By Juwon Jacobs
After weeks and months of seeking relevance and validation by the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), a period which included his genuflections and grovelling before all manner of APC bigwigs, Femi Fani-Kayode finally underwent his beatification by Buhari today. A desperately tenacious hustler, he is now officially licensed to solicit handouts from his new friends, an art he has perfected over time.
Expect him to go into overdrive in his typically deprecating defence of his new paymasters. Talk about a character who has no shame, a presumptuous quantity who lives a perennially extravagant life, feeding off the tables of those who take this political featherweight, seriously.
Back in 2003, South West leaders prevailed on then President Olusegun Obasanjo to accommodate Femi Fani-Kayode as a mark of respect for his late father, Chief Remi Fani-Kayode aka “Fannypower” of the South West politics of the 1960s. His father was famous for treachery and duplicity for those who remember his profile well.
Femi Fani-Kayode was appointed Special Assistant on Public Affairs to Obasanjo in 2003 and became the quintessential alsatian who barked at everyone who opposed Obasanjo. The Osun State ministerial slot became empty in the twilight of that administration and Fani-Kayode was inaugurated into the position. He was in office for less than a year, but he continued to wear that office of “former Aviation Minister” as an expired necklace to gain access to high places.
Fani-Kayode still has a case file with the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), by the way. But the grandiose and lavish lifestyle he lives, is unsustainable for a man who has no visible form of income. True Fani-Kayode’s father was a successful lawyer in his time, who bequeathed a respectable law office to his son, Femi Fani-Kayode has preferred to live off the tables of the privileged in a manner that is so very disgusting, so obscene.
A little over a year ago, he embarked on a whirlwind tour of states across the country, collecting rents from his various hosts. You wonder on what platform he embarked on that self-serving assignment. He cooled off after the fiasco of his encounter with a journalist in Calabar, Cross River State, who asked him the simple question: “Who is sponsoring this your national tour?” The question destabilized Fani-Kayode who blew his top and raved at his inquisitor. Rather, he boasted that he has 57 staff on his payroll.
And that is the crux of the matter. What is the address of the enterprise Femi Fani-Kayode runs, to gross enough to fend for his ever growing family, which was blessed with quadruplets not long ago? Where is his law chambers? That question that journalist asked Femi Fani-Kayode in Calabar, remains unanswered as we speak.
But Nigerians have watched his desperation in recent moments, trying to cling and clutch at big wigs of the ruling party, the All Progressives Congress (APC). He has oscillated from Mai Mala Buni Yobe State governor and Caretaker Chairman of the APC to Yahaya Bello of Kogi State who Fani-Kayode once insulted in grand English, labelling him a psychiatric case. He has been seen at the wedding of President Muhammadu Buhari’s son in Kano State (to which he was not invited), gluing himself to the religious demagogue Ali Isa Pantami, the radicalised Minister of Communications and Digital Technology.
Fani-Kayode has been pictured visiting Senator Ahmed Yerima, a former governor of Zamfara, whose administration years ago, floated the idea of Sharia jurisdiction in the state.
Finally today, he was presented to Buhari which marked his eventual beatification as a friend of the President.
Hope Fani-Kayode’s new friends know him well. In his home state of Osun, he is incapable of delivering his polling unit, let alone his ward, nor his local government, in a political contest. He is to this extent, of below zero political relevance in the power structure in his home, who cannot therefore add value to the APC.
▪︎ Jacobs sent this piece from Abuja