My attention has been drawn to a press conference addressed by the
Ilorin Emirate Magaji/Alangua Forum in Ilorin on Tuesday, 4 December 2018,
during which I was alleged to have said that the ‘Berlin Wall’ of the
Ilorin Emirate had been broken by the outcome of the 17 November 2018
by-election in the Ekiti/Irepodun/Isin/Oke-Ero Federal Constituency of
Those who made the allegation referred to a news item published in The
Nation newspaper of Monday, 19 November 2018, entitled ”Kwara Berlin Wall
Broken, Says Lai Mohammed”.
While it is indeed true that I mentioned the Berlin Wall in my speech
at the victory rally in my country home in Oro on Sunday, 18 Nov.
2018, it was undoubtedly in reference to the stranglehold of the
Saraki political dynasty on Kwara politics. Not once did I mention the
Ilorin Emirate during that speech, and I challenge anyone who has any
evidence to the contrary to release such. It is instructive that the
news item that was referenced by those who made the allegation never
mentioned Ilorin Emirate or made any reference to the traditional
It is safe to conclude, therefore, that those who tried to inject the
Ilorin Emirate into the whole issue acted out of shameful desperation.
This is not a surprise, considering that they are yet to recover from
the devastating defeat that they suffered in the by-election.
For the record, I hold the Ilorin Emirate, and indeed all our nation’s
traditional institutions, in very high esteem, and will never do
anything to bring them to disrepute. No candidate for any political
office in Kwara State will downplay the importance of the Ilorin
Emirate, which is a father to all. Those who are grappling at straws,
having realized that their hegemonic hold on Kwara State is coming to
an end, are the instigators of this lie from hell that the Berlin Wall
of the Emirates has been broken.
The traditional chiefs who echoed the fake news concocted by the
fading political warlords of Kwara should be wary of doing anyone’s
hatchet jobs. They should not allow themselves to be used to denigrate
the reverred Ilorin Emirate, which should be absolutely non-partisan.
The traditional chiefs must realize that it is only by standing up for
truth and justice that they can most effectively play their role of
maintaining the ‘ever solid wall of peace, unity, progress and
stability’ in the Emirate.
The defeat suffered by the tormentors of Kwara on 17 Nov. 2018 is a
sign of what they should expect in the forthcoming general elections
in the state. No amount of lies or other acts of desperation will save
them from imminent defeat. Power flows from the people, and it is
clear that the people of Kwara have totally rejected those who have
appropriated the state’s commonwealth to themselves to the detriment
of the long suffering people of Kwara State.
Alhaji Lai Mohammed
Minister of Information and Culture