What is your take on your father-in-law’s comment that your rejoinder to his paid advertorial on Asiwaju Tinubu is inconsequential? He said you did not deny what he wrote about Tinubu, rather you left the message to attack the messenger. What is your reaction to this?
I think I will just restrict myself to my statement in the rejoinder. If you look or read the rejoinder, we never attacked anybody. We only juxtaposed the issue and tried to put it into the proper perspective. That as far as we know, the paid advertorial is self serving. That it does not reflect the situation of things. That Asiwaju has been a gift to Lagos, Nigeria and the whole of Africa.
If you compare the development of Lagos State to any part of the country before the advent of APC, you will see that Asiwaju’s vision for a better society is what Governor Fashola has actualized and what by the grace of God, Akinwunmi Ambode will build upon. Asiwaju and Fashola have made Lagos what we all are proud of today.
For example, the issue of energy, Asiwaju in the past tried to make Lagos have 24-hour power supply by bringing Enron to Nigeria. If it was not the politics at the centre (federal level), we would have surmounted the challenge of energy in Lagos. Asiwaju, as a very pragmatic leader, was able to lead Lagos far ahead of other states. For someone to say the opposite, trying to blackmail him, you and I owe the society the responsibility to actually put the issue in the right perspective.
Did you discuss with him (Prince Ademola Adeniji-Adele) before you wrote your rejoinder being your father-in-law?
I have always spoken to him. Prior to now, he had issues in which I have tried as much as possible to send him a note. He and Asiwaju came from the same stable way back. Before SDP, they were together. During the June 12, 1993 saga, they were together. I remember at Epetedo, where late MKO Abiola declared himself the president, they were together. In the bad days of the military, they were together. What could have gone wrong?
They (Asiwaju Tinubu and Prince Ademola Adeniji-Adele) fought side by side to enthrone democracy. What could have gone wrong?
He (Adeniji-Adele) was incarcerated and Asiwaju (Tinubu) was almost killed before he went on exile. Asiwaju sponsored NADECO, he sold his property, he risked his life. They floated Radio Kudirat. So, what could have gone wrong?
Both of them were comrades, fighting for a just cause, fighting for an egalitarian society. So, what could have gone wrong?
The same Asiwaju brought him back into the ACN and he became a commissioner. What went wrong?
Is your father-in-law no longer a member of APC?
I think he alone can answer that question. But he has not told me he has left APC. There is no bad blood between me and my father-in-law. I am still married to the daughter and in our culture we are one. But the issue is that enough of his blackmail. If he has any issue to raise, he should go back to his friend. Let them sit like adults and iron out their differences. It is not for him to start creating problems and heating up the polity.
In his interview with us he said he is representing a group consisting of 500,000 Lagosians. That he was not speaking for himself alone.
He alone can prove that. But as far as I am concerned, Asiwaju has not done the society any wrong. Asiwaju has helped to build the Nigerian society. So many times this man risked his life. So many times, many people wanted him dead. This is a man that has refused to bend. He is committed to bringing the lost glory of Nigeria back to the fold.
What do you think is the way forward? Is there a way of reconciling the two?
They are adults and they have reconciled before. I think there is too much bad press. All I am concerned with most is making sure that the APC wins the elections at all levels. That alone can prove us right. In our committed struggle, we are not going to be distracted. We are not going to be obstructed by any bad press. What we are committed to is winning the elections at all levels and putting Nigeria on the global map once again so that all of our people in the diaspora can come back to Nigeria to build this country. So that Boko Haram will become a thing of the past. So that insecurity in this country will become a thing of the past. Mass unemployment will become a thing of the past.