Festus Keyamo: The Man With No Shred of Integrity -By Jeff Okoroafor

Filed under: Life And People,Political Issues |

Festus Keyamo SAN


There was a time when Keyamo was one of Nigeria’s crusader activists, a time when his quest for money and fame was still within the wraps of conscience and bounded in grips of integrity. Those were the good old days. The story is quite different today because all that Keyamo cares about now is money and power. Whatever the man has achieved today, including his SAN, are products of corruption, betrayal of peoples’ trust and licking the butts of people in position of authority.

Keyamo started his legal practice in Late Gani Fawehinmi Chambers in Lagos at the height of the agitation for the revalidation of the June 2, 1993 election. In Gani’s usual practice of helping young lawyers grow, he positioned Keyamo on the front row of legal activism, representing icons like Dr. Beko Ransome-Kuti, Chief Frank Kokori and Ken Saro Wiwa as well as the duo of Chief M.K.O. Abiola and Anthony Enahoro who were arrested in 1994 and other NADECO leaders. These challenging responsibilities helped to build Keyamo’s confidence in trenchant advocacy emerging with the award of Best Lawyer in Gani Fawehinmi Chambers in 1994. The story didn’t end there. What many people didn’t know is that he was FIRED by Gani because he betrayed his trust. Keyamo was so anxious to reign that he engaged in nefarious acts just to get ahead of the line.

When Keyamo joined the Buhari team I thought for a second he was going to push for an end to the vicious cycle of partisan advantage and help his principal start exercising some form of restraint while in power. I thought wrong. He instead has so far helped him to further perpetrate evil, disobey rule of law etc. Keyamo has continually defended all atrocious and undemocratic actions of President Muhammadu Buhari and he has been handsomely rewarded for it – Keyamo alongside six others were recently appointed to the board of the Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation, NDIC. Earlier before that he was made the official spokesman of Buhari ahead of the 2019 elections. And I guess you already know how his SAN came about?

In the whole of Africa today, when we think of democracies dying we think of revolutions of military coup de tat, of armed men in the street etc but that’s less and less of how it happens anymore. Uganda, Gabon, Cameroon, Togo, and many of other unmentioned African countries…democracies now die when we are not looking, when we are not paying attention, when we don’t get involved enough to ask questions about democratic accountability. Our country is at a crisis point. Locked in an existential conflicts over tribe, religion, resources, identity, and culture. The signs are everywhere and flashing red and people like Keyamo instead of use his voice for good, is applying it for gains. Something must change. Something bold must be done. No single leader can save a democracy, but without a leader the people can trust, no democracy can be saved.

Instead of helping the president to find common ground with the legislature, the judiciary and most importantly, the Nigerian people, Keyamo is assisting him to scotch the earth between every Nigerian out there.

Someone once said people should worry about your character, not your reputation. Because your character is who you are. And your reputation is only what others think of you. Keyamo has shown over the years that his character is as flexible as his reputation. It is never too late to make amend and speak truth to power.

God bless Nigeria.