Thursday 6 May 2010

Nigeria: My wet tissues for President Yar'Adua

The passing of a president

The mystique and mystery surrounding the life and health of President Umaru Yar’Adua has now been obliterated with the announcement that he passed away in the Presidential Villa late on Wednesday, the 5th of May 2010 at the age of 58.

As one is saddened by this event, it does appear as one has speculated that the man was quite so ill in November 2009 when he was rushed out of the country under the pretext of attending the Lesser Hajj and opening a university in Saudi Arabia.

Saudi Arabia offered and provided a completely hermetical seal on all information about the extent of his illness and the seriousness of his condition beyond the notice that he had acute pericarditis as his court manipulated issues in his name for 3 months leaving the country leaderless, rudderless and listless.

Speaking no ill

Out of respect for the dead one is expected not to speak ill of the dead, however, for all the platitudes and praise that might be uttered on his passing one does hope that a form words would be spoken that are truthful, honest, just, fair and representative of the interminable angst he and/or his coterie of handlers put the country through.

We never fully learnt of how ill he was, we never really knew how capable he was and all the hopes that seemed to accompany his selection as President appeared to fizzle out under the speculation and rumours that were allowed to thrive anytime he was rushed out of the country for treatment.

He would probably would be known as the best figurehead president we ever had as his ministers became a law unto themselves and ran riot truncating the progress that was being made in the war against corruption and other influential people pitched against each other through proxies of unrest in the North and the Niger Delta, the ruling party became the beacon of every unwholesome thing imaginable.

In all he did

One would suppose the most laudable thing about his tenure would be the banking reforms that accompanied the appointment of the new Central Bank governor because his deputy who was appointed Acting President through the precedent of embarrassed necessity has systematically dismantled and reconstructed the government with some corrective determination.

President Umaru Yar’Adua even if he had resigned honourably when he found himself unable and incapable of holding office would still have been accorded the full dignity of the state funeral and a period of mourning – having died in office; he will still get the same but with seriously mixed feelings - our compassion and sympathies must outweigh our inclination to be indifferent if not dismissive.

Before one in the search of praise begins to field encomiums with dissimulation he was in general a nice man, believed to be an honest man, apparently a modest man and a president beyond which history must be given the latitude to construct the context of his life.

Nigeria had already moved on since the 9th of February 2010, as we mourn his passing, we hope and pray that our President Goodluck Jonathan the very best in continuing the viable parts of President Umaru Musa Yar’Adua legacy.

The President is dead, long live the President, God bless Nigeria, let the future begin.


BBC News - Nigerian President Yar'Adua is dead, says state TV

Al Jazeera English - Africa - Nigeria's president Yar'Adua dead

Nigerian president Umaru Yar'Adua dead - Telegraph

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