January the man has been campaigning, criss-crossing Nigeria, and reaching out to the voters, non-stop; yet in their wishful thinking, they would prefer for him to break down, to underscore their satanic pronouncements. Tinubu remains standing!!!

Short of further skits to mar him, they rose from their slumber and put up a notice that Asiwaju Tinubu wants a new wife from Katsina state. They even want to set his peaceful home on fire and distract his eyes from the ball. But the man has kept his eyes straight, laughing at their folly and re-affirming his undying love for his wife, Oluremi who has remained rock-solid behind him for several decades.

They call him blablablublu, they churn out several anecdotes to undermine him, and set him on the collision course with President Buhari; but the man, like a BAT with nine lives, negotiates every plot unfazed, and even stronger waxed. They simply can't understand how come his name has remained the currency of the moment. Asiwaju Tinubu is a man of many parts, many ideas, and a lot of understanding of the delicate balance in the country and its intricate logic. Asiwaju Tinubu has become the "ebora" of the moment, difficult to pin down, uneasy to nail down.

They called him all sorts of unprintable names; a druggist, unschooled mind, and the like. They assumed the position of his personal physician, used their mouths to run him down, but Tinubu remains uncowered by their whims and caprices.

He's still the man to beat in the coming general election. Like a mango tree with several fruits ready for harvest, it must pay homage to all manner of pebbles to pluck the fruits. A barren mango tree never attracts such attention. Such is the way of life.

Just a lesson about life's inherent contradictions. Tinubu is breaking new grounds, gaining traction, enriching the discourse, and attracting commitments that have placed him far above every other contestant. A strategist extra-ordinaire, Tinubu has become the real issue in our current socio-political discourse.

They simply can't understand his popularity everywhere he goes; North, South, East and West, it is all about Asiwaju Tinubu and he preaches his message of renewed hope, reaching the grassroots with easy access.

They conspired to go cashless, thinking that that would slow him down and or cripple his campaigns; but the BAT with nine lives, put the situation to best use, and came out stronger. He stood with the masses and never genuflected to the powers-that-be to massage their conspiratorial ego. He was clear about his stand and the dangers of going cashless in one fell swoop without the basic infrastructure.

He spoke about the economics of a cashless economy and what needed to be done to cushion the effect particularly in an economy that was already showing signs of debilitation. His party members understood him perfectly and stood by him; while the cabal were leaking their wounds. Atiku Abubakar, his opponent of no consequence, was holding the lower rung of the ladder, to support such a hellish policy; thinking that would rein in support for him; but he got his fingers burnt.

It is now difficult for him to pull back. The people, including the Council of State, all supported a further extension of the use of the old Naira notes, to cushion the wanton effect of an abrupt policy that befell the society. A lot of Nigerians saw the desperation of the PDP candidate, and also witnessed the deliberate silence of Peter Obi, who would not join the discussion. Asiwaju Tinubu came out on a stronger pedestal, and became the toast of the moment.

It is difficult to stop an idea whose time has come. Let everyone know that Asiwaju Tinubu didn't just jump into the presidential contest; he strategically prepared himself to take this nation to higher heights, having had interest in leading this great nation for several years; for long now, he ensured he took the right step at the right time, to push his aspiration. He supported President Buhari in 2015, and supplied his Vice President; now in 2023, the time is ripe for him to contest.

That is what is called strategic positioning and planning. Unlike perennial aspirants of at least 30 years, Tinubu is an ideas man who understands the gains of strategic planning. They have tried to "butcher" him, using media outlets that have sold their consciences, but Asiwaju Tinubu remains uncowered and undaunted.

Every day, they come up with one argument or the other to demonise and devil him, but the man moves higher and is better positioned to grab the number one slot. In Borno state, it was like a hurricane, sweeping across the state. In Sokoto, it was a similar experience, ditto for Oyo, and all other states.

Asiwaju Tinubu has become a movement; a moving train that can no longer be stopped by deliberate shenanigans. They said President Buhari was not supporting him, until the President came out with advertorials, endorsing the APC candidate, and urging his supporters to vote for him. Asiwaju Tinubu is coasting to victory; and by Saturday the 25th February the die will be cast. 

The 2023 presidential race is assuredly a contest between Asiwaju Tinubu and the rest of them. My crystal ball has revealed to me in a very lugubrious manner that Asiwaju Tinubu will carry the day in the first ballot.

Those who are expecting a re-run, had better forget that expensive joke. The outcome will be in this order; Tinubu (1st), Atiku (distant 2nd), Obi (3rd) and Kwankwaso (4th). Of all the candidates contesting, Asiwaju Tinubu has the best and robust utility-driven renewed hope agenda, anchored on realistic policy plans, to confront the current challenges facing our nation. He displays a rich understanding of the issues at hand and parades testaments as a tested problem solver, to arrest the drift.

They said he wasn't coherent and cohesive, but when he faced the Nigeria Economic Summit Group panelists, he held them spellbound. He did not only show mastery of the issues in discourse, his delivery was superbly rich and fecund. Great men are those who think outside the box to provide solutions to challenges, or convert challenges to opportunities.

As a futuristic thinker, Asiwaju Tinubu knows what to do in the present circumstance to rally round all the centripetal and centrifugal forces to make progress. He represents a bold call to take right and hard decisions for the overall good of the polity. His courage is a resource.

His strategy is an ingredient, his capacity as a team player, matchless in modern day problem solving. On Saturday the 25th of February Asiwaju Tinubu's election will actually be a referendum that will mark the beginning of building a national cohesion through robust engagement, healthy dialogue and constructive bargaining.

By this time next Tuesday, I should have cause to celebrate his victory.


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