Nigeria News

When Writings Instead of Character Failed Festus Adedayo

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Nigeria News take a look at the appointment and disappointment of Festus Adedayo, the Tribune columnist as the CPS to Ahmed Lawan.

His name rings a bell. His pen cuts like a two-edged sword. His writings are venomous but he is a jolly good fellow still. The Tribune columnist, Festus Adedayo is nobody’s friend when it comes to analyzing and criticizing the government and public office holders.

He dissects the private sector and yet he praises the lucky ones with his sharp pen. Having studied philosophy in his first degree and voraciously taking the bigger step of bagging a doctoral degree, Adedayo eventually became a voice to change government policy.

He has served as Chief Press Secretary for elected public office holders, some of whom were governors and bowed out with his shoulders held so high.

But in the last four years, Adedayo seems to have hit the ruling All Progressives Congress so hard that the youths of the party and elders now want his head.

The columnist never spared President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration. He wrote about the national leader of the party, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu and the former President of the Senate, Bukola Saraki and criticized the present government with his pen.

Yet he has continued to win the hearts of many politicians, including the current President of the Senate, Ahmed Lawan whom on Tuesday announced Adedayo as his Chief Press Secretary.

“A critic of the government and the party, no way,” those who had dreamt of such position and had long sold their conscience to APC cried out. They are equally qualified but their problem is that the public knows where they belong. Their by-lines are enough to define the party they support and at times the direction of their write-ups.

Adedayo’s appointment came in a jiffy but not after Lawan had conducted a personal interview with him and some other qualified journalists and found that the Tribune columnist was the best. His appointment was cancelled a day after.

Sackadedayo filled the Twitter space, the APC journalists kicked against the appointment, which to me was won purely on professionalism. But to those who wanted Adedayo out, the columnist did not deserve to work for APC because he criticizes APC government.

I think criticism is not synonymous with cynicism. Of course, Adedayo writes and criticizes, he has not been fanatical with his conviction and has no time committed libel with his writing.

His name was put on the table alongside many others, including those who have turned their pages to the appendages of the ruling party but Lawan chose him because of his professional diligence and character.

To me, the view of most media professionals about the public appointment of their colleagues is practically unfair to the ethics of this noble profession. It underpins the idea that some reporters write with the minds of sowing a seed that must be compensated with an appointment. And when the appointment refuses to come, anger sets in against those who genuinely write to change government policy for the larger populace to live a good standard of life.

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