BRF unwittingly wrote himself a chapter in the Nigerian tragedy that is the Lekki-Epe Expressway, the concessioning, the tollgates, the recent shootings/massacre, and the search for the truth of what happened on the 20/10/20. How BRF became Ahithophel is for him to find, if he has not traveled too far to return…
I don’t want to spend too much time explaining who Ahithophel is. If you are a student of the Bible, you would have come across him in your studies of King David. But since not everyone is a student of the Bible, I shall attempt to situate the man in context, for the benefit of all of my readers.
Ahithophel was a member of King David’s court, his principal adviser and consigliere. David relied on him for counsel, and the Bible records him as a man in whom God had deposited great wisdom and grace. Ahithophel supported the rebellion of Absalom, David’s son, against his father, and was the one that counseled Absalom to sleep with David’s wives and concubines in the view of all of Israel.
The day Absalom refused his counsel to immediately attack David, Ahithophel went to his home, set his affairs in order, and took his own life. He was wise enough to know that the war had been lost, the moment the initiative was rejected. The wisdom of Ahithophel, was somehow turned into foolishness. But how? What turned wise Ahithophel into a fool? God had given him wisdom, and he remained wise until corruption entered his spirit, and he was rendered foolish by corruption.
The error is to always look to money as the agent of corruption, but in Ahithophel’s case, it wasn’t love of money or filthy lucre, that birthed his corruption. A bitter heart was the gateway to his corruption. Ahithophel was the grandfather of Bathsheba, and in-law to Uriah her husband, who was sent to the battlefield with his own execution order by King David, all in a bid to cover up the king’s shame.
But what business has Ahithophel with Lekki? Just tarry a bit and you will make the connection.
When Babatunde Raji Fashola was appointed Tinubu’s chief of staff, and then his successor, he was unknown to a lot of people outside the world of law practice and Surulere. He was not a politician, he had practiced law exclusively, and I am not sure that he had any social life to speak of, beyond his commitment to the Belle United football teams that he played street football with, at every opportunity.
I was a rarity amongst my friends: I knew the man. I had worked with, and for him. He was my employer for a period of time. Six months, I believe it was. He was the very last of my employers. I had resigned to start my own practice, and he had been named chief of staff after my departure from the firm. I wrote him a congratulatory letter on hearing of his appointment, but hindsight would suggest that I should have mourned the honorable man that I knew, instead of congratulating him.
The BRF that I worked with, was a man of great integrity. He was a godly man. He was a conscientious man. A man of honor. He was dedicated to the practice of law. He was given to his prayers, however busy he might be, and he was scrupulously honest. He was fastidious about keeping financial accounts, and he was a fair man to work for. He was a cold fish when he had soured on a man, but ordinarily a good guy. I was happy to vouch for him.
The BRF that came out of Tinubu’s hands is another ballgame entirely. This BRF is an unknown creature. The integrity of old is lost. The strong moral anchors, vaporized. BRF was never intellectually comparable to Osinbajo, but he was a highly intelligent man, who had deepened his intellectual capacities by his own diligent studies and introspections, but the new one is a most vacuous, vain, unimaginative, and self abnegating man.
Osinbajo is compelled by his office to speak on behalf of a government bereft of vision and integrity, and whilst one might be pained at the diminution of the man, it is easy to find some empathy for his plight. It is the tragedy of watching the decadence that has overtaken BRF that is excruciatingly painful to behold. He looked ridiculous. I might have felt insulted, perhaps even pained, if someone else had been assigned the shameful task of finding what was never lost, but as I have watched videos of my former oga acting Sherlock Holmes, I bewailed the putrefaction of a once honorable man, hobbled by an evil system.
Rendered existential, debased, and carnal, unable to see how much he has fallen from where he was. BRF unwittingly wrote himself a chapter in the Nigerian tragedy that is the Lekki-Epe Expressway, the concessioning, the tollgates, the recent shootings/massacre, and the search for the truth of what happened on the 20/10/20. How BRF became Ahithophel is for him to find, if he has not traveled too far to return, but the BRF who I was privileged to work for, and with, would be ashamed of the BRF that I saw at Lekki tollgate.
I am hopeful that I would be spared the shame of watching my former oga, damn himself for eternity, by insisting on playing the Sherlock Holmes in the “Lekki Massacre”. It would be him buying a lifetime ticket to the Nigerian gallery of rogues.