Sanusi: Failure in Mastering the Art of Timing – By Nse Tom

The suspended governor of the Cen

Governor of CBN

Sanusi Lamido Sanusi

tral Bank of Nigeria CBN, Mallam Sanusi Lamido Sanusi is a man I reserve much regard for; he is quite an intelligent fellow, this Kano born prince is so un-corroded in expression, his smartness and aroma of articulateness is area everyone will continue to give him high scores. Sansui’s westernized Fulani accent, combine with the packaging that places his content at top-notch in its soundness and logic. His demonstration and analysis of a good knowledge on issues and policies relating to national economy is what every management sciences student will look out for. This controversial public servant lacks a very key trait that embodies his professional call, especially in the aspect of timing and when to echo his voice or take action.

The circumstances’ surrounding the suspension of Mallam Sanusi is an exposure on his failure to master the art of timing.  My attempt to recapture those who recorded same failures shows the impatience in dealing with public service delivery. Let me recall a success story of a 18th century Frenchman, Joseph Fouche and his timing techniques that place him as a hero during the French revolution. Robert Greene summarized Fouche’s styles of timing in his bestselling book ‘The 48 Laws of Power’.

As a master in the game of timing, Joseph Fouche served in almost all the succeeding regimes between 1789 at the beginning of French revolution to 1815, i.e. he served under the revolutionary leader Robespierre, worked with the majority moderates as well as with the minority radical Jacobins, King Louis XVI, the Directoire as intelligence gathering officer and remained as minister of police under the government of Napoleon to a point of acquiring the title of Duke of Otranto, he equally served in the monarchical government of King Louis XVIII.

Unlike our Sanusi, Fouche saw many officialdoms of power game, reacted when necessary with undisputed evidences, speaks only when necessary, kept low profile most of the time to a level that his adversaries always failed in predicting his further steps. He quietly studied the motives and missions of power-brokers, kept personal records and use them at appointed time. These attributes was lacking in Mallam Sanusi Lamido Sanusi , this Kano born Islamic Scholar during his reign as the boss of the Nigerian apex bank never missed in the news for a day. Listening to his reactions to the presidential order for his suspension, one can see not just the disdainful posture, but poor knowledge of the law of power.

So unfortunate for the suspended CBN Czar, he allow petitions against him to reach his employer before struggling to drag the populace consciousness into the rots reigning in the free oil empires supervised by Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, (NNPC) with mission of pulling his colleagues along in case the sledgehammer falls on him. Indirectly telling the presidency I am not alone, your lieutenants are doing same in their quarters, you are aware and doing nothing. For almost five good years of his CBN saddle, NNPC has no audited account and Sanusi maintain silence for all those years. After studying the political climate at the moment and knowing the biggest weakness in Nigerian political life, Sanusi wrongly felt it was time to pour the oil on the table, which Nigerians applauded his courage without knowing the motives.

On confidentiality, Sanusi’s failure to protect official documents is another indictment. For example when the presidency queried Sanusi on all allegations against him, the documents were treated as confidential with the hope that his response will reconcile issues, and up till now we are yet to know the prince reply as he claimed to have responded to all the queries. On the contrary, the CBN boss letter of complaint to the President was treated otherwise. Who is holding the tiger’s tales, and what is the expectation?

After he brought the can of worms to the fore and argument ensued, his resignation would have starred him out victoriously, in fact, that was opportunity of throwing many haters into confusions, thereby attracting public sympathy if the government dare attempt to levelling charges against him. SLS as fondly call by admirers had wrong perception of timing and so deficient in the understanding of the gimmicks surrounding Nigerian political atmosphere, which is so complex and uncoordinated. A country where every public action is influence by the tools of ethnicity syndrome and religious bigotry up to a point that critical issues affecting our national life are always addressed through those instruments. A country where institutional failure have suffered management deficits, as characterised by elongated military rule which spanned for over twenty five years, thus denying us quicker acclimatisation with democratic cultures

Mr. Sanusi being a descendant of a feudal oligarchy is quite conscious of the cabal system that sustained itself throughout the political life of this country, and how the major participants seriously vowed to maintain their grip in all facet of political structures of the national economy, hence any careless whistleblower who overstep his/her bound will be mercilessly crushed. One need not seek the services of a fortune-teller to intimate us of the consequences awaiting who dares, as mafia approach will be squarely applied to tame such act.

I read SLS’s interview granted to Financial Times (UK) in January 2012 where he attributed the insurgency in the North-Eastern Nigeria to unequal sharing of the oil revenue in the country, as well as his remarks on public discourse, and then I queried his secularity status. After that episode, I knew that Sanusi will likely stumble into challenges of corporate comportment, as his radical standpoint will surely collide him the power brokers. This is because the traditional qualities for occupants of such position requires a conservative personae whose primary duty is to offer professional services to the national economy, not to involves in the social politicking and manoeuvrings.