Author: Tatalo Alamu
Snooper has been watching and following the intrigue-soaked, fiendishly quicksilver political milieu of Lagos with quiet animation. In the Fourth Republic, Lagos has gradually replaced Ibadan as the epicentre of progressive politics. It is the nerve centre and engine room of the transformational politics that has taken the old west and now the rest of Nigeria by storm. Have political brains and will travel. As the column never tires of positing, the artillery of knowledge is superior to knowledge of artillery.
But all over the world and particularly in post-colonial societies, progressive clans are a fractious troublous lot, quarrelling openly and quietly making up behind the scene even as the machine constantly purges itself of unworthy accretions. It is in the nature of radical organizations seeking changes to be riddled with even more violent contradictions than the status quo they seek to supplant.
Early in life, snooper developed a mantra which often sees him through political turbulence. It is that no matter what happens, the party is supreme. You may quarrel viciously and violently before decisions are taken, but once they are taken you have to abide by them. This mantra was taken from an old western political warhorse whose one-liner retort to internal protest was: (Wo, parti o gbodo fo!) Look, the party must not break up, no matter what!
This is why it is meet to congratulate the Lagos state governor Akin Ambode over his sweet victory at the electoral tribunal. Now that the electoral hurdle has been scaled, it is time for the calm and methodical fellow to unfurl his bag of surprises for Lagosians. Humane, polished, cultured, sincerely solicitous of other people’s wellbeing, and impeccably well-mannered , Ambode is quite a revelation in the coliseum of political roughnecks.
In the course of the last electioneering campaign, snooper sat down alone to drill the then gubernatorial aspirant and found his logical and intellectual grasp of issues, political, economic and even cultural, a tad short of prodigious. His answers were extensively well-researched and deeply thought out, shorn of pomp and pomposity. His quiet unassuming mien belies a ruthless streak which does not take hostages when sufficiently roused. Well-educated, well-travelled and very cosmopolitan in outlook, Ambode should take Lagos state to the next level after the labours of earlier avatars.
Here is wishing the governor a successful tenure. Good guys also finish first.