An Open Letter To President-elect, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu

An Open Letter To President-elect, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu

Dear Mr. President-in-Waiting, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu,

I do hope this open letter meets you well if, hopefully, it reaches your table one way or the other. I hope, with some burning faith, that you get the chance to read this letter, as I speak on behalf of the core mass of Nigerians who have no access to you and need to speak to their incoming President. Okay, maybe I do not have the mandate of majority of Nigerians to write this on their behalf, but I am convinced, being one of the people you are coming in to govern, that I speak the minds of a vast population of ordinary Nigerians.

It is appropriate that I first congratulate you on your success at the Presidential poll and wish you a successful tenure of office. You indeed worked very hard to achieve that success, being clear to all keen watchers of the polity that your party, the All Progressives Congress, by virtue of the many deficiencies of the Buhari government, has lost almost all of the goodwill that it rode on to power. As of the time you won that tough victory, the average Nigerian had become tired of your party and prayed hard to see an end to its reign in the country. Yet, you successfully rallied a slight majority and got victory. Again, I congratulate you.

As a citizen of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, I write to make suggestions I consider vital to the overall success of your administration. I understand from our collective experience as Nigerians that political stakeholders are often shielded from the raw realities of the country they serve, being that there is often no direct nexus with the common people of the country. This is because Nigerian leaders, like yourself, are surrounded by sycophants who block honest feedback to leaders. I thus hope that this note somehow makes it past the fence of sycophancy that may be around you so that for once, an ordinary Nigerian, may be able to speak sincerely to a Nigerian leader.

I have placed my suggestions under five (5) different sections of this letter and I should immediately delve into the meat of the matter.


No one can tell the story of your life truthfully and as knowledgeably as you. You know what your past is and what exigencies led you into taking what and what action at any point in time. However, as you have now been elected to the highest office in the land, there are questions about your history that you must answer sincerely.

These questions are beyond media bullying and a mob-led suppression of the voices asking those questions. These questions will continue to come and the voices will get stronger. What is your history with drug trafficking for example? What ambiguities surround your birth, upbringing and name? What past burden hang on your integrity as of now? These and many more are questions you need to answer about your person.

Mr. incoming President, you must unravel the mysteries surrounding your personality. The people will follow and trust you, only if they truly know you. I dare say knowing you will depend on information that comes directly from your mouth. Re-introduce yourself to Nigerians; tell your story, Asiwaju; clear the ambiguities and secure confidence in your person.

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A Media Chat/Pally is all it will take to offload the huge burden of doubt that rests on your personality at the moment. Do it, not for anything other than showing yourself truly accountable to the Nigerian people that you will be leading. Do it for nothing other than showing that you respect the feelings of the Nigerian people and you respect their desire to truly know the man who will be leading them.

Who are you, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu?


The victory you procured, Asiwaju, is not victory in the real sense, but a throne filled with thorns that you must carefully remove. You must know sir, that the mandate you currently have in your hands, is the mandate of less-than majority of Nigerians. While you were indeed lucky to have secured the highest number of votes, it is clear from the summation of votes that your two closest opponents got, that a clear majority of Nigerians did not prefer you.

It is also clear from pre- and post-election issues that preferences in the last election were driven by facts of ethnicity, religion and poor performance of the Buhari administration. While the disenchantment with the Buhari administration runs across all of the ethnic and religious fault lines in the country today, as all of Nigeria can almost agree that the Buhari government failed, the ethnic and religious sentiments that influenced the Presidential election proves to us that Nigeria is today more fragmented than it has ever been.

Thus, after revealing your true self to Nigerians and earning their trust in your leadership, you must set to work to unite the pieces of this delicately fragmented country that you are inheriting. You have to be deliberate with this. You have to re-establish the beauty of our diversity and close up the deepening divide. Up North, the religious divisions are clear, while down South, the ethnic divisions are worsening, even in the hitherto cosmopolitan and liberal Lagos.

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These divisions cannot allow us grow, as they continue to dictate the tone of interactions in the country. We will not grow under your leadership if these divisions do not close up.


Administrations before you have continued to pay lip service to the development of Nigeria. We are tarring roads and building bridges, but the true fundamentals of growth have been left in sorry state since this democratic experience started in 1999.

Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, fix electricity. Fix Water supply. Fix our Broadband capacity. Fix Housing. Build a viable and sustainable social security programme for the weakest of us. Diversify this Economy into sustainable, macro Agriculture. Fix Primary, Secondary and Tertiary Healthcare.

Each of these fundamentals represent one potential or the other, abundantly available in Nigeria. Electricity is the very foundation of true industrialization. Water Supply is at the very base of public health. Broadband is the foundation of digitization and we are clearly behind. Affordable Housing secures the primary need for shelter of the average Nigerian. Social Security helps us systematically cure our poverty and take the country out of the pits of widespread poverty; it is also the basis of food security as every Nigerian citizen will then be able to provide food for themselves, while opening new frontiers to our farmers and the markets. Economic diversification secures our long term prosperity, post-crude. A viable healthcare system ensures that even you, can get your desired ‘rest’ in the country, assured that there is enough capacity here to cater to your medical needs.

We have limitless capacity as a people. The dexterity of the average Nigerian has been hampered by absence of basic social amenities and the collective growth of the country remains out of reach. Fix these fundamentals wholly, Asiwaju, and you can deliver true development upon the new frontiers that will open up from these simple basics.


Outside of the fundamentals of modern day development that I outlined above, the disheartening value of the Naira, against other currencies of the world, is hampering growth in no small measure. You must put in place in Central Bank leadership that has a clear vision of the Fiscal policies that will aid the Nigerian economy and help us grow.

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Restoring the dignity of the Naira alone, alongside the points raised in 3 above, have the capacity to stabilize our economy and facilitate widespread growth. I do understand that this will take a lot of deliberate efforts, but we can achieve this with the right fiscal policies and persistence.


The beauty of our diversity as a people, is in the multifarious nature of our natural resources. Whereas we have these resources in abundance and in varied forms across the country, the States and Local Governments have stayed dependent on the handouts that come every month from the Federal Government, while sitting lame on the abundance in their respective domains.

A lasting legacy that your government can give to Nigeria, is to facilitate the correct practice of Federalism, touching on every facet of our National life. As we transform into a true Federation, more powers will reside with the States to develop and manage their unique resources, that will guarantee the prosperity of the people in their domain.

Our ajoje economy, where money is collected from a few cash cows across the country and shared to every State, functional or dysfunctional, is disallowing homegrown developmental ideas that will be peculiar to each zone of the country and will foster true development of each region. Discourage this ajoje and apapin economy and let us move into an era of creative governance that each region/State of the country will have to develop for themselves.


You have this golden opportunity to recalibrate the direction of our governance, to build a more sustainable society that will deliver truly viable development to our people.

I must remind you that you belong to a generation of Nigerian leaders that is quickly getting off the stage, having been previously responsible for the pitiable state that the country is in. You have this golden opportuntiy to rewrite the history of your generation by working hard to leave these simple, yet lasting legacies that the bright future of Nigeria will rise out of.

Mr. incoming President, I wish you sound health and indefatigable will to midwife the Nigeria of our dreams during your tenure as President.


Adedayo Oderinu writes from Osun State, Nigeria
[email protected]

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