Nigerians who have any illusions about Shehu Sani would be reconsidering their views following his appearance on the TVC Breakfast Show today, 2nd August 2017.
Shehu Sani appeared on the programme from Abuja, while Salisu Tanko Wusono, acting publicity secretary of the Kaduna APC, appeared from Kaduna. It was classic! The “man of the masses” Shehu Sani was seen live on television displaying the most egregious forms of elite arrogance. Our civil rights activist said on live television that those who cannot speak English have no qualifications for leadership. Just like the way the English upper classes once imposed ownership of property as a condition for electoral participation, Sani was oozing disdain for one of the masses.
Wusono did not take the bait. The guy kept to message. He kept repeating that Shehu Sani has been suspended by the APC. He said the Kaduna State Government was implementing APC manifesto. Then he insisted that the APC conducted congresses in accordance with the party constitution. It was remarkable how the guy refused to acknowledge or respond to the personal insults from Shehu Sani. Eventually, the interviewers themselves were left with no option but to caution Shehu Sani to stop the insults.
Here is a sampler of the views Shehu Sani expressed on TVC:
1. Elite syndrome: He dismissed Salisu Tanko Wusono, the acting Publicity Secretary of the Kaduna State APC, as a shoe-shiner who cannot speak English. If the APC wanted to expose the contradictions and disdainful nature of Shehu Sani, it could not have made a better choice than to confront him live with Salisu Tanko Wusono, a man as close to the everyman in Kaduna as you can get. Shehu Sani repeatedly questioned Wusono’s educational qualifications as if those who don’t have the HND that Shehu Sani parades have no right to political expression or participation.
2. Contradiction: This same Shehu Sani tells people in Kaduna that Nasir El-Rufai is elitist, gives appointments only to the very educated and ignores the masses. The same man goes on national television to ridicule a party official whom he considers to have inferior education.
3. Southern Kaduna: The interviewers let him get away with reducing the southern Kaduna issue to a religious matter. But his record on this matter is questionable. In 2011, he said genocide was committed against the Hausa-Fulani in southern Kaduna. In 2017, with the same set of circumstances and actors, Shehu Sani says it is religious, a war against Christians because he knows that is music to certain ears
4. Arrogance: Shehu’s arrogance was dripping throughout the show. The preening, the showing-off might have put a peacock to shame. And what has our man ever achieved?
5. Uncouth language: Shehu Sani abused El-Rufai and shamelessly tried to ridicule Wusono. He alternated between mocking Wusono to calling El Rufai a tyrant, a fascist.
6. Dealer in untruths: He claimed that five journalists were on trial for criticising El-Rufai. No journalist in Kaduna State is being tried or even investigated for abusing or criticising El-Rufai. The Luka Binniyat he cited is on trial for publishing a false report in Vanguard. Neither Vanguard nor Binniyat deny that the said report, which alleged that five students were killed, is false. The others charged to court at different times are Jacob Onyewu Dickson charged for incitement and false report and Midat Joseph for incitement. Nasir El-Rufai has a civil action against Gabriel Idibia and his publishers whom he sued for defamation. John Danfulani, said to be a former lecturer in KASU, was charged in 2016 for incitement based on Facebook posts that tried to excite religious and ethnic tensions.
Followers of Nigerian politics will recall that Shehu Sani has since July 2015 based his politics on opposing anything Nasir El-Rufai does. He has cried to editors, reporters and prominent citizens that he is being oppressed in Kaduna. I am grateful to the TVC producer who decided to give Nigerians a chance to hear from an APC spokesman and a suspended senator. Anybody who values the equality of man will have seen Shehu Sani for the arrogant narcissist that he is.
Adams Lawal Magaji wrote from Kaduna. He is on Twitter as @magajispeaks.