10 things we learnt from Asiwaju's grand event
When Bola Tinubu hosted Buhari in Lagos, we picked up 10 lessons no other outlet saw.
As the event wore on, trust us not to miss a thing. Here are 10 for your reading pleasure….
1. Babachir Lawal is a lonely man these days
Lawal is the former Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF) accused of corruption and sacked by President Buhari in October of 2017.
First told he had been sacked by the presidency, Lawal famously asked State House correspondents: “who is the presidency?”
He was so powerful, he thought he was the presidency.
Well, at the BAT Colloquium, he looked less so. The power of the Bleck Penther appeared to have been stripped ewey from him.
Lawal sat with Nuhu Ribadu and Andy Ubah at the extreme left of the stage; far from where the presidency, Ministers, Governors and important aides sat. And he was really looking lost and lonely at intervals.
Life really does come at you fast.
2. Tinubu is the most revered politician in the land
It takes a certain kind of political clout to bring serving Governors, Ministers, Vice President and a President to Lagos annually for a lecture series in your honour.
Every big name in the APC attended this eventand you’d be right to call them Jagaban’s children.
Just goes to show how much respect the big names in the nation’s politics have for Tinubu and how they won’t stop eating from his palms.
3. Is there a better speaker in Nigeria than Osinbajo?
He’s mastered the art of speech delivery so much, Osinbajo can ditch a teleprompter and an iPad and still deliver a helluva speech.
Speeches have become cakewalk for him.
As always, his speech at the BAT Colloquium was a masterclass in the fine art of public speaking. His cadence dictated the mood of the audience as he progressed.
He would begin with a wisecrack, delve into the meat of his essay and close with a nugget. Without breaking a sweat.
And as always, when he rounded off his speech here, the audience handed him a standing ovation.
4. Obanikoro has probably been hitting the gym
Former Minister in the Jonathan era, Sen Musiliu Obanikoro, is looking all trim and buff these days.
And it has nothing to do with the fact that he spent a few weeks in jail for alleged corruption, we are certain.
As he settles in with his new friends in the APC, Obanikoro may just have been hitting the gym to keep fit for the political battles ahead.
5. Colloquium or campaign?
The BAT Colloquium used to be a forum where the best of minds discussed policies and ideas that would shape the polity.
However, since the APC sacked the PDP from the center, the BAT colloquium appears to have lost its original purpose and shine.
This edition will be remembered for its boring presentations and documentaries on Buhari’s achievements and social investment programs.
6. The cameramen, SSS fights
The job of keeping the president and politically exposed persons safe is a really tough one.
Ask the gentlemen in black at the BAT Colloquium who had a really tough time keeping photographers and photo journalists in check.
They would form a barricade with their burly bodies, but the photographers would find a way to push past the barricade each time.
When it was time for cutting of Tinubu’s cake, the SSS chaps gave up as all photo-journalists poured onto the steps of the stage, shoving security orderlies aside.
However, it has to be said that a few photographers would be undergoing massage therapy as you read this, because they were pushed to the floor by irate security operatives time and again.
7. Tinubu is so fit
I came face to face with Tinubu at least twice. Once, when he was stepping out to receive Buhari and when he was dashing for lunch after the event.
He was literally sprinting on each occasion as his orderlies and wife tried to keep up with him.
66? Nah, the man has the energy levels of a 30-year-old.
8. Buhari is certainly the king of political comedy
Ok, you may say he’s got dry jokes and all, but Buhari always has a way of making his audience laugh so hard when he speaks.
He did it again here at intervals. He also chuckled as others spoke, you've got to admit that he's got a sense of humour.
He may not be Ali Baba but hey, he does try.
9. Politicians can sleep sha
Maybe it’s because they stay awake all night trying to ruin your country, but I haven’t been at a political event where some top politician isn’t throwing their head backward in deep, snoring sleep.
You know that sleep where the mouth is hanging open? Yeah, that one.
I counted five big men sleeping their heads off today, right in the middle of the event.
I must confess that I had the urge to go wake them up, but I was raised well.
10. Sycophancy is a thriving industry
What’s with these guys who are always beating talking drums and chanting praises each time a politician is about to make his way into an event venue?
Ok, they were here again in their numbers. Draped in APC colours and stuff.
I caught a few inside the event hall as well. During Tinubu’s speech, they went: “On your mandate…on your mandate…we shall stand".
Give these guys medals already.
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