By John Danfulani, Ph.D
I don’t know when, but guess it was not too long ago, some eagle eye compatriot sighted PMB majestically wearing an expensive Gucci shoe. Experts searched Gucci main stores and others marketing their products to know the actual price of the shoe. It was discovered,the Gucci shoe cost over 600USD, meaning over N260,000. For days now, a photo shop of PMB and the shoe have been trending on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and other social media.
With his declared 150 cows, two houses when he was elected, and military pension, PMB can afford such an expensive shoe. Again, when one computes travel his allowances, his uncountable foreign tours, local and foreign conferences attended as minister of petroleum and the de facto minster of foreign affairs-starting from June of 2015 to June of 2016; PMB has garnered enough to pick his children school fees in United Kingdom and buy a Gucci shoe. Above all, when you compute his monthly salaries and other allowances – especially entertainment sub-head, PMB can afford that Gucci shoe.
Justifying whether the “saintly” cum puritanical Daura Fulani can afford such an expensive shoe is the easiest task one can have. Nobody is even suspecting that he might have diverted or misappropriated public funds to purchase the shoe. The problem associated with the shoe are morally centred because of his antecedence and pronouncements before and after becoming a democratically elected president on 28th March 2015 and subsequent assumption of office on 29th May of the same year.
Sometimes in 2015 PMB banned importation rice under the guise that rice was a waste of Nigeria’s foreign earning. In one interview, he even said eating rice isn’t a must, people can eat Tuwon Masara (local food made from maize) or any local stable historically associated with them. Closely related to this was PMB’s refusal to give those on foreign medical tour and schooling abroad official foreign exchange. Further still, he banned using of Naira ATMs abroad and withdrawal from peoples domiciliary accounts. A gamut of these policies are to encourage people to patronize local products and services. A superficial tour of these policies will show that patriotism was the driving force.
When the Gucci story hit the public glare, PMB and APC propaganda machinery went to work by advancing cheap damage control talks like: he can afford the shoes, he is our leader and deserved that etc. Let me not hear somebody say PMB can afford it because we too can afford foreign rice. By the way,we weren’t complaining. He stopped people from using their money abroad or withdrawing from their accounts, because we assumed he was sincere and living by the same rules, we bore the pains.
Now we know that PMB is morally defective and a wonderful dissimulator. Beyond his pontificative stance and comments, is a gigantic corrupt mind whose mission to get power is to make-up for his lost chances as governor, minister, head of state and PTF chief executive. Dregs of his double standard of “do as I say but don’t do as I do” began to show on 29th May 2015 with the over 10m Naira Rolex wrist watch the First Lady wore to attend his swearing-in ceremony. And his interview with CNN Christine Amanpour when he said he sent his kids to study abroad because he can afford it.
We now know that it wasn’t President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan that grew-up without a shoe, PMB must have plied Daura streets without shoes. And it is vivid the chief priest of APC puritans is working hard to catch-up before his tenure elapse in 2019 or sunset on his life.
Dr. Danfulani can be reached through his email: Johndanfulani@gmail.com