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Today is Yahaya Bello, Tomorrow It May Be You

by Silverbird News24




Certain significances disclosed by the ongoing faceoff between former Governor of Kogi State, Yahaya Bello, and the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, should give us of the All Progressives Congress, APC, much course for concern as a party.

While we most certainly do not, cannot, must not and will not condone corruption in any of its manifestations, we mustn’t give the impression that as a party, we are so lawless as to condone illegalities under the guise of fighting corruption.

While the EFCC is presently canvassing the disgracefully pedestrian position that its faceoff with Yahaya Bello is a case of corruption fighting back, it is actually a case of corruption pretending to be fighting corruption on the part of the EFCC.

Every human being in this world, indeed, absolutely every person, citizen or foreigner, even illegal alien, is presumed innocent until proven guilty.

Former Governor Yahaya Bello is no exception to this universal rule of the presumption of innocence and it is most shameful that such a resourceful and contributory stakeholder in our party should be abandoned by certain members of our party at this moment of challenge, even to the extent of a number of lightweight quantities in the party baying for his blood and calling for his head.

We are a party and only strong to the extent that we stand together.

That we ought to rally round our brother, Yahaya Adoza Bello, cannot amount to endorsing corruption especially when it is now most profusely obvious that he is the victim of a witch-hunt being orchestrated by well-known adversaries.

It is crystal clear that while the EFCC is trying to hoodwink the public into buying the utterly nonsensical notion that it is fighting corruption, it is actually just a pretense in furtherance of a personal vendetta on behalf of Bello’s political enemies.

In the process, key persons in our party’s government have embarked on the bastardisation of our institutions of state.

We are now faced with the utter and most shameful embarrassment of the lawyer to an opposition candidate we thoroughly defeated in Kogi being the same lawyer the power drunk and woefully unprofessional Chairman of the EFCC retained to hound, harass our fellow party man.

As if this was not already disgusting enough, the opposition Senator from Kogi Central now even has the nerve to be harassing her former Governor and the first Ebira man to become a Governor.

What impression are we giving to our party supporters?

That we are a platform of backstabbers and traitors who cannot stand with a comrade in trouble?

That we are just some aggregation of cutthroats, in short a coven of users and dumpers of our most able, capable and reliable stalwarts?

We are playing with fire if we continue on this most politically imbecilic path.

Why is the Chairman of the EFCC so carried away?

Instead of sending a man, who happens to be a former state Governor a proper documented invitation, you call him on the phone?

Seeking to tarnish his reputation, you accuse the sitting Governor of Kogi State, Usman Ododo, of smuggling his predecessor out of his residence only for you to then confess that you, yourself, was the one who offered to smuggle him through the backdoor into your office!

For God’s sake, we are old, experienced and knowledgeable enough to know a shake down when we see one.

You break the law by violating a restraining order of court; you file a notice of appeal out of time, and, you proceed to leak documents that are years old as if they are new document, none of which, prima facie, are proof of crime but proof of payment of school fees!

If I were a superstitious person, I would surmise that Yahaya Bello had esoterically remoted the EFCC into making a complete mockery of itself by most enthusiastically undermining what is obviously the contrived case it claims to have against the former Kogi Governor and playing into his hands.

What did our brother, Yahaya even do to warrant this degree of hatred, conspiracy and harassment?

When it mattered most, Yahaya stood shoulder to shoulder with us and manifestly delivered for our candidate, our party and President, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu.

The excesses and shenanigans of the EFCC in this matter, as with many others, have been a total travesty against our brother and fellow party man, Yahaya Adoza Bello.

Yahaya Bello delivered an entire state to us while those presently hounding him lost their states, local government areas, wards and even polling units, including those right in front of their houses!

We would do well to remember we won the last election with less than 40 percent of the vote.

That is the lowest margin of victory since 1999 and it is testament that, for some reason, God wanted President Bola Tinubu to govern this country and take it to its rightful place in the international arena.

Despite Naira scarcity, in spite of fuel scarcity, and, in defiance to betrayal from those Asiwaju had only always shown love to and solidarity with, we still won!

Anyone who cannot see the will of God in such an outcome cannot see.

The Tinubu administration is one that just has to succeed or God help us as a nation.

The worst possible thing to do in politics, as in life, in general, is to get carried away by the euphoria of power and to forget that power is intrinsically and invariably transient.

The best possible time to stand together as one in any endeavour or undertaking is always.

We can neither afford to give the impression that we are willing to throw the ablest contributors to our hard won victory under the bus nor should we tolerate the utter political stupidity of frustrating key members and stakeholders out of our party.

No one is asking for Yahaya Bello to be placed above the law; what we must all insist on is what the law itself compels which is that the law can only be enforced according to law.

Former Governor Yahaya Bello is presumed innocent until proven guilty and, as his political comrades, it is both within our rights, under the law, and indeed, our obligation, under all norms of morality, to stand with him at this hour of his challenge.

Today, it is Yahaya Bello but tomorrow it could be any of us.

In English, it is said that “a word is enough for the wise”; in Urhobo, we simply say “half a word is enough for the wellborn”.

Onokpasa, a lawyer, writes from Abuja.

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