President Buhari’s infamous slapdown of his wife, Aisha, is the latest manifestation of some demonic powers far beyond the president’s understanding, a former Minister of Aviation, Femi Fani-Kayode, said on Friday.
Mr. Fani-Kayode said “demons were speaking” through the president, as he could not have uttered such remarks on his own.
Mr. Fani-Kayode’s diagnosis was contained in a Facebook post he made to support a recent column by Reuben Abati, a former presidential aide.
“I am ordinarily not a superstitious person, but working in the Villa, I eventually became convinced that there must be something supernatural about power and closeness to it,” Mr. Abati had earlier written.
Mr. Abati said the demons were so ruthless that some married men were deprived of the ability to exercise their social status, leaving their wives little choice but to seek alternative means of satisfying their sexual cravings.
Mr. Abati, who served as a spokesman to President Goodluck Jonathan, said his suspicion that evil spirits cohabit with officials in the presidential villa was the primary reason he declined to pack into an apartment provided for his family there.
Mr. Fani-Kayode in a lengthy statement posted on his Facebook page agreed with Mr. Abati.
The former minister said Mr. Abati’s column reminded him of unusual events that happened when he was serving in the State House as a media aide to former President Olusegun Obasanjo.
“I worked in the Villa for three years as President Olusegun Obasanjo’s spokesman on public affairs and a lot of very strange things happened there,” Mr. Fani-Kayode said. “Amongst them is the fact that the two people that served as Senior Special Assistant to President Obasanjo on Media and Publicity one after the other, namely the much-loved Mr. Tunji Oseni and then later Mrs. Remi Oyo, both contracted a terrible terminal illness whilst in office and died a few years later.”
Besides those, Mr. Fani-Kayode said a number of administration officials suffered varying degrees of misfortunes.
“Amongst them were Col. Solomon Giwa Amu, Obasanjo’s hard-working and good-looking ADC and Mr. Stanley Macebuh, his brilliant and cerebral Senior Special Assistant on Public Communications,” Mr. Fani-Kayode said.
Mr. Fani-Kayode, therefore, said he couldn’t but agree with the theories in Mr. Abati’s column, especially as it coincided with Mr. Buhari’s comments that had been deemed largely distasteful.
“When our president can get up and tell the whole world all the way from distant Germany that his wife ‘belongs to the kitchen, the living room and the other room’ simply because she dared to speak her mind to the BBC, then you know that he is in the grip of something evil and that demons are speaking through him.
“It is all part of the spiritual dimension of living in the Villa that Abati was referring to in his essay.
“The President’s mind has become twisted and he is now possessed by strange and powerful entities. He needs a lot of prayers.”
Mr. Buhari has remained under intense public criticism for the comments.
To further buttress his point, Mr. Fani-Kayode made allusions to a series of events since Nigeria’s independence in 1960 that he believed were not normal.
Those events included the passing or illness of historic figures and their relatives.
Mr. Fani-Kayode highlighted them as follows:Both Mr. Fani-Kayode and Mr. Abati have been mocked on the internet for failing to fathom the unique reasons behind each of the deaths and illness they cited.
“When it comes to our military rulers the story of consistent tragedy is no different- General Aguiyi-Ironsi, our first military Head of State was killed.
“General Yakubu Gowon, our second military Head of State, was toppled from power, exiled and lost his brother.
“General Murtala Mohammed, our third military Head of State, was killed and lost both his son and son-in-law.
“General Olusegun Obasanjo was our fourth military Head of State and we touched on his misfortunes earlier.
“General Muhammadu Buhari, our fifth military Head of State, was toppled from power, locked up for a number of years, lost his mother whilst he was in detention and was not allowed to attend her burial, lost his first wife, lost his daughter and now he has publicly described his second wife as nothing more than a “kitchen, living room and ‘other room’ wife”.
“His number two, General Tunde Idiagbon, was cut short under very strange and suspicious circumstances.
“General Ibrahim Babangida, our sixth military Head of State, was eased out of power and compelled to ”step aside” amidst massive controversy and turmoil and later lost his wife.
“His number two, Rear Admiral Augustus Aikhomu, lost his first son, Chief Ernest Shonekan, our first and only Interim Civilian Head of State, was badly humiliated and toppled from power.
“General Sani Abacha, our seventh military Head of State, lost his first son, was removed from power and was killed.
“General Abdulsalami Abubakar, our eighth military Head of State, as far as I am aware is the only exception and appears to have escaped any misfortune.
“Yet the picture is very depressing. This is indeed a catalogue of tragic events. Sorrow and pain just appear to be following sorrow and pain. It is a vicious circle of misfortune and calamity.
“Yet the most curious phenomenon and bizarre series of events of all is the fact that every single Head of State or President that has ruled our country from the Presidential Villa in Aso Rock, Abuja for three years or more has either ended up dying whilst there or has lost a spouse before leaving office.
“President Jonathan stayed there as President for four years in a stretch but the travails of his wife and her series of illnesses and medical complications which suddenly and miraculously ceased and abated after he conceded the 2015 election indicates that had he continued in office after 2015 he may have lost her and the demons of Aso Rock Villa would have come for their prey.
“Thankfully he left before they could lay claim to it and before the curse was activated.
“Babangida did not stay in the Villa in Abuja for up to three years so he and his wife escaped what has come to be known as the ”Villa curse”.
“It was the same for Chief Ernest Shonekan who, wisely, never stayed at the Villa at all but who chose to preside over the affairs of the nation from Aguda house next door and who remained in power for barely six months. General Abdulsalami Abubakar stayed at the Villa but he remained there for less than a year.
“However, Abacha, Obasanjo and Yar’Adua were not so lucky —each of them stayed at the Villa for three years or more and before the end of their tenure they either lost their own life or the life of their spouse whilst there.
“The story is that once the three-year mark is passed the curse sets in and the clock begins to tick. At the end of the day only one of the two spouses come out alive,” Mr. Fani-Kayode said.
The critics also said the two were hampering on conspiracy theories as a way of deflecting responsibility for their alleged ineptitude while in office.