During one of my trips to Lagos this year, I was with a certain guy called Jide Omiyale Jnr. who exclaimed ‘Lagos is working’, having seen the flyover and the bus terminus at Berger and when we got to Oshodi, he finished it up with ‘Ambode is working’.
So what went wrong?
I remember what one of my bosses told me a long time ago. His thesis: as you climb the executive ladder in the corporate world, your competence sometimes does not matter much, what counts more is how much can your superiors trust you? How much can people feel comfortable having you calling the shots? It appears Ambode is not lucky enough to have gotten such an advice.
Ambode’s problem is poor human relations. Simplicity. And no tears for him.
Performance ko, perfume ni. Performance my foot. When has performance become a determinant in the equation of second-term in Nigeria politics? It is much more of how much can you manage your superiors and subordinates than anything else.
This is a governor that has performed more than any other
around him even though it could be argued that, compared to his predecessors in Lagos, he performed below standard.
But what is performance when you cannot manage your bosses and subordinates? Your deputy, your commissioners, 57 local governments, 34 HOA members, are all against you. Your poor man management made sworn enemies join together just to get rid of you. Banire, Fashola, Hamzat, Tinubu and the lot are singing only one song: Ambode must go. Even Eleko Of Lagos, Oba Akiolu has been mum on this issue. You must be damn bad.
I do not know why some people are asking for Tinubu’s head in this Ambode’s imbroglio. The guy did his best to save Ambode by acceding to Abuja pleadings but when he realised the inferno could consume him too, he had to back out and let Ambode cook in the stew he prepared for himself.
After the campaign in Oshogbo, Jagaban was reported to have burst into tears after entreaties by the president and some governors. One northern governor was said to have prostrated for Tinibu as against their normal ranka-dede. Tinubu gave them his words but when he got to the GAC meeting in Lagos the following day, his lieutenants told him no going back with one voice. The masquerade is as strong as his followers. Tinibu had to back out and save his own head.
Why would you be so poor in human management that you could not even get one supporter out of the lot? It was alleged that Aregbesola waited for hours to see Amdode and that is a fellow governor and the don of Alimosho politics. Some arrogance, then you ask, when gold rust, what will iron do?
When Jagaban had some issues with Fashola, the latter had some APC hierarchy on his side and Jagaban had to soft pedal. Not that I believe Jagaban wanted to remove Fashola then but senior politicians, now and then put some pressures on you so that you do not forget you still have a boss. We have seen it play out severally as it just happened in Oyo state when Tegbe was used to checkmate Adelabu. Job done, Tegbe withdrew.
Back to our man, Ambode.
And so like Jesus, they have a litany of offences against him. After all, you have to call a dog a bad name to hang it.
His greatest offence being the revocation of the contract of the refuse clearing company engaged by his bosses, which led to the loss of 25000 jobs.
You graduated from that only to remove about 35 top civil servants forgetting that Lagos civil servants are more of politicians that the politicians themselves. They are all card-carrying members of political parties. Ambode himself is a product of this system.
Another important issue is deviating from the Lagos template. Lagos got her blueprint of development ready since 1999 and all APC governors are expected to follow it. Ambode sidetracked this plan.
So, why shaking the table? Why rocking the boat? If it was about making money, you could look elsewhere rather than snatching those of your bosses.
And then, that ill-advised press conference which finally sealed Ambode’s fate. He broke many laws in the 48 laws of power. He challenged his bosses and wanted to outshine his masters. He didn’t get either instead he sank deeper into a political pit.
You claim to be in a political party and call their candidate a drug addict and Yaba left (psychiatric patient) and this drug addict is still a top-ranking member of your cabinet.
In Nigeria, you make a grave mistake to judge elections and popularity by comments on social media. Ambode must have been emboldened by many comments on the social media urging him to take up his bosses, forgetting that most of these commentators are bereft of the issues at stake. He must be rueing the day he agreed to have that press conference and it will hunt him for the rest of his life.
So which way for the robust technocrat turned politician? He could jump ship or stay inside, appease his bosses and wait for a better tomorrow. He dares not go to another party if he does; he will be impeached before his membership card of the new party is given to him and that will be disastrous for him in Lagos of Jagaban.
Let him fight from inside. The brilliant ones who stay loyal to Tinubu are not stupid. In Oshogbo, TTinubu swapped his agbada for Fashola’s own. Somebody said that it was a hand-over and I say it is a reward for loyalty.
Those who did otherwise have gone to political oblivion. Ask Pedro, ask Dosumu, ask Koro and others.
Jagaban owns his Lagos.
By Jide Omiyale
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