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Funmi Iyanda
Lagos, Nigeria
Funmi Iyanda is a multi award-winning producer and broadcast journalist. She is the CEO of Ignite Media and Executive Director of Creation Television
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Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Much ado

The news this morning is that Mr. speaker is being accused of not having done his youth service and of chronic bachelorhood (don't laugh o), apparently a text detailing these grievous nation destroying offences had been circulated amongst members prior to Hon. Bankole's election as speaker. The speaker turns 38 today and is calling a press conference to address these urgent national issues.

Abeg na me don crase finish abi na dem? A man is being crucified for his marital status? A man who if we go by his qualifications must have spent quite a bit of time focussed on education and a political career and is maybe only just prime for marriage if he chooses it. What will happen if like Condi Rice a person with great leadership qualities chooses not to either marry or bear children? What about all the married fools (some with five wives and 20 concubines) who have led us into a quagmire? Of course marriage is good especially if you get it right but it is not a prerequisite for great leadership. Some may need to have children of their own to have compassion for others, but there are many who do not. More alarming are the multitude who remain evil despite producing a football team from their loins. I know men in high political offices who do not know which class their child is in and who boasts about not having seen the wife for months but pacify her with a new diamond earring when she vexes. Of course the allegation is shadow chasing but how low are they going to sink? Abeg guys, guys! If you are going to drown a person, find a real boulder to weigh them down, this pebble attempt is laughable.

As per the NYSC, you mean say anyone still dey take that shambolic waste of national funds seriously? It has become irrelevant and dysfunctional providing one of the last bastions of "chop up" for lazy contractors with friends, family and cronies in strategy positions. That said, l do subscribe to the ideal of the NYSC and believe that as long as it is part of the requirement for public service all public servant must complete it. Mr. Bankole does not have the age exempt but isn't there a clause about it being waived for those who have received military training? The speaker is a Sandhurst graduate so that might suffice, l do not know whether it covers military training outside Nigeria though. All those are questions he must address but this let's nail him attempt is too obvious and these "offences" are puerile.

As stated in a previous post l don't know the speaker from Adam and have no attractions towards him nor the venerable institution of marriage so this is no favour currying attempt.

He is unwittingly carrying the fragile hopes of my generation, as long as he pursues his job with integrity and diligence, we will support him, we will also ask hard questions of him to keep him on track. So down with the greying, paunchy, self-righteously married baying dogs and let’s get down to the business of legislation, starting with the bloody budget.

28 comments:

abie said...

I never knew it was a crime in this country for public office holders 2 be unmarried. If dem dey vex, make dem go marry wife 4 am. Some people shld have their priorities right. Instead of working with him to ensure smooth running of the House, pple are busy peddling rumours. Mr. Speaker, we are praying for u joo.

Bella Naija said...

I know they were going to talk about his unmarried status...
Puleassssssse let them unleash their true motives, I'm sure many of them are scrambling so their daughters can organize the dude then have one big society wedding.
The NYSC point is different. Yes, NYSC is a disorganized mess but since they force the rest of us to do it! Mr Speaker should have at least gotten an exemption certificate.

Nigeria and priorities (or lack there of)!

Pumping! said...

Let them say(Elenu lo lenu).....

When did marriage guarantee good leadership skills... The people that wrecked this country aren't most of them married....

Abeg, let him continue and ignore the ranting of jobless people.

Anonymous said...

Hear, hear...

Miss Maple said...

Well if the brother aint married I’ll marry him…. ;-)
Just kidding o!
You know how our people are, always looking for a needle in a haystack.
But hey, guess what, I for one welcome this new development cos I feel that if the dude is loved by all IT shld call for suspicion, so all in all, I guess he’s in for a great start.

Comrade said...

Oh no, Here we go again. What do I have to do to get these guys to listen? So with all the Oxford, Harvard and Sandhurst education, he didn't remember to take care of the little thing called 'NYSC'. The problem with these politicians is that they never have all their bases covered. I'm sorry to say , but how much would it have cost them to have "arranged an exemption from NYSC". At the going rate, it would have cost 30k. Ofcourse, he got carried away with the Speakership thing. The first thing the speaker does is go on a trip to Ogun State. Why didn't he stay in Abuja, come out with all guns blazing, get Farouk Lawan to call a press conference and clear the air immediately on the "NYSC issue"? This is Politics 101. You kill a flame before it grows into a fire. Remember the Press conference Senator Iyabo Obasanjo called, talking about plans to impeach David Mark the day after he was elected as Senate President. That's the way Abuja rolls. You shout and roll on the floor , screaming that your enemy is going to shoot you before he even thinks of drawing out his pistol. Dimeji, Dimeji, wake up . These are things Harvard and Oxford can not teach you. Go to Lantoro, Sapon, Onikolobo and get streetwise

Sherri said...

that na capital offense now!
legislating while single.. lol

Anonymous said...

BTW Speaker is not a bachelor anymore, Did you not watch NTA on Sunday night when he went to visit Otunba Gbenga Daniel and introduced the lady as his wife. Apparently, he had a low key wedding last week.

Miss Maple said...

@Comrade,
ROTFLMAO!
"Arranged an exemption from NYSC". Ke?
Politics 101? You are too funny!
Yeah I get you. He shld have known better. But sadly, the NYSC thing is a big deal, God knows how he’s going to wiggle out of this one, but trust Abuja naaoow, I’m ‘confident’ they’ll find a way out.
Remember them ‘Toronto days”?
Nuff said.

Soul said...

It would be nice to hear how dismisses these 'strawmen'.

That really is why they are doing this, it's merely just testing the waters and sizing him up.

And yes funmi, I recall as well that military service exempts you from NYSC as well as anyone over the age of 30.

If he returned to Naija fulltime after his 30th birthday.. then nothing nothing.

The ironic thing here is it's his snadhurst education whch puts me off. Just a personal bias so I'll just stop there.
i do wish that people would stop saying he carries the weight of a generation on his shoulders, after all he is a man. He is not god. He will be good at some things and bad at others.
If we exalt him so high, even his common mistakes will appear magnified in our eyes.

But then the speaker of the house is like a minister without portfolio right?. So I don't really see what the problem is.

Let's give him some breathing space and let him do the damn thang. (smile)

Aijay said...

LOL!! What a joke!

yinka said...

hi funmi...
surprised you didnt bother to reply me on the post about JWC.and sourcing for funds..
i thot it was forefront for u...
...maybe not...

My Own said...

Wake up guys, it's normal that a man who aspires to high political office is generally distrusted if unmarried. This is the case anywhere in the world. That's why Gordon Brown married when he became a serious contender for the British premiership. His single status was believed to have counted against him prior. Condoleeza Rice is an exception, and she wouldn't have got away with it if she were a man. So let's not get it twisted guys, pretending the Dimeji factor is just a Nigerian disease. It isn't.

Funmi Iyanda said...

@comrade, a daa fun e, wa pe laye, o ni dagba iya (abeg blogger translate, okay okay that mean ego beta gor you, you go live long and not become a useless elder). make una help me tell Dimeji say this is no tea party o and the reason a certain class has not done well in politics is they undersestimate the area boys. He must not let them say sebi you see the so called educated young, man shine you eye well well. Now back to my Ayinla Omowura track Eje ka maa ba faaji bo.

wienna said...

i knew it's only a matter of time b4 his marital status starts becoming an issue. Some people just don't have their priorities set up straight at all and they obviously don't have any job to do. Whatever u do, (lol...Mrs Oladimeji Bankole-to-be), we're behind u.

Iyaeto said...

NYSC koo, NYSC ni.Where were they when/before he was elected as a member of the house of representatives. Haba! this guy has been representing his constituency since 2003.why are they now raising eyebrows? were they sleeping before? Also, it is not a crime to be single ke. David Lammy a UK MP and Minister for Skills at the Department for Innovation, Universities and Skills was born in 1972 was a bachelor when he was made MP. E be like say those people dey craze. If he has been in the house sin 2003 how come no one brought these issues up? I smell jealousy and propaganda. HAPPY BIRTHDAY JARE MR SPEAKER ENJOY YASELF.

Nigerican said...

Lol, trust old Nigerian Men to come up with such nonsense because their pride can't handle the fact that this young man might actually do a better job than them.( I know running sentence lol).Being a hater is soooo overrated , these people need to let this man do his job in peace. GO TEAM BANKOLE!!!!

Chxta said...

Funmi, if he is unmarried, I don't have a problem with that, probably less of an incentive to steal public funds.

As per the NYSC, while I think the programme as it is being run is a waste, it doesn't change the fact that the idea behind it is a great idea, and that more importantly, it is the law to do the NYSC. If Mr. Speaker did indeed shy away from doing the scheme, then his position even as a floor member of the House is untenable, and he should kindly resign.

NIGERIA POLITRICKS said...

For the first time in our democratic history, the House of Reps went for all of 150 days without performing a single legislative function of representation, legislation and oversight. Nothing happened but scandals, deaths, condolence visits, adjournments, fisticuffs and general display of ill-breeding. the old political buffoons at it again; trying to pull the house and new speaker down for some stupid inanities!

Mr.Fineboy said...

LOL@Comrade. True talk. Nigerian politics 101. "Chronic bachelorhood." I'm guessing that in Nigeria, being single is a disease that becomes chronic when a person hits 30. When OBJ and 'em dey marry more than four wives, no be "chronic" polygamy o. Naija don kill me.

MissO said...

http://www.thisdayonline.com/
Ok well there it is, already there is a picture of him durring is nysc... Beside i don't blame him if he skiped out that junk i have refuse to go do it... Only in Niger will an unmarried man be an issue, like you said they need to come out tell us what is really shooking them for body...

Miss Maple said...

@misso,
Yeah, I saw it, actually in the punch yesterday page 2… funny thing is… he sims to be the only one with dark sun glasses on……. I guess he has started attending classes (politics 102).

Chxta said...

I gather that he has presented his discharge certificate. Now that is what we want to see.

Good for him.

From Cali said...

I am excited about having a speaker that might actually have the know how to lead BUT he DOESN'T get a free pass on NYSC. He is not the only one that schooled abroad. A lot of us took the year off to go home and sort it out before continuing on or are doing so now. We have to stress that rules apply to everyone.

We can't talk about rule of law and due process and be willing to drop it in a second for anyone we think is appealing. That is not just a slippery slope, it is a dangerous one as well. His military training was not for the Nigerian Armed Forces, it shouldn't count.

As we all know, Nigerians are very quick to point out the problem but not the solution so where does that leave us? NYSC should come up with a special way for mister speaker to serve his country(yes apart from being speaker) and maybe some brainiac will use this opportunity to actually fix the NYSC structure and/or add other reasonable exemptions. It should also be made clear(by law) that this is the ONLY time it will be done, and henceforth ALL politicians should be screened for NYSC completion before taking office.

From Cali said...

Oh and Condleeza is not an elected official, if she tries to run for office her marital status WILL be an issue.

abie said...

Funmi abeg, i really want to know why it is such an issue dat Mr. Speaker is unmarried. Pls somebody should make me understand cos i just dont get it.

Chinedu said...

Thank you Funmi, NYSC is indeed a "Symbolic waste of national funds". I still shudder when I remember my service year. A waste of time, in a country where the youth graduate OLD from higher education after endless ASUU strikes! NYSC is just another reason to become even OLDER before your first job, in a country where the big firms have started getting picky about the age limit of fresh graduates they choose to employ.
You can imagine my surprise when on getting to the UK for a masters degree, I discovered that the average age of my other classmates was 21, most of whom go on to start a PhD. at only 22.
God help Nigeria!!

Anonymous said...

PLS HOW DID THE SPEAKER GET INTO THE HOUSE IN THE FIRST PLACE? DIDNT HE PRESENT HIS CV, WHICH SHOULD DEFINATELY INCLUDE THE NYSC CERTIFICATE OR WAS THERE A FORGED NYSC CERTIFICATE OR WAS IT OVERLOOKED AND AGREED THAT THEY WOULD CROSS THAT BRIDGE WHEN THEY GET THERE. I THINK WE HAVE LAWS AND EVERYONE MUST ABIDE BY THIS LAWS, BE YOU PRESIDENT OR SERVANT. THE SPEAKERS' PERSONAL LIFE IS NOT OUR BUSINESS AND WE SHOULD CERTAINLY NOT POKE OUR NOSES INTO IT. IF HE CHOOSES NOT TO MARRY, THAT IS HIS BUSINESS OR WHAT HAS THAT GOT TO DO WITH NIGERIA.