Tuesday 14 April 2015

Opinion: No man!

Just imagine if when Oba Rilwanu Akiolu, the paramount chief of Lagos in that moment of unguarded irresponsible verbiage had been challenged rather than applauded.
Wonder if the Zulu king, Goodwill Zwelithini, had been circumspect about foreigners if his views met with immediate disapproval as he spoke.
If in that interview cum media chat, President Goodluck Jonathan when he did not give a damn, the obsequious, star-struck and fawning interviewers had the temerity to ask him to responsively give a damn.
If those we look up to were given a piece of our minds contrary to blind followership begging for subservience.
If we balanced our respect with a modicum of irreverence that allowed leaders to lead without thinking themselves infallible, omnipotent or inviolable because they were conscious of their humanity and listening for good and sometimes difficult counsel.
I believe the story would have been about the reconsideration at that setting than the overheated reporting of the outburst. Maybe, just maybe, the world we see would have been a better place.
Sadly, leaders fail themselves when surrounded by acolytes who do little to complete and complement their leadership by vying for favour and recognition when they should be accentuating the good with fervour and curtailing the bad with wisdom.
There are too many 'Yes men', men without cojones, self-interested minions whose activities eventually show the whole enterprise they are in, in a bad light.
Invariably, they excuse the inexcusable, support the intolerable, defend the reprehensible and promote the atrocious with utterly damnable and illogical arguments as their acquiescence gives licence to impunity without any discernible consequence.
Yet, what a leader needs is a fearless and bold courageous follower or counsellor. Like the man who whispered in the ear of gladiators of old on victory processions: 'You are but a man, mortal and at the mercy of the gods and the times'.
No men, one who can stand up when all are bowed in worship and obeisance to say, 'No man! You can't say that,' or 'No man! You can't do that'.
The person to stay the folly, quell the anger, appeal to the better nature or arrest the stupidity that leaves men as sheep when they should be lions.
Just imagine if the courts of kings, leaders, the powerful, the rich, the elite, the privileged or those with responsibility or authority had viziers with gravitas or jesters with levity rather than Yes-men. Just imagine how much peace and harmony will reign.

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