Tinubu Fires Back At Sun Newspaper, Blasts Saraki

Following a recent media report by a popular national daily newspaper which alleged that the former Lagos state governor and leader of the All Progressives Congress, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, had conspired with Senator Bukola Saraki to thwart the President Muhammadu Buhar-led administration, the APC leader has replied lambasting the media.


In a statement released on Sunday, October 11, signed by the chief of staff and special media adviser to the former Lagos boss, Sunday Dare, Tinubu said that the media, Daily Sun, took a sad excursion from journalism into the realm of gothic tales and political slander.

Dare said that Tinubu remains glued to the party decision and that the manner by which Saraki captured his current seat travestied party discipline stressing that it was a crass act of disloyalty showing that Saraki may have joined the APC on paper but has remained true to the malpractices and wrong aims of the reactionary Peoples Democratic Party in his soul.

The statement noted that those who sponsored the publication were only basing such on lies which it said intended to kill the ruling party’s unity and to slow down the Buhari administration’s strategic reform initiatives.

Daily Sun had in the publication on Saturday, October 10, said that security agencies have launched a surveillance ring around a lead­er of the ruling APC, Tinubu and others, including some members of the National Assembly, over an alleged plot against President Buhari.

It further said that intelligence reports had revealed that some state governors, party leaders and political godfathers whose nominees were dumped by the president for his preferred candidates had begun to unleash their goons in a well-coordinated media campaigns and groups’ protests against the president’s choice of ministerial nominees.

But Tinubu’s media spokesman stressed that the idea of an alleged conspiracy between Tinubu and Saraki against the president is an execrable lie.

He said that without any proof except the ‘veil of innuendo and some hatemongers’ masquerading as presidency sources, the story proclaims that the government is surveilling Asiwaju Tinubu because of his purported unhappiness about the ministerial list.

The spokesman said: “Too mischievous yet cowardly for their own good, the yarn-spinners at the Daily Sun neglect to precisely state what terrible thing they believe Tinubu to have done. This ambiguity is in part purposeful; their villainy seeks to place the innocent on edge and to cause those who must work together if the nation is to progress to begin to doubt the bona fides of each other.  With such a story, they hope to break the walls of confidence so that they may kindle mutual animus between the president and Tinubu. By getting the two to fight and weaken each other, they may then swoop down to destroy both.

“If this nation is to have more than a fleeting chance of escaping the quagmire into which years of PDP misrule have taken us, we cannot allow these regressive elements to deploy their cunning tricks to divide and pit progressive against progressive.

“Here, I will do those who inhabit the shadows of untruth a favour. I will state explicitly what they hoped to get the reader to infer. Their claim is that Tinubu has joined with Saraki to scuttle the president’s ministerial nominations. They have misfired.”

Dare explained that like the rest of Nigerians, that Tinubu also waited for the president to select his cabinet.

He said that now that the major selections have been made, that there is nothing more to do than congratulate the appointees and pray for them.

He said: “Their responsibilities are vast; the future of the nation now rests on their shoulders. The challenges before them are manifold and daunting. Those who want the best for Nigeria can only hope that these people succeed. The only intervention that Asiwaju Tinubu would make is one of encouragement. He would charge them to remain true to the progressive vision of the party and our president. None should allow themselves to be enticed to join league with those who would cast us back into the old mould of the Peoples Democratic Party governance: to pilfer, destroy and pillage.  Instead they should cohere faithfully to the enlightened programs and promises made by our party and this government.

“Other than voice this encouragement, Bola Tinubu will never say a negative word or lift a finger to forestall anyone’s approval before the Senate.

“For the record, the Buhari presidency was brought to life by the votes of millions of Nigerians who desire change. Such a collective and historic achievement is not one that anyone who worked to bring it to life would easily seek to deconstruct.

“This government is for the betterment of the people and the national purpose is bigger and more important that any individual’s desires.

“In our journey to national betterment, plans and policies will be made, and then amended. Mistakes will occur and then corrected.  Achievements will be had and replicated. Through it all, Asiwaju will remain true to the progressive ideals that fuelled the creation of the APC. He has devoted his political life to achieve what has been achieved. His heart is too much of the people and his mind too fixed on establishing a positive historic legacy to suffer such a cynical policy or engage in the destructive pettiness of which he is accused.

“He would not toss aside a lifetime’s labour because of an alleged slight and certainly would not join with Senator Saraki in stymying this government which may just be the nation’s last best chance to salvage itself.

“Given the exigencies of his position, President Buhari is placed in an unenviable position to some degrees. The duties of his office give him no choice; necessity constrains him, requiring that he discourse with Senator Saraki. As party leader, Asiwaju is free of such constraints. On these matters, I know where Asiwaju Tinubu stands. He remains glued to the party decision that the manner by which Saraki captured his current seat travestied party discipline. It was a crass act of disloyalty showing that Saraki may have joined the APC on paper but has remained true to the malpractices and wrong aims of the reactionary PDP in his soul.

“The alleged conspiracy is a figment. It takes at least two people to make a conspiracy. There has been no substantive communication between Asiwaju and Saraki since the latter decided to foul the integrity of the Senate and the party. To be truthful, I don’t think Saraki would care to hear what Asiwaju would have to say to him. He would admonish the Senator to treat the nomination process with dispatch, justice, fairness, transparency, and most of all with the greatest patriotism.

“He would counsel Saraki to shelve his personal situation for the moment to concentrate on the people’s business. It would be a grave mistake and abuse of office for Saraki to directly or indirectly inject his personal matter into the approval process. Saraki should not link the approval of a single Minister to his desire for extrajudicial treatment of his issues.

“If adhering to the decisions of the party, supporting the government’s progressive plank and working for the good of the people qualifies Tinubu for surveillance, and then he will accept that. However, we know that any such surveillance is not from state security organs. Such activity would come from the insecurity agencies of the PDP and its mercenary allies elsewhere who would seek to fragment the true core of the APC so that they may scuttle the Buhari reform program and return the nation to the mis-governance of the past. They hope to delude the APC into attacking itself. By so doing, they believe they can regain through stealth, the reins of government the people seized from them through elections. They seek to break the hearts and hopes of the people. Asiwaju Tinubu would never team with anyone to gain such an inhumane objective.

“While the Sun seems to have abandoned its journalistic norms, Tinubu shall remain true to his progressive ideals.”

Meanwhile, there are indications that the next batch of ministerial nominees to be named by President Muhammadu Buhari might not be out till December 2015.

The reason for this is that many top chieftains of the APC are unhappy with the president over the first batch of ministerial nominees that was recently released.