The moral fiber of the Nigerian society was shaken this week after two major acts of alleged betrayal shook the national media space.
The news of the declaration for the presidency by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo was received with mixed reviews by political actors. While some saw it as a natural ascent for him, others from a particular section of the political landscape saw it as a betrayal. Indeed, his declaration was followed up by these critics who labelled him a Judas and caused it to trend on twitter even as at press time yesterday.
The other more vivid tale of betrayal came from the touching revelations of the alleged role of Mr. Peter Nwachukwu in the death of his wife, Osinachi Nwachukwu.
That indeed, is for your correspondent, the more touching revelation of betrayal. Disclosures of several slapping incidents, brutalization and oppression of the lady by her husband touch a raw cord. How do you relate biblical injunctions on faith, fidelity and forgiveness in Osinachi’s relationship with her husband with contemporary assertions that a woman should not tolerate any act of brutality from her husband?
Osinachi preferred to trudge the path of faith, fidelity and forgiveness, albeit to her physical detriment than embarrass the ‘demon’ she was married to.
It is remarkable that drawing from her experience, that one of Nigeria’s creative writers, Miss Michael Ozioma Helen, who goes with the moniker, Ada Aburu, last Wednesday, called off her wedding to one David Okike on the claim of alleged serial abuse.
The wedding was supposed to hold today.
The parallel between Ada Aburu and Osinachi is that they were both involved in the creative industry, helping in their various ways to lift humanity through their various gifts.
While entertaining and lifting the souls of many in society, they privately endured humiliation and brutalization from their spouses.
Unfortunately, the kind of rage that should have been expected from the polity has been rather lacking. This is where the First Lady of the country and others who bear the moral compass of the society should show themselves.
Remarkably, the abuses suffered by Osinachi and for which Ada Aburu has now fled from, greatly diminish our collective value. From what we now know, Osinachi may have attained much more in terms of her sonorous vocal contributions but for the alleged bestial inclinations of the spouse she was married to.
But shockingly, spousal abuse is not limited to women. Men also suffer, and many of them in silence, praying just like Osinachi to change their wives who abuse them through many devices including sex denial, haughtiness and such.
If Peter Nwachukwu is now portrayed as a Judas, on account of his actions against his wife, Osinachi, is that enough reason to demonise Prof Osinbajo as a Judas?
In what way has Osinbajo betrayed Asiwaju Bola Tinubu who chose him to be a commissioner in his cabinet?
The assertion of betrayal flows from the assertion of supporters of Tinubu that Osinbajo should not have made his bid for the presidency given the life-long ambition of the former Lagos State governor.
For many, it is a moral dilemma for anyone to contest against his political benefactor.
This supposition flows from the lack of ideology in the political landscape. Tinubu wants to be president because it is his life ambition. So, one may ask, is Osinbajo’s life ambition to perpetually serve as a surrogate to Tinubu?
This question comes to mind following the rash of opportunism as the children of many political leaders in the polity are being thrust upon the electorate by their parents.
Nothing wrong with that, but they are supposed to bring forth their ideological claims that qualify them for the offices they pursue.
Tagging Osinbajo as a Judas or betrayer diminishes the quality of his person, his legal qualifications and capacity.
The demonization of Osinbajo has interestingly caused the recall of the story of Mazi Samuel Goomsu Ikoku who contested against his father, the great Alvan Ikoku for a seat in the Eastern House of Assembly in 1957.
The effrontery of the ideologically driven SG Ikoku, who was an associate of Chief Obafemi Awolowo, was manifested when he defeated his father in the election. The father did not disown him. Rather, he came out to back his son in the next election.
Alvan Ikoku may have been defeated by his son, but his legacy as a nationalist was not buried and today Nigeria has recognized him with the encryption of his image on the N10 note.
So, if SG Ikoku could contest against his father, one can imagine the prospects of Osinbajo given the claim by Tinubu that the vice-president is not his son.
As a Senior Advocate of Nigeria, SAN, a professor of law and a pastor, Osinbajo may have reached the height of his calling in law, academia, and religion respectively.
While your correspondent may have acquitted him of the allegation of betrayal, his claim that he would want to finish what President Muhammadu Buhari has started is another argument entirely.