There is nothing new under the sun, goes a popular saying. In fact, the more things seem to change, the more they appear the same. From time immemorial, some people have spoken evil of leadership, cast aspersions on them, and generally portrayed themselves as scum of the earth. No matter how a country loves its leader, there will naturally be those that the Good Book calls “filthy dreamers” who “despise dominion, and speak evil of dignities.” That is why as spokesman to President Muhammadu Buhari, I never respond to such people. Their type would always be around.
President Buhari has been indisposed since the beginning of the year. It is human, and presidents, despite their elevated status, remain human. If there is anybody who considers himself 100 percent healthy, or who bears what William Shakespeare calls “a charmed life,” let that person stand up to be identified. All mortals are doomed to sickness, they can recover, and they can die. That is the truth that has been internalized by millions of people praying for the recovery of our President. And that is where the shallowness, vacuousness, and hollowness of people who wish the President dead, and carry unfounded rumors, is on stark display. Filthy dreamers. They speak evil of dignities, and despise dominion. But we forgive them, for they know not what they do. When President Buhari returns (as God would make him do) where would they hide their faces? In shame.
Now, I started by saying we would always have scumbags around. It is inevitable. They are the descendants of Shimei, the son of Gera, whom I want to introduce to you now.
Who is Shimei? Well, I met him on the pages of the Good Book, and he bears striking similitude to some people in our country today. The evil wishers, the hate monger, and those who spend their days conjecturing tragedy for leadership.
Absalom, the son of King David, had led an insurrection against his father. And the king of Israel fled, with some of his supporters in tow. As David got to a place called Bahurim, the Holy Bible records that Shimei, the son of Gera, a man of the family of Saul, came out, and started cursing the fleeing king. You don’t kick a man that is down, goes a saying, but Shimei not only cursed David, he also threw dust and stones at him. It was a show of shame.
David had succeeded Saul as king of Israel. And Shimei was from the family of Saul (read, People’s Democratic Party, PDP). Shimei hadn’t forgotten the bloody nose the family of Saul got, when the kingship was taken away from them, and given to David. So when the latter got into a time of travail, no pity at all from people still smarting from bloody noses.
The All Progressives Congress (APC), inspired by Muhammadu Buhari, halted the 60-year pipe dream of PDP at the polls in 2015. Has the latter forgotten? No, they won’t forget till forever. But so much is the animus, the antipathy towards the President that they wish him dead. While millions of Nigerians are praying, some elements are rejoicing, and imagining evil. But they forget: man is not God, and Jehovah always has the final say. The descendants of Shimei need to learn vital lessons from their forebear.
As the base fellow assaulted the fleeing king, Abishai, one of David’s mighty men, said:”Why should this dead dog curse my lord the king? Let me go over and take off his head.”(2 Samuel, 16:9). But David restrained him, saying if God had not permitted Shimei, he could not have done what he was doing.
President Buhari has tolerated people who have called him all sorts of names in the past two years. If he didn’t move against them directly, he could have allowed many Abishais to move against them, “and take off their heads.” But not our President, a reformed democrat, a pious man, who has resolved to leave the people suffused by hatred unto God. And will they get their just desserts one day? As night follows the day, they will. If not from man, they will get it from God. Their forefather, Shimei did. He reaped what he sowed.
After some time, the rebellion led by Absalom was crushed by loyal troops, and David regained the throne. As he headed back into the city, who came to meet the king, with one thousand of his relatives, pleading for mercy? Shimei. The Yorubas say the same mouth that the snail used to abuse the gods, is what it uses to lick the dusts of the earth. Shimei had suddenly become gentle. And humble, too. He fell down before David, and said:”I have sinned. Have mercy on me. Don’t remember what I did against you on the day you went out of Jerusalem.”
Heh, on a certain day, some people would come to prostrate, begging for mercy, asking President Buhari to forgive and forget. What will the President do? What did David do? Abishai said again to King David:”Let me bring down the head of this man, who cursed, and threw stones at you?”
But David said to Shimei:”Thou shall not surely die.” And the king swore unto him.
But did Shimei live happily ever after? Old sins, they say, have long shadows. Before David died, he instructed Solomon his son, who succeeded him, not to forget to deal with Shimei. At least, David had kept his part of the bargain not to kill Shimei.
What did Solomon do? He restricted Shimei to Jerusalem, adding that any day he went out of the city would be his last on earth. Days, weeks, and months went by. Shimei remained gentle. But on a certain day, two servants belonging to him ran away to Gath, another city. Shimei saddled his horses, and led his men to bring back the servants. He had received mercy from David, but he couldn’t show mercy to the servants. Mercy begets mercy.
The story was told to Solomon. Shimei has left Jerusalem. He went to Gath, contrary to your instructions. It was time for judgment. Solomon commanded that what Abishai had long wanted to do should be done to Shimei. And his head was brought down.
Will the descendants of Shimei repent, turn a new leaf, and become human? Will they recognize their own mortality? He that is unjust, let him be unjust still: and he that is filthy, let him be filthy still. He that is overtaken by hate, let him remain hateful still. Behold, I come quickly, and my reward is with me, to give to every man according as his work shall be.
Let the descendants of Shimei who have ears to hear please hear. There is recompense for evil, and there is also recompense for good.
2023: North Has Learnt Its Lessons With Buhari — Sheikh Gumi
Islamic scholars, Sheikh Ahmed Gumi, has described Nigerians as very sentimental people who do not learn lessons.
In an interview with Sunday Sun, the Islamic scholar spoke about the 2023 elections, President Muhammadu Buhari and what is going on in the country.
Speaking on the coming 2023 elections, Gumi said stability is what is important now and not regional politics.
He explained that Nigeria is not about who leads from which region. He said what Nigeria needs is a crop of smart and intelligent Nigerians and it has nothing to do with whether the person is from the north, south, east or west.
According to him, the north has learnt its lessons with President Buhari. He said: “The north has learnt its lessons. Now, north is worse hit with Buhari. Jonathan was building 150 Almajiri schools, nine universities in the north. He was doing things. This Kaduna-Abuja rail, although the late President Umar Yar’Adua started it. So, let’s have somebody who can do it.”
Listing the qualities of the kind of leader Nigeria needs, he said such a person must be alert, intelligent, not take revenge, be forgiving, rehabilitate and not kill or imprison.
He added that the person’s mind should not be about catching people, but correcting them.
Asked if he has noticed any difference in the country since its return to democratic rule in 1999, he said there is development in the world as technology has made things better. He, however, said there is retrogression in government.
“Things are supposed to improve because science and technology have brought development close to the people. Government is retrogressing simply because we don’t have the right people in the right place and at the right time. Nigeria’s situation now is worse,” he added.
We Won’t Declare Kalu’s Seat Vacant — Senate
The Senate on Friday ruled out the possibility of declaring vacant, the seat of its Chief Whip, Senator Orji Kalu, following his conviction by a Federal High Court in Lagos on Thursday.
Kalu, a former governor of Abia State, was sentenced to 12 years’ imprisonment over a N7.65bn fraud charges against him since 2007 by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission.
The judgment was delivered by Justice Mohammed Idris, 12 years after the EFCC filed the suit against him.
Kalu was convicted alongside his firm, Slok Nigeria Limited, and Jones Udeogu, who served under him as the director of finance and account at the Abia State Government House in Umuahia.
Reacting to the calls on the leadership of the Senate to declare his seat vacant, the Spokesperson for the red chamber, Senator Godiya Akwashiki, said it was not possible.
He said such a request would only be considered after the embattled senator had explored all the legal options available to him without success.
Akwashiki argued that the constitution of Nigeria does not mandate the Senate President to unilaterally declare the seat of any senator facing prosecution or convicted by a lower court, vacant.
He said, “The Senate has no reason to declare his seat vacant. This is not the first time that such a thing would happen.
“There is no provision in the constitution that says the seat of any senator facing prosecution or convicted at a lower court should be declared vacant.
“He still has the opportunity to appeal the case.
“Even the tenure of a former governor Joshua Dariye, who has been in prison for some time now, ran its course until the end of the 8th National Assembly. Nobody declared his seat vacant.
“The Senate President cannot declare the seat of Kalu vacant. It is against the law.
“Tell those who are canvassing such things that there is nothing like that, it is a non-issue,” the Senate spokesperson added.
On whether Kalu will continue to receive salaries while in prison, Akwashiki said the National Assembly bureaucracy determines the payment of senators based on the template from the Revenue Mobilisation and Fiscal Allocation Commission.
N40m Allegedly Stolen In Bayelsa Govt House
Not less than N40 million was on Friday, December 6, declared missing in the office of Ebizi Ndiomu-Brown, the deputy chief of staff to the Bayelsa state Government House.
The Nation reports that about seven policemen and officials of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) have been arrested and detained as possible suspects linked to the development at the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) of the state police command.