I try as much as possible to always avoid discussing personalities unless if it is in a tribute. While I wish to remain non-partisan, I strongly support and defend good causes and the proponents of good governance. In fact I am proud to associate with talented and highly gifted professionals who make their peers proud through dignified and matured ways they operate.
I write this piece as a reference to a satirical piece by Jafar Jafar against Sule Yau Sule posted on the amanaonline.com with a title: “The Return of the Napoleon of Spin.” My response to the piece is borne out of the reason that my name was mentioned and for the fact that Jafar and Sule are my colleagues, at least in syndicate writing. I have tried as much as possible, in private to admonish my younger brother, Jafar on some of his unsubstantiated allegations against Mallam Ibrahim Shekarau, Governor of Kano State.
His recent opinion is a parody deliberately intended to query the enviable credential of Sule Yau Sule as the Director of Press and Public Relations of Government House, Kano State. For those who may not know, Sule was one of my respected seniors at the Department of Mass Communications, Bayero University KANO (BUK). Because of his forthrightness and academic excellence, he was elected the President of Mass Communication Association (MACOSA). Even as a bookworm, he was actively involved in extra curricula activities that further endeared him to many and brought out the leadership qualities in him. Not only was he employed immediately after graduation, he worked as a practicing journalist, public relations officer at a reputable financial institution and served at least two governors in Kano State as Director of Public Relations before his present appointment. A winner of several awards and member of several professional bodies including International Public Relations Association (IPRA), London having garnered other professional qualifications. Unlike most mass-communicators who are uniquely gifted in either the arts of writing or speaking, like Dr. Bala Muhammad of Adaidata Sahu, Sule too has the combination of the two: power of oratory and skilful writing.
Though satirical piece may be theatrical and fictitious, Jafar presented his as if it is factual with the use of corrupted names that are easily identifiable and other nauseating remarks that I won’t repeat here. From the piece, the writer stated that I urged him to speak to Sule of which he said “he (Sule) sounded intelligent.” I was saddened that a personal intervention to establish mutual relationship between old and new students of great Mass-Communication Department of Bayero University Kano was cited to further strain intended relationship. I feel very sad that a former President of our cherished association (MACOSA) is exposed to unnecessary ridicule with fallacious innuendo that is not justifiable by a fresh undergraduate of the same department. It is a pity that as we grow and wish those behind us to do better, the young are questioning concrete landmark achievements of the alumni. I was PRO MACOSA and Editorial Writer Bayero Beacon, apart from being member of the Students Parliament. I know some of the achievements of Sule in MACOSA before my team tok over few years later. It is painful that Sule who is simple, humble and highly rated image maker, is today criticized baselessly by a young man who has obsessive hatred for his boss (Governor Shekarau).
I can’t stomach the agony of this melancholy. It is the highest level of disparagement. Though many readers may not be surprised to associate the said writer as the major and sole-critic of Governor Shekarau. In fact whenever he writes without mentioning Shekarau, those of us who belong to a popular list group wonder if the writer is recovering from self-inflicted odium against the respected Governor of the state. I don’t just say so but Nigerians through commentaries, opinions and editorials have said it loud and clear that Governor Shekarau is an outstanding governor who serves creditably to the admirations of dwellers of the city even when he is a victim of orchestrated campaigns of calumny from disgruntled elements. The power play and scheming to undo and outsmart the people’s governor power boomeranged on the face of the plotters.
Sule is not a coward as Jafar attempted to portray him. During the altercation that resulted to his suspension, he stood solidly behind Mallam: campaigning vigorously in fighting injustice, persuading the media to the true picture of things and monitoring outputs of public discourses for proper and appropriate response. And guess what? Behind the scene, he utilized the latest technology to achieve maximum result without moving from a spot. Many of us were on ground, even on the election days and are truly in the picture of what trespassed. Jafar knows this but I wonder why…why…why his persistent campaigns against the governor and now to his aides?
What make Sule and other members of strategic team to achieve the feat in their media campaigns? Their principal is a marketable product: straightforward, humble, indefatigable, reliable and incorruptible personality.
In this age of Information Technology, once one makes public blunder and receives deserving rebuke, both the initial opinion and the rejoinder are automatically archived and easily accessible for generations. For instance I take liberty to take comments by some individuals against the writing of Jafar over his neurotic detestation of governor shekarau that are culled from the internet.
From comments below by some bloggers on Jafar, one can easily see the contradictions on his stance. Before I rest my case against my dear brother (Jafar), I pray he would not be led astray by the fifth columnists who are scared stiff to show their true faces but prefer to use innocent and young chaps to play their dirty games. Because the message in Jafar’s article is not only embarrassing, upsetting, insulting, it is ominously malicious, slanderous and libelous whose implication is well understood by legal and media practitioners.
Like my piece here, there may be shortcoming in editing but the messages are clear.
Sani Garba (Sept 2006)
“It become necessary to write on the trash Ja’afar Ja’afar has been feeding us with for long time. It has become his business to blackmail, discredit and call Governor Shekarau with bad names and portrayng his government as bad. Wherever you see his writing, be it newspaper, internet etc, be certain it is on Shekarau as if it is only Shekarau that is the issue in Nigeria. He found nothing good in his administration, but only baseless figures, innuendoes, destructive criticism and other bad…His previous writings contain bloody sentiments, circumscribe by ignorance and jaundiced malice, as such responding to them is a wastage of time, for more than that has been said, yet Shekarau remain steady and even popular. I even wonder where he got baseless figures to defend his position, whereas he just to satisfy his personal wish hid the real figures. Bear it mind that, no amount of blackmail, hatred, and manufactured lies and theories against Shekarau shall become an impediment to the course he has taken, as such, I am encouraging you to continue, for it hardly rattles us.”
Ibrahim Musa Gwammaja
Thank you M.Sani for writing the rejoinder to Jafar Jafar.I initially tried to reply his malicious write-ups, but due to commitments I couldn’t. All the allegations raised by Jafar were baseless and unfounded. I’m sorry I don’t know where he got his balderdash figures to say that our corrupt-free governor has money in his personal foreign account… By the way, Jafar should fear God in his action and comment, as we are Muslims we should not close our eyes and downgrade, blackmail our honest leaders just for worldly gain. Governor Shekarau is not infallible, but his positive side shouldn’t be discarded.
Salisu Hashim (March 2007)
Jafar you are wasting your time, this thing you are doing will not add anything to you at all. That Shekarau you always attack with your keyboard, has he done anything wrong to you? If yes don’t you think of forgiving him, and at the same time thinking of managing the same situation if you find your self in a similar or same arena? From a councilor to the president, I don’t see why people like you continue to waste their time abusing, criticising why for a single time never provided any plan on how to move their country, state, local government forward.
This article originally appeared on the websites of Gamji and amanaonline in May 2007.