It was a gathering of the crème de la crème of Nigeria politics Wednesday at City Hall, Lagos, during the presentation of Femi Gbajagiamila’s biography, written by a former President of the Association of Nigerian Authors (ANA), Wale Okediran.
The event was smooth from the beginning to the end under the able chairmanship of Femi Okunnu (SAN), a former federal commissioner for works.
Some notable personalities who graced the occasion include, Bisi Akande, Chairman of Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN); Speaker of the Nigeria House of Representatives, Aminu Tambuwal, supported by other members of the National Assembly; Bola Tinubu, a former Lagos State Governor; Nasir El-Rufai, former Minister of the Federal Capital Territory, ; Abuja; Governor Babatunde Fashola, Lagos State Governor and chief host of the occasion; Governor Ibikunle Amosun of Ogun State and his Ekiti State counterpart, Governor Kayode Fayemi, while the deputy governor of Osun State represented Governor Rauf Aregbesola who was unavoidably absent.
Some members of the Lagos state chapter of ANA who attended the event to give support to our own Dr. Okediran, the author of the highly praised biography, include Folu Agoi, former ANA Lagos Chairman; Remi Adebiyi, Perpetual Nkechi Obidiegwu, and myself.
Other various political big wigs too numerous to mention were also present too. What impressed me most was the cordial relationship that reigned between politicians from different political parties who attended the event. There was laughter again and again all through the ceremony as they intelligently used the opportunity to throw political tantrums at each other in symbiosis manner.
I was really thrilled because it was my first time of meeting some of them whom I have been communicating with on the web over the years, especially Nasir El-Rufai, whose hands were as soft as that of a well taken care Calabar bride when I shook hands with him while presenting a copy of my book “Fundamentals of Literature-in-English,” to him. A few other lucky guests received autographed copies of the book directly from me.
Encomiums were poured on the celebrant, Mr. Gbajabiamila, a ranking member of the House of Representatives, with many speaking about his characteristic truthfulness. The reviewer of the book is Professor Chidi Anselm Odinkalu, who spoke eloquently like a caressing breeze dancing the audience with rapt attention and admiration.
I could not sit still but went to him and had a cordial interaction with him at the high table after he had enthralled the audience with his superb review of the book.
I hope Nigerians will henceforth learn to say the truth the way it is supposed to be said as many speakers on the occasion described Mr. Gbajabiamila as truth personified.