WHY SHOULD THE BEST ‘MAN’ WIN?
Episode 01 – Why not the Unusual?
Many a time we really do not have voices brawny enough to speak true to power or intending power; strong enough to defy the ambiance of mischievous silence; tough enough to disrupt the impish status quo; but I have decided to speak and register the voices of other progressives so that it may be said of us that we lend a voice when it was necessary to do so.
God bless my erstwhile Social Director who promoted albeit with jagged mannerism the parlance ‘FSS kere, o l’aluuta nla, FSS kere o sugbon o l’aluuta nla.’ Every Student Union executive who did not stride into the power house but earned his position through the rigorous, cutthroat and highly competitive electoral process will understand the wisdom in this colloquial mantra. In any case, no Student Union executive before my 2015/2016 administration had a fair ride onto power. They always have a battle to fight.
The battle of the division along religious affiliation and departmental sentiment is still alive. That of the ‘Management’s candidate’ is still ubiquitous. And recently the dichotomy of ND/HND levels is brewing; fiercer than someone like me would have expected. Whether that could be attributed to awakened leadership and political consciousness or self aggrandizement is what I could not discern but over time we have refused to ask the most important questions.
We have watched this drama played for long and unless we want to remain in the same corridor of our intellectual ignoramus and impish idiosyncrasies, the time is now to create a new narrative. These story lines are antiquated already and cannot hold water anymore.
So many pundits will wonder why our Student Union elections can’t be a battle of the intelligentsia and not staunch ruggedness. Why can’t we be more concerned about service delivery than mere parade of cluelessness? Why can’t we choose meritocracy over popularity? Why should religious affiliation and departmental sentiments and most recently academic stratum and echelon be the primary items of consideration in a discuss of choosing who decides your fate for the next 365 days – anyways, I spent 370 days in office though.
Guess what?! These considerations as guiding points to electoral decisions have been tried and it continues to fail us.
Meanwhile, we could not fault the result; the input is flawed so you don’t expect the output to be any better. We were sentimental with the parameters informing our decision of who to vote for, so we shouldn’t expect a less defrag situation. Okay, let’s check the dusty pages of history for some minutes.
The 2013/2014 administration of Mr. Oke Wasiu Pattern is one of the most wonderful and brilliant governance we’ve had in FSS if standing out for the student, mild confrontation with the management sometimes for the wrong reasons though is anything to go about. Meanwhile, what they had is an executive team which has just 4 Christians and 9 Muslims. Muslims are great guys, right? Yes we are, I’m Muslim anyway. And in any case, the administration was full of Statistics students. But as much as they did so many wonderful things, they had their flaws. So perhaps a Muslim student union leader running an administration full of Statistics student is not the best for the student.
Pattern handed over to Mr. Akadiri Oluwaseun Bayonle, we call him Stable, a Christian who so many people will argue won the elections thanks to the insensitivity of the Muslim elites contesting against him them including; Beacon, Icon, both established Muslims and the controversial ATM and Solution whose faith so many couldn’t discern until after the elections. Stable is a young man who holds his faith at heart dearly and he led an administration filled with Business Administration and Management students and Christians to the brim and had just one elected official as Muslim, the General Secretary, the second Muslim was appointed as the Director of Info for Computer Science Department. On my personal score card and in the spirit of being fair, Stable’s administration wasn’t as celebrated as that of his predecessor perhaps given to the circumstances surrounding his triumph at the polls. And unfortunately, the ecstasy and expectation of a new administration overshadowed his strides in office and consequently his way out of office. On an average, his administration did well perhaps they could have done better if they had more Muslims in their midst since Muslims holds the magic wand, abi? And then too many Business Administration and Management students spoil the broth jaare…? Let’s move on.
Our administration came into power in an election generally ascertained free, fair and credible enough and with high expectations from us. We were a perfect blend of religious adherents and departmental stratifications and of course, we did delivered averagely perhaps we could have done more but ours was the administration marred with the highest rate of scandals and power tussle.
The essence of my story is this. We have tried, watched and heard of poorly manufactured theorems leading to creating a divide along religious and departmental lines in Student Unionism but none, absolutely none worked. Pattern’s administration wasn’t generally acceptable because he was a Muslim or a Statistics student but because he rose to the need of his people at that point. Stable’s administration did not become less popular because he is a Christian and his administration fielded Business Administration students and my administration which was headed by a Statistics President and Vice President did not rise to disappoint the people despite high expectations but because we dilly dallied with the challenge of our people at the time.
Year in, year out, the students are confronted with different challenges; and the rudimentary essence of governance is to maneuver its way by hook or crook towards meeting up with the demands of its people within the confines of civility and fairness.
Therefore, the question here goes beyond the confines of what department is he? Of what faith is he? ND or HND? More prominent is the question of what value can he bring to the table. Can he rise up to the challenge of our time? When he talks, is he so cerebral enough to drive our affairs for the next twelve month? What defines him beyond the usual legendary ruggedness of ‘greatest gbo gbo gba gba’?
You can’t always try the same thing, the same way and expect a different result! No! At least, for the sake of proving my points wrong, let’s start this electoral journey with an open mind, listen to the manifesto, the debate, the campaign points, the body language of the contestants and let’s go to the polls and cast votes without casting aspersions on religious sentiments, academic strata and departmental sentiments. We need to do this, this time the unusual way!
My name is Mujaheed Yusuff Maruff
No Accolades; I am just me.
#10DaysCountDown #FSS.SUElection #10DaysToGo