People Told Me To Reject Tinubu’s Appointment – Baba-Ahmed Reveals

People Told Me To Reject Tinubu’s Appointment – Baba-Ahmed Reveals

by Victor Ndubuisi

Hakeem Baba-Ahmed, a spokesman for the Northern Elders Forum (NEF), has discussed some of the struggles he faced before accepting President Bola Tinubu’s offer to appoint him as a political advisor to Vice President Kashim Shettima.

According to, Kashim Shettima’s special adviser on political matters will be Baba-Ahmed, the older brother of Datti Baba-Ahmed, the Labour Party’s (LP) vice-presidential candidate.

The appointment has been met with a variety of responses. However, Baba-Ahmed provided greater insight into the events behind the appointment in a post for Vanguard.

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He claims that while some advised him not to work with the Tinubu administration since it has brought about so much suffering for Nigerians since its commencement in May 2023, others thought he should see it as a call to serve his country..


He clarified that some individuals had warned him he would be perceived as having given in to financial pressure and given up his identity as a crusader.

In his words, “From a handful of elderly Northerners, we worked hard to create a respected Forum that today embodies the heterogenous, complex and intensely political North. I have grown from invaluable interactions with elders who are some of the best Nigerians I ever had the privilege to associate with, and I feel confident that nothing will change in my commitments to the values of lifetime service to Nigeria and the North.

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“It is to this same Forum that I took the case of the request of His Excellency, Alhaji Kashim Shettima for me to serve as one of his advisers. I had done a lot of consultation before then, and highly respected and knowledgeable opinions were sharply divided. Basically, one side said stay out. This administration has done enough damage in its first few weeks to last it four years, and they do not see the North healing under it. Stay away, it said, and avoid staining yourself.

“Your Forum, for which you are a face and a voice, will be accused of caving in, quite possibly under inducement, and it will leave the North defenceless. Sustain your critical oversight over the quality of governance, it said, and retain your respect. They will say you went after an appointment, abandoning your identity as a crusader of sorts for the poor and weak. They said you will be swallowed by an administration that has an ethnic agenda. They will use and dump you once you provide some cover for the final pillage of the commonwealth and the evaporation of faith in the viability of the Nigerian nation. You will be vilified by political foot soldiers who serve politicians, not the nation.

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“The other said look around you and see the state of the country. You have no luxury of choosing between helping to rebuild the nation and sustaining criticism of its state. Your Forum is not an opposition party, and it is not a prison holding back those who want to rediscover its mission as a responsible and constructive builder. If the Tinubu administration appears to have put its put wrong in its early days, it was not the North alone that has been affected.”



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