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Nigeria

The #AmaechiTapes and the Low Budget Lai Mohammed Called Tolu Ogunlesi

With Reno Omokri

Many Nigerians would have by now heard my #AmaechiTapes. Let me assure Nigerians that they are genuine, un-doctored and reflect the private thinking of not just Rotimi Amaechi, but even many leading members of the selfish elite that imposed an inept and nepotistic leader on Nigeria.

If you have paid attention to the whole saga, you would know that Rotimi Amaechi himself has not said anything with regards to the tapes. He has sponsored various faceless and known minions to try to muddy the waters, but he himself has not said anything about the tapes.

Rotimi Amaechi and his ilk know that Buhari will bring Nigeria to ruins if he wins a second term. They know that in 2014 when Goodluck Jonathan was President, Aliko Dangote’s net worth was $25 billion, but by 2017, Dangote was worth less than half of that, at $12.4 billion. That is not the end of the story. Forbes released its latest rich list on Wednesday January 9, 2019 and Dangote is now worth $10.3 billion. He has shed 60% of his 2014 worth. No wonder he rejected his appointment into Buhari’s Re-Election Campaign Council.

These guys know the truth, including Bola Tinubu, but greed, personal aggrandizement, lust for power and inordinate ambition will not let them speak that truth publicly.

I actually implemented my plan like a military operation. I set up the Buhari Presidency because I know exactly how they operate. The engine of the Buhari government is propaganda and I anticipated them. I knew if I released the full #AmaechiTapes, they would say it was fake. So, I started with a 7 second sneak peak and pretended that was all I had.

And like a fish to its bait, the Presidency, through Tolu Ogunlesi, admitted that the voice is actually Amaechi, but they claimed that it was from 2014, and that Mr. Amaechi was referring to former President Jonathan.

Tolu swallowed my bait, hook, line and sinker and then some more. Tolu had been sidelined for years at the Villa and he sensed that this was his time to shine and earn his pay and perhaps betray his real boss, El-Rufai, by worming his way into the hearts of the two-man cabal now controlling Nigeria from behind the scenes.

And so on the same day that Mr. Ogunlesi made a fool of himself, I released the full audio which cleared any doubt as to which President, Rotimi Amaechi was referring to.

In a state of panic and confusion, Mr. Ogunlesi then made a 180-degree turn. No longer was it from 2014. No! The new line is that it was doctored. And so I released Part 2 and they claimed it was edited out of context. I give them kudos for coming up with creative excuses. That I give them.

But let me now take some time to address the character known as Tolu Ogunlesi. Tolu is someone I know very well. This is someone who would see me when I was in office as SA to former President Jonathan and would kiss my behind, calling me ‘oga’ and boss in front of witnesses like Dr. Andrew Okolie and others. I actually even invited Tolu to review one of my books, Shunpiking: No Shortcuts to God (it never happened and Mrs. Omotayo Omotosho reviewed it).
This was a fellow who would call me and ask me to speak to Reuben Abati about following him on Twitter, which I accomplished even though Reuben Abati warned me about him (I should have listened). Tolu would talk with me on phone and we would exchange banters about beautiful women, like Bianca Ojukwu (not in a disrespectful way).

I even preached the word of God to Tolu when he took to Twitter to insult and castigate Bishop David Oyedepo, Senior pastor and founder of the Living Faith Christian Church International. In December 2011, Tolu had gone on a rant insulting the man of God because he slapped a witch who said she was “a witch for Jesus”, and I called him and appealed to him to respect the mantle of God over Bishop Oyedepo, to which Tolu responded to me thus ‘let Oyedepo go and die for our sins like Jesus Christ’. I kid you not!

In fact, one of the themes of the Jonathan years, the term ‘breath of fresh air’ was actually coined by Tolu, and it was used on the back cover of one of the books I wrote to promote the Jonathan administration, with credit duly given to Tolu.

I actually thought Tolu Ogunlesi was my friend and I looked forward to leading him to Christ as I have done with Senator Ben Murray-Bruce. I would call Tolu to rub minds with him about media strategy and we would discuss as friends. I passed on a sensitive document to him so he could help me dispel fake news. I had so much confidence in him, because I thought he was a gentleman.

But boy, I was in for a rude shock. I could not believe how Tolu Ogunlesi stabbed me in the back, and not just at any time, but during my most trying time in office, when I was set up for something I was innocent of (my then boss asked me never to discuss that particular episode in public), it was precisely Tolu Ogunlesi that drove the knife deepest in my heart.

It was actually the most trying period of my life, when I thought my world was collapsing. If I did not have the love of God, I may have sunk into manic depression. I expected help or at least compassion from my so-called friend, but the most vicious blow of that dark period of my life was struck by no less a person than Tolu who I had looked to for friendship. I never knew that Tolu was gunning for my job, which he now has. With friends like Tolu, you do not need enemies!

If you are not a friend to a person, be bold enough to tell them to their face instead of pretending and then choosing their most vulnerable moment to stab them in the back and backbite them to oblivion. I do not know why people engage in eye service. There is no one on earth important enough to pretend to. No one!

What Tolu Ogunlesi did to me, he also did to His Excellency, Atiku Abubakar. Most people do not know that Tolu Ogunlesi was Atiku Abubakar’s media strategist between 2012 and 2014 before Tolu betrayed Atiku Abubakar.
Atiku Abubakar was extremely financially generous to Tolu Ogunlesi. Tolu knows I am a meticulous record keeper and I challenge him to deny this and he will know my reputation for record keeping is not a myth.

Atiku Abubakar housed Tolu at the most expensive hotel in Abuja, Transcorp Hilton, were Tolu and others I would not now name regularly met to fashion out strategies for an Atiku Presidency in 2015.

But unknown to Atiku at that time, Tolu was an agent of Nasir El-Rufai, a mortal and implacable enemy of Atiku Abubakar.

You see, the most consistent trait in the character of Tolu Ogunlesi is serial betrayal. And this is the reason he is treated like a leper at Aso Rock Presidential Villa today.

As a matter of fact, Bashir Ahmad, the Personal Assistant to President Buhari on New Media, who is supposed to be under Tolu, has more access to the President than does Tolu. I mean who would trust a betrayer who is only loyal to his stomach?

Let me inform Tolu that my sources at the Villa are probably even better than his. If he thinks I am bluffing, I refer him to a meeting at the Villa chaired by Laolu Akande, the spokesman to Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, and whose agenda was on how to discredit me because of the grief I was causing the Buhari administration.
At that meeting, Mr Arukaino Umukoro, SA to the President on Communication and Projects said ‘everybody needs a friend like Reno’.

Why was that said about me? Because I am known for my loyalty. In the rain and in the sun, I am for my friends, no shaking, not ever! Is there any human being on earth, including his wife that can say that about Tolu? If there is such a person, then I pity the fool!
But suffice to say that he is treated with scorn and disdain at the Presidential Villa because he was brought in by Nasir El-Rufai. El-Rufai is seen as over ambitious by the cabal, so Tolu Ogunlesi, coming from him is considered a mole.

Ever the betrayer, Tolu tried to ditch El-Rufai and attach himself to the Aso Rock cabal, who do not like El-Rufai one bit. He struggled, unsuccessfully, to worm himself into the hearts of the cabal and kitchen cabinet members. But they still do not trust him. Bashir who is a PA got an office space right at the Villa, Tolu did not. For months, Tolu Ogunlesi roamed around frustrated until at the intervention of Babachiir Lawal, the former and disgraced Secretary to the Government of the Federation, he got an office space at the new Federal Secretariat complex.

Since Tolu Ogunlesi does not know the meaning of friendship, let me educate him -a friend is someone who is for you. A friend is not for what you are for (that is a colleague). A friend is not against what you are against (that is a comrade). No. A friend is just for you, in good times and bad times.

If there is one thing Tolu Ogunlesi, his real boss, Nasir El-Rufai, and Rotimi Amaechi have in common, it is serial betrayal. They have no loyalty in them besides the loyalty to their stomach!

Let me end this piece by quoting a verse from The Holy Bible:
“For it is not an enemy who taunts me— then I could bear it; it is not an adversary who deals insolently with me— then I could hide from him. But it is you, a man, my equal, my companion, my familiar friend.”-Psalm 55:12-13.
And finally, someone should please tell that sidelined riff-raff of a presidential assistant NEVER to compare himself to me. There is a big difference between the sickly looking mercenary and I. Principles control my loyalty while opportunity controls his loyalty. My God is in heaven, his god is his belly.

Reno Omokri
Bestselling author of Facts Versus Fiction: The True Story of the Jonathan Years, and other books. Avid traveller. Tormentor of Muhammadu Buhari and the APC.

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