Issues On Arthur Eze’s Visit To Buhari | Independent Newspapers Limited
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Letters, Opinion

Issues On Arthur Eze’s Visit To Buhari

Posted: May 26, 2015 at 12:13 am   /   by   /   comments (0)

On the 27th of April 2015, the print media was awash with comments made by Prince Arthur Eze on the occasion of his congratulatory visit to the President- elect, Mohammadu Buhari in Abuja. Arthur Eze was said to have commented that Buhari’s victory was an act of God. He further said that by Buhari’s victory, oil companies that had left the country have started retuning to Nigeria. Specifically, Arthur Eze said:  “We are glad that General Buhari is one of the most discipline leaders that we have in Africa and particularly in Nigeria. He is going to organise this country so that you will see all these poor people again. Things will change in this country. It is God that gives power, and God has given it to Buhari. He is coming to change our economy especially the oil sector, as you can see, most of the oil company who left Nigeria are now coming back.”

Although, nobody could fault the fact that Buhari’s victory at the polls was an act of God; however, his comment that the returning of oil companies consequent upon Buhari’s victory is a function of confidence the companies have on the personality of the President-elect and this may have presented a dilemma of sort to those who see Arthur Eze as a close friend of the outgoing President, Goodluck Jonathan. To these set of people,Chief Eze’s vote of confidence comment on Buhari as far as the oil companies are concerned could be seen as indictment of Jonathan’s administration.

The question here is, as a major player in the oil industry, is Arthur Eze in vantage position to know if the oil companies that left Nigeria for whatever reason[s], have started returning to Nigeria. A follow up question will be: if Arthur Eze is right in his claim of the return of these oil companies, was the occasion he made the comment appropriate? If the comment was a statement of fact, could it be seen as betrayal of President Jonathan’s friendship? These questions become necessary in view of the sentiment being expressed in some quarters that Prince Arthur Eze has abandoned outgoing President Jonathan for Buhari because he lost the presidential election.

Robert Green’s 48 laws of power as far as power relation is concerned best illustrate the relationship between Arthur Eze and President Jonathan. Law 24 of this book, which enjoins one to Play The Perfect Courter, is apt here. It has this to say: The perfect courter thrives in the world where everything revolves around power and political dexterity. He has mastered the art of indiscretion; he flatters, yields to superiors, and asserts power over others in the most oblique and graceful manner. Learn and apply the laws of courtship and there will be no limit to how you can rise in the court. One of the laws of court politics, which has direct bearing on the issue on ground, is: Never Criticize Those Above You Directly. Here it says: This may seem obvious, but there are often times when some sort of criticism is necessary –to say nothing, or to give no advice, would open you to risks of another sort. You must learn, however, to cough your advice and criticism as indirectly and as politely as possible. Think twice, or three times, before deciding you have made them sufficiently circuitous. Err on the side of subtlety and gentleness.

In the court of President Jonathan, Prince Arthur Eze could not have directly questioned President GEJ on why the policy of his administration became so hostile that the oil companies left. This would only amount to direct criticism; the obvious consequence would be expulsion from the court and other unpalatable actions against Arthur Eze and his business. But those that know him would readily tell you that he is not a man that shies away from telling the truth. Surely the insinuation in some quarters that he betrayed GEJ on account of the comment he made about the return of oil companies that left Nigeria probably as a result of unfavourable policies of the outgoing administration, is rather unfounded; since nobody has disputed the comment. Considering that GEJ recently lamented that 80% of advice he got from his aides were useless, it is debatable if these same aides did not give counter advice to GEJ on how the oil industry would have been repositioned. Who then should be beamed?


•Emeka Oraetoka