• Says without Tinubu, APC’s Buhari wouldn’t have won 2015
• Likens Tinubu to Biblical Jephthah, calls him deliverer of South-West Nigeria people
Pastor Tunde Bakare, has credited the victory of the All Progressives Congress (APC) producing Muhammadu Buhari as Nigeria’s president in 2015 to Senator Bola Tinunu.
Pastor Bakare, the Serving Overseer of Citadel Global Community Church, formerly known as Latter Rain Assembly (LRA), however, took a swipe against people, especially the Yoruba leaders said to be vilifying Tinubu, who is the APC National Leader.
Instead, the cleric, who hailed Tinubu, a former governor of Lagos State, for his political achievements, especially in the South-West Nigeria, said he should be embraced by warring factions in the region for him to do more.
Speaking on Sunday, on his message entitled: “An Idle Man’s Brain Is The Devil’s Workshop,” at his new church auditorium, The Citadel, Pastor Bakare, lauding Tinubu’s contributions to political development in the South-West said, he has fought and won many battles for the Yoruba people.
The cleric noted that it was Tinubu, who delivered Lagos State and other South-West states from the “onslaught of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) from 1999 to 2007,” contending that, without Tinubu, the APC, now Nigeria’s ruling party, would not have won the 2015 and 2019 elections.
In his Biblical reference, Pastor Bakare went through the stories of King David and Jephthah, saying not minding their past and shortcomings, they built their nations and its people and defended them against attacks of the enemy.
Likening the situations of their days to Nigeria’s situations, Pastor Bakare said the role Tinubu played in the South-West Nigeria is similar to the role played by the Biblical Jephthah, who, he said, delivered his people despite the circumstances surrounding his birth.
He said people have equally criticised Tinubu over his ancestral background and his adoption of the late Iyaloja of Lagos, Habibat Mogaji, as his mother, but faulted his critics who, he said held him in disdain for claiming to be an indigene of Lagos State and not Iragbiji in Osun State, where it was believed he hailed from.
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Pastor Bakare said holding such impression against Tinubu was not relevant to progress, as such, he said won’t be as important as his contributions to societal developments attributed to him, as he said people may not have a control over who to become their parents but they are free to chose their mentors and whoever they want to associate with.
“Despite his growing up challenges, the dents and the detours of his life, he, like (Biblical) Jephthah, delivered Lagos State and nearly all the South-West states from the onslaught of the PDP from 1999 to 2007. Truth be told, without his cooperation and political dexterity, the APC victory at the polls in 2015 and 2019 would have been impossible,” Pastor Bakare said.
Pastor Bakare known to have strong opposing views about Tinubu before now, however, said he was not Tinubu’s brand manager.
“I definitely do not endorse everything that you might have read about his present, or his past, or his lifestyle, or his politics or businesses, his spokesman can do that for him. All I know is that just as every saint has a past, every sinner has a future, and the best of men are still men at their very best,” the cleric said.
In his defence of Tinubu’s ancestry, Pastor Bakare told his “traducers” to carry their stone, saying, “I have a word for some Yoruba people whose stock in trade is nothing but a rancorous noise characterised by bitterness and resentment about the ancestry of the former two-term governor of Lagos State, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu.
“Carry your stone. I have a word for those Yoruba rancorous elements, noisemakers who have not achieved much as Asiwaju Tinubu has achieved, but are always querying and worrying themselves about his ancestry.
“His traducers are quick to tell you, he is from Iragbiji, that is where Jephthah came from, that is where he came from. As if that will resolve the issues we have today. Hear me loud and clear, knowing the name of Asiwaju’s mother or father or his place of birth cannot put food on the table of the hungry or create jobs for the unemployed.
“Those who are envious of him and those who desire to take his power slot should stop their useless talk about him, and busy themselves with what can add value to society.
“Like Jephthah, the Gileadite, he has fought many battles on behalf of the Yoruba people and won despite his rough beginning and God does not need anybody’s permission to put such in his hall of fame despite their past deeds and ancestry.”
Bakare, describing those who he said had no regard for Tinubu as “fools,” said he was only reasoning straight from the scripture.
“When you were sleeping, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu was working day and night. He secured Lagos. He secured Ogun, he secured Oyo. He secured Osun. He secured Ekiti. He secured Ondo. He secured Edo and you say he’s a nobody, òdè (meaning ‘fool’ in Yoruba language).
“And you think he laboured that much to say ‘come and take’. No, he is not a fool. Jephthah is not an idiot. Stop all this nonsense about ancestry, you will kill your heroes and those who can deliver you, you will put them aside and nothing will happen. All this shakabula (dane gun) leaders, they don’t have machine guns. All they have is ‘shakabula,’ (dane gun),” he said.
Pastor Bakare, who was the running mate of then presidential candidate, Muhammadu Buhari, in the 2011 election, said he is not a friend to anyone, adding that he would defend the rights of his enemies even when they have the right.