Lovers of African poetry who follow events in the All Progressives Congress are likely to remember a classical poem by Malawian poet, David Rubadiri, titled ‘Stanley Meets Mutesa’.
This is based on what happened on Friday when two members of a political family-turned opponents, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu and Professor Yemi Osinbajo, met in the same Lagos they once coinjoned.
They met eyeballs to eyeballs and even shook hands with which they used to eat together in Alausa Secretariat.
It was at a meeting called by leaders of the All Progressives Congress in the South-West, led by Chief Bisi Akande.
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The duo did not have to say much to each other, but a lot was likely to have coursed through their minds.
Many have dubbed Osinbajo a ‘ betrayer’ as they argue that, apart from the fact that Tinubu made him a commissioner, he (Tinubu) is the one who nominated him for his current position.
The latter point has, however, been contested by the Osinbajo group.
Besides, a lot of people also believe that the question of betrayal does not come up as everyone is free to express his vision and passion and explore opportunities.
In the poem, ‘Stanley Meets Mutesa’, a white political intruder, Stanley, and native town leader, Mutesa, have to meet, in a canoe of anxiety and uncertainty.
Eventually when they meet, all the king can say is. ‘Mtu Mweupe Karibu’, meaning, ‘Welcome, white man, with the poem ending thus:
“The gate of polished reed closes behind them
And the West is let in.”
It is ironic that ‘West’ is a major player in the poem, as the Friday meeting was about South-West stalwarts.
Meanwhile, Akande has said that the South-West presidential aspirants of the party , governors and other leaders are united ahead of the 2023 general elections.
Addressing newsmen at the end of the meeting with presidential aspirants from the zone on Friday night in Lagos, Akande, however, urged party stalwarts and aspirants “to talk to themselves and the public with absolute decorum”.
According to the former governor of Osun, the South west APC leaders are united and will work to ensure that the 2023 presidency comes to the South-west.
“We are united as we will ensure that the presidency of the Federal Republic of Nigeria will come to the South-West.
“We had a fruitful discussion.
“We also resolved that everybody should maintain absolute decorum because we are united,” Akande said.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) also reports that the big-wigs of the ruling party met at the Lagos House in Marina.
The meeting was convened by Akande and Chief Olusegun Osoba, a former Ogun governor.
Others at the meeting included a former Governor of Lagos State, Sen. Ibikunle Amosun and the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Mr Femi Gbajabiamila.
The governors of Lagos, Osun, Ogun, Ondo and Ekiti Messes Babajide Sanwo-Olu, Gboyega Oyetola, Dapo Abiodun, Rotimi Akeredolu and Kayode Fayemi were also present.
Fayemi and Amosun are also aspirants.
Also there were the Ministers of Works and Housing, Trade and Industry and Investment, and Interior, Messrs Babatunde Fashola, Adeniyi Adebayo and Alhaji Rauf Aregbesola respectively.
Other APC leaders at the meeting were Otunba Gbenga Daniel, former governor of Ogun; Chief Iyiola Omisore, the APC National Secretary; Otunba Moses Adeyemo, former Deputy Governor of Oyo State and Chief Pius Akinyelure, former National Vice Chairman of APC, South-West Zone among others.
NAN recalls that APC had announced May 30 to June 1 as dates for its presidential primaries.