The unconventional politics of Rarara

Popular Hausa politically motivated singer, Dauda Adamu Abdulahi, popularly known as Rarara, has affirmed the popular though a subjective saying that ‘‘politics is a dirty game’’.

The invective singer claimed, on a media chat right after the apex court affirmed President Bola Tinubu’s victory in the last presidential elections on Thursday evening, that this government, if it fails to recognise and pay back his contributions, which he claimed that absolutely no one other than Dr. Abdullahi Umar Ganduje and Rt. Hon. Aminu Bello Masari did contribute close to what he did towards APC’s victory in the election, he will dump the party and reveal those working against the party but have managed to sneak into the president’s cabinet.

The singer said he played pivotal role in uplifting the APC in 2014 that resulted in its victory at the presidential election which Muhammadu Buhari won, but to his amazement the government he invested so much did not care to pay him back or even protect his life and property.

At the verge of threat to his life, the then Inspector General of Police withdrew police officers that were guarding him. But his conviction that the then government was doing its best and was to do more to ease the sufferings of a common man and to pay him back personally was all in vain.

Ironically, the singer decided to be rogue if Tinubu administration ignores his request for a lucrative appointment.

Former President Buhari’s media aide took his social media handle to debunk Rarara’s claims, describing it as senseless utterances and that he does not deserve a reply because the claims are false. As for the songs he did to Buhari, none of them went unpaid as Buhari is the source of his recognition.

Consequently, people’s reaction to this issue cannot be appealing to the singer who thought he is doing it for them. He was insulted for betraying his former boss. But contemporary politically motivated singers are only out for ‘business’ and are into the deal with highest bidder.

Any opponent stands a chance of being ridiculed through his ‘invective barb’ songs and interviews or social media ‘reels’. He uses his lyrical talent to woo voters and expose the oppositions to public ridicule as Professor Abdallah Uba Adamu, an ethnomusicologist cautioned, ‘he used his skills to abuse, insult and body shame anyone he was paid to insult, including former masters and associates’.

Politicians hold positions of power and authority, and with that power comes a responsibility to be accountable for their actions, hence they need to always be ready for whatever repercussions that may pop up, given the issue at hand, it could have a positive or negative standpoint to Buhari and Rarara himself; Buhari for his ‘negligence’ and Rarara for his ‘impatience’.

Rarara’s political ideology is purely personal, just like other average politicians that struggle for position, fame, recognition, or getting followers, and at the same time struggle to evade losing followers, leaving office or get them demeaned and to his claim, that is what he got from the previous government despite his immense contributions to its victory in elections and his continuous support overtime.

Supposedly political songs promote purer ideologies in a convincing manner with utmost respect like that of Sa’adu Zungur that will be remembered for his legacy and his contributions to the political and social discourse in Northern Nigeria during crucial periods. Had Rarara’s literary pursuits advocate the rights of common people, all the threats he faced will not be so intense and he would have not be denied access to the hierarchy.

Ideally, Rarara’s lyrical brilliance are no doubt of artistic excellence but lacks authenticity, clarity, and adaptability to express a viewpoint that encourages unity, understanding and dialogue since his songs have power to evoke emotions and amplify an impact.

Advisedly, Rarara and pro-Buhari warriors should calm down and accept the outcome of what their government had sown for years. Nigerians have rigorously waited for the so-called ‘change’ promised to them that Rarara lured them into believing, lo and behold, the same man that wooed people into abstract fantasies came out declaring his utmost dissatisfaction with the level of the expected ‘change’ and tagged the administration as ‘terribly worst’ and threatened to actively oppose who he worked for if his wishes are not swiftly taken into consideration.

I believe Rarara has no predecessor anywhere that shamelessly rained foul language on political opponents and could hardly influence upcoming singers only if law and order are imposed to regulate the lyrical construction as well as its delivery. The need to revive and equip the NBC with possible power to ensure that media content aligns with ethical and professional standards is paramount and anything possible should be done to do away with hate speech, obscenity, and all contents that are deemed inappropriate.

To the right thinking patriots, Rarara was once interviewed by the BBC before last general elections where he reaffirmed his unapologetic love and support to Buhari administration and carelessly called for additional four or five more years to Buhari’s unrewarded two terms because of an amazing mission they have for the nation. Did he not see all this coming?

Yusuf Sani,

Department of Mass Communication,

Borno State University, Maiduguri