Nigeria Matters

Chief Femi Fani-Kayode: The Black Sheep of the Yoruba Race

Femi Fani-Kayode was born into the family of the late political gladiator and renowned lawyer, Chief Remi Fani-Kayode. Chief Remi served in so many capacities being one of the political bigwigs in Nigeria. And of course, he had helped redeem the image of Nigerian politics with his adroitness and dexterity. It might interest you to note that, he moved a motion that stimulated Nigeria’s independence in 1958 in the Nigerian Parliament. The name “Fani-Kayode” is not unfamiliar with the Nigerian political terrain and lexicon. In fact, it could be likened to such names as Saraki, Tinubu, Awolowo, Sardauna, Yaradua, Lafiagi and so forth. Chief Babaremilekun Fani-Kayode was said to have hailed from Osun State, Nigeria; a popular Yoruba clime. Hence, it is presumable and of course unarguable that Mr Femi Fani-Kayode, who happens to be one of the children of Chief Babaremilekun Fani-Kayode is a Yoruba by ethnic identity and denomination.

Though, one may find Mr David Oluwafemi’s writings and utterances interesting and seemingly an avenue to learn new vocabularies of the English language. Indeed, this is somebody well endowed and blessed with captivating styles of writing and speaking. I will not be jolted nor in the state of dismay, if in the future this man wins for himself a Nobel Prize for Essay Writing. He is worth it!

I am however sorry to state without mincing words that Mr Femi Fani-Kayode’s writings and utterances – not minding if they are well articulated – are antithetical and of course not in conformity with the very moral constitution and teachings of the Yorubas. His writings are always laced with uncouth and unruly words that are unappealing to the very cultural practices of the Yorubas and even the religion he claims to represent. Every culture, they say, has its own distinct norms and dictates. In the case of the Yoruba culture, one is not expected to be rude and crude to one’s age-mates let alone the elderly.

Yorubas, unlike some other people in Nigeria, are known for respect for elders. This explains why it is embodied in the “unwritten” moral constitution of the Yorubas that when the elderly ones talk, the young ones keep quiet. Also, the young ones should not have direct eye contact with the elderly while conversing with them. The young ones are also expected to vacate a place while the elderly are talking. These and many others signpost a unique thing, which is: respect for elders.

There are modes of correcting the elderly ones when they goof or err without cause for abuse. Mr Femi had in the recent past, consistently and repeatedly shown that he is disrespectful and uncivil. More often than not, he had been spotted using unprintable words to qualify the elderly – both the Yorubas and non-Yorubas alike. Our amiable Vice President, Prof. Yemi Osibanjo, an elderly Yoruba man, has over and over been a victim of Mr Femi’s uncultured usage of words. He doesn’t spare him at all. He employs harsh words in qualifying this man – not minding his grey hair – that one may suppose they were of the same age. He once called him “short man devil”. As if that wasn’t enough, he said the Vice President was also insane and had lost his mind. Lo and Behold! Prof. Yemi, if may not father Mr Femi, has all it takes to “elder-brother” him. The Yoruba moral constitution says that the elder brother has the right of a father.

Though, one may commend and as well laud Mr Femi and many others for serving as watchdogs to the Buhari-led administration. Whether their criticism is politically motivated or not is not the concern of this text. However, Mr Femi must be cautioned of the abusive, vituperative, inciting and insulting words he employs whilst criticising the government and other personalities. This is somebody who allegedly tagged our President a “rapist” even when this man has not raped his wife nor any of his family members. This, to me is demeaning to the status of one who prides himself as a “learned colleague” and graduate of the Nigerian Law School. One should have expected Mr Femi to provide a singular proof whether in record or what have you to back up his bogus claim.

Worst still, he remains adamant and dogged when put to correction. He runs amok and becomes more foul-mouthed when put to order – a quality of one who is unlettered, unscientific and has not passed through the four walls of the University. The above is glaring and crystal clear in his recent face-off with Mr Reno Omokri, who shares similar political thought with him. He was corrected by Reno when he misquoted the saying of Mr Atiku Abubakar. One should have expected Fani-Kayode to stick to correction, only for him to come up with his article titled (5 useful idiots and the spirit of the accursed slave) in which the “useful idiots” he made the concern of his text included his political crony – but at that time, a foe – Reno Omokri. He came with this article after resorting to name-calling and abuse of the person of Reno Omokri on the famous Twitter.

Baba Obasanjo, a one-time President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria; Mr Bola Ahmed Tinubu, the Jagaban of Africa and of course an elderly amongst the Yorubas; General Muhammad Buhari, the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria; Prof Yemi Osibanjo, the Vice President of Nigeria; Mr Atiku Abubakar, a former Vice President of Nigeria; HRH Oba Abdulrasheed Akanbi, the Oluwo of Iwo land; Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola, the Executive Governor of Osun State; Sultan Muhammad Sa’d Abubakar and a host of others were once victims of Fani-Kayode’s unrefined usage of words. It is very rare to find a personality in Nigeria whose sensibility and sensitivity had not been offended by Fani-Kayode’s “sugar-coated” crude use of words – both his friends and foes alike. It is once in a blue moon you read his posts without spotting demeaning words and derogatory remarks. This is somebody who constantly disparages, smears and vilifies the image of Islam and presents the religion as a volatile and terrorist one even when the religion preaches peace and tranquility. This is an idiosyncrasy of someone suffering from sheer hatred and aversion for something triumphing. Not only that but also an attribute of one who is “Far From Knowledge” – FFK – and as well untrainable.

One may assume that Mr Femi’s uncultured way of life is a consequence of his stay abroad. Where he learnt how to talk to the elderly as if they were mates. But this opinion might be somewhat erroneous as we have seen Yorubas in diaspora who live or studied abroad but still maintain and conform with the Yoruba moral constitution. The truth of the matter is that Femi Fani-Kayode has chosen the path of arrogance and unruliness as a way of life. It is high time Mr Femi Fani-Kayode was told about the aftermaths and adverse effects of his unruliness specifically towards the elderly. It goes a long way in killing the moral constitution of the Yorubas, bringing our elderly to disrepute, tarnishing our cultural heritage and corrupting the mindsets of the upcoming generations of the Yoruba lineage.

 

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