Drama As New Aso Rock Cabal Emerges, ‘Akande, Osoba, Others Treated Like Outsiders’

Drama As New Aso Rock Cabal Emerges, ‘Akande, Osoba, Others Treated Like Outsiders’

Close allies, party elders, and traditional rulers, among other stakeholders, are reportedly expressing discontent with President Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s style of governance and some of his policy decisions.

The alleged inability of his allies and party elders to have access to the President, advise him on their observations, or even register their displeasures has fueled insinuations that President Tinubu might be going through a similar scenario as his predecessor, former President Muhammadu Buhari, whose government was allegedly hijacked by a cabal, which controlled access to him.

According to The Guardian, a series of policies introduced by President Tinubu since assuming office have left Nigerians facing varying degrees of economic hardships, with feelers from Tinubu’s allies indicating that they believe there is a compelling need for him to cautiously begin to look inward to engage people and assuage their pains.

One of the political blocs said to be discontented with Tinubu’s style of appointment is the Southwest and Northwest Muslim stakeholders in the ruling party, who feel they are being short-changed despite their votes giving Tinubu victory in the presidential poll.

Speaking on a new cabal in Aso Villa, which determines who gets what and who sees the President, party sources close to the Presidency told The Guardian that this situation might be more devastating to governance than what operated under the immediate past administration.

The publication noted that there are discussions within the APC about the current disposition of the likes of former Governors of Osun and Ogun states, Bisi Akande and Aremo Segun Osoba, other elder statesmen and Yoruba sons and daughters, who served in the immediate past government, to President Tinubu’s administration.

While some have deliberately kept a distance from the government, sources close to the party said Akande and Osoba and others considered Tinubu’s ‘Man Friday’ are today more or less treated like outsiders under the incumbent administration.

Akande, perceived as one of the closest allies to the President, is alleged to have lamented to party stalwarts on how difficult it has been for him to assess the Villa, let alone have the opportunity to discuss issues of importance or convey the feelings of Nigerians to Tinubu in recent times.

A party source claimed that Akande was not carried along about Tinubu’s decision to back former Governor of Kano State, Umar Ganduje, as APC’s national chairman and the selection of Ajibola Basiru as the party’s national secretary.

Also, Osoba, who happens to be one of the first elders to commend President Tinubu for having the boldness to remove fuel subsidy, may have also withdrawn.

The former Ogun State governor is said to be finding it difficult to fathom how the economic situation is turning out today after the removal of fuel subsidy.

On the other hand, members of the Lagos State APC Governor’s Advisory Council (GAC) are also reeling in pain, not just over appointments but the way the country is running. One of them lamented how his children asked, “Is this all that your Tinubu has to offer?”

According to one of the party faithful, because most elders have benefited unduly, “they cannot face the President to tell him the truth.”

Another member of APC, however, called for more time for President Tinubu, saying, “It is too early to criticize his government based on ethnic sentiments or economic performance.” He said though it may be true that several members of APC were disillusioned about Tinubu’s appointments, which, according to him, favoured more Christians than Muslims, “they are not enough reasons to fault or condemn Mr. President.”

He added: “The issue is that Tinubu is only trying to run away from the Muslim-Muslim ticket blackmail. But if you do a critical observation, the Southwest and Northwest Muslims, whose votes made Tinubu president, are really not benefitting, unlike the South-South and Southeast Christians, who contributed less to Tinubu’s victory. It is unimaginable that Tinubu offered the Ministry of Works and FERMA to Southeast despite the kind of antagonism he faced from that region.”

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