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Tuesday, April 16, 2024

Of Bola Tinubu, presidential ambition, and Wolsey’s charge to CromwellB – By Okechukwu Keshi Ukegbu



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“When evil men plot, good men must plan. When evil men burn and bomb, good men must build and bind. When evil men shout ugly words of hatred, good men must commit themselves to the glories of lI’ve”.- Martin Luther King Jnr.

Ambitions are good. Nothing is negative about ambitions, especially when they are done within the realms of decency and responsibility. What is negative about ambitions is when they are shot beyond every reasonable limit. This negative pursuit of ambitions informed Wolsey’s charge to Cromwell thus”Cromwell, I charge thee, fling away ambition. By that sin fell the angels; how can man then,The image of his Maker, hope to win by it?Love thyself last, cherish those hearts that hate thee;Corruption wins not more than honesty .Still in thy right hand carry gentle peace,To silence envious tongues. Be just and fear not;Let all the ends thou aim’st at be thy country’s,Thy God’s, and truth’s. Then if thou fall’st, o Cromwell,Thou fall’st a blessed martyr. Had I but served my God, with half the zeal I served my King, he would not in mine age Have left me naked to mine enemies”.

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Cardinal Wolsey, it would be recalled , was adviser to King Henry the Eighth of England, but he was an overly and unscrupulous element.As overambitious elements are not content with their states, Wolsey was not content with the level of wealth he amassed and besides, he had the ears of the King.

Overambitious elements are noted for always going into unholy alliances to satisfy their selfish ambitions, Wolsey connived secretly for an alliance with France, and urges the king to divorce Katharine of Aragon, who has been his wife for twenty years. Wolsey hopes the king will then marry a French princess to cement the alliance. But the king falls in love with Anne Bullen, a Protestant. Alarmed at this turn, Wolsey requests the Pope to delay the divorce. A copy of this letter and an accounting of Wolsey’s wealth, enough to make a king jealous, fall into Henry’s hands. Confronted with the king’s wrath, these evidences of his double-dealing, and the loss of his offices, Wolsey meditates upon the precarious nature of ambition, and then speaks a touching farewell to his servant Cromwell.

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Overambitious elements, like the presidential candidate of All Progressives Congress, Bola Ahmed Tinubu, would not stop at anything in achieving their ambitions. This can manifest in the form of renting unscrupulous cleric elements to add legitimacy and credibility to their inordinate political pursuits. Here, Proverbs 6:16-19 comes into use”There are six things that the Lord hates, seven that are an abomination to him: haughty eyes, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood, a heart that devises wicked plans, feet that make haste to run to evil, a false witness who breathes out lies, and one who sows discord among brothers”. Also, like Proverbs 6:14 posits” Who with perversity in his heart continually devises evil, who continually spread discord”.


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