Email to Prof. Kingsley Moghalu- I believe in your capability
Good day Prof,
I would like to congratulate you on your declaration to contest as a presidential candidate in the coming general elections in Nigeria. Also, I became a devote fan of yours ever since I came across your profile on your well put website. You inspire me in so many ways that I cannot begin to articulate and I also realize that you would pass for a role model, a good one at that.
First of all, being a professor reflects discipline and focused pursuit of ambitions. This already earned my respect and if you were a lecturer in my school (I am studying for a second masters degree in energy studies), my graduation would have depended on passing your course (Macro Economics).
Secondly, your profile shows that you spent 17 years working with the United Nations across five continents. Even though I have had education in two continents, my work experience has only been in Nigeria and that also sets you on a very high pedestal. Going through your profile, one striking thing I observed (which I would say we have in common) is your focus and ability to delay gratification. In your own words….”Chiedu left Nigeria again in 1991 for his post-graduate education at The Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, turning down an offer from a friend to remain in Nigeria and become the company secretary of a new generation bank that was being set up in Lagos. His sights were set squarely on a loftier dream, one that called for delayed gratification. That goal was a career in the United Nations.”
With these perspectives in mind, it is safe to say that I (along with millions of other young people in Nigeria) should be learning from you and this is where I would begin the tone of our conversation.
You have a tremendous wealth of experience which is a great asset to our dear country. I would therefore advise you to set up a mentoring program where you would personally engage young people on career and life discussions. This can be an online course or an offline session as you may wish. If you don’t have a platform yet, I can recommend YNAG as a starting point. Your kind should not be seen only every four years when there is an election. You’re too great an asset to this generation.
I have not laid my hands on your new book (Build, Innovate and Grow) that outlines your plans for Nigeria but I have read the mind-blowing review by Olusegun Adeniyi on his medium page. He described it as a political manifesto, which provides a template on which a new Nigeria can be built with a framework for the collective empowerment of citizens. It is a valuable and potent resource material for current and aspiring leaders, especially those sincerely driven to reshape our nation. If you notice from the review, which was reproduced on our blog for young people to read, Olusegun is transparent, unbiased and corroborated everything your profile represents. Through your exemplary experience, you have modeled what every Nigerian should aspire to in life and career. For now, I am yet to see a candidate who can match your profile and pedigree.
Talking about the Nigerian politics which you obviously know more than I do, I am overwhelmed by your level of preparedness and execution. Starting from the book launch in Lagos (commercial capital) to your declaration in Abuja (political capital). You have mastered the art of connecting with the right audience. You already know that as far as Nigeria’s politics is concerned, 90% of your audience is still offline and for lack of better data, 5% are online and 5% are no where. Therefore, you didn’t join others to make sexy, fine videos to appeal to Instagram or twitter followers, instead you hired the social media warlords to play that role for you while you focus on the important things. This is very strategic and only a prepared, pragmatic leader can pull this kind of stunt.
Prof! you will also agree with me that your candidature is not so much important as the political party that produces you. I guess you already understood this and that is why you are yet to decide what political party to pitch your tent. No matter how good and excellent you are, you will need a party that has a strong political structure across the federation in all 774 local governments. This is why I found your declaration a bit late because if you already had this in mind say three years ago, it would have been a good time to set up a formidable party structure. An example I can cite right now is Maxim Suraykin of Russia who has been a member of the Communist Party since 1996, resigned his membership in 2004 and joined other young people to form the Communist of Russia in 2012. Suraykin is currently in the race against Putin for Russia’s presidency. Even though he is not the most favorite candidate, one could see the party structure which is built for generations. The goal of every statesman is to always look beyond personal ambition and set up structure that would outlive them. This is the expectation of young Nigerians from you. We can also study the example of Emmanuel Macron of France who started “En Manche” in 2016 and formed coalition with various grassroots political movement to win both legislature and executive arm of the French government. Like I said Prof, you know this more than I do.
As a newly enrolled disciple whose interest is to learn, I am pleased that you’re yet to declare a political platform. My initial guess is that one of the major parties may lure you into accepting a VP ticket bearing in mind that you’re from the South-East and federal character is still a major pain in our neck. I would suggest that you play the leader role here and have a joint meeting with the likes of Fela Durotoye, Adamu Garba II, Ahmed Buhari and other young people contesting for the same position to come together and form the real third force. These guys are garnering a lot of following, don’t try to go solo, you will need them.
On social media, I can already see a lot of twitter and instagram celebs flocking around you since your declaration. You already know this but I would still say it anyway; they’re not there for your good. They’re business men and women looking for the next client to suck. I am happy you know that more than 90% of your audience is offline, so don’t be too carried away with the ‘sexiness’ of their presentations.
On a final note, the real work in your electioneering process is in building a formidable political structure and that is not sexy. I wish you well.
Adetunji Adeniran is a civil engineer, a political analyst and currently works on YNAG, a platform the encourages and enables young people’s participation in governance and politics in Nigeria.