Why Femi Fani Kayode is different to most by Dr. Bamidele Williams
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Why Femi Fani Kayode is different to most by Dr. Bamidele Williams

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In Nigeria today, the social pyramid is inverted – the conventional elite who belong at the apex languish at the bottom of the pyramid, their personalities, views & opinions derided and criticised by the so-called new elite.

Some of the common masses who ordinarily belong at the bottom (as nonentities or in jail) are the new elite flexing their ill-gotten power at the top.

They hold an entire nation captive to their limited worldview, laying to waste any boldly contrary opinion in a race to the lowest possible standard of thinking or conduct.

Unsurprisingly, a parochial, plebian mentality pervades the powerful new narrative espoused by the new elite to perpetuate their new found position in politics and Government.

This narrative supports a collective amnesia of history, facts, standards & values. The reward for disciples who worship at the feet of the High Priests of the new national order is recognition, reverence and all the vulgar trappings of easy money.

So powerful is this narrative that The High Priests and disciples alike are slavishly praised & venerated by opportunists, the greedy and those who are simply slow-witted or mentally lazy.

If not, how can anyone challenge the intellect of FFK or his right to correct deliberate distortion by those who wish to mortgage our future for selfish ends?

The progeny of the legendary Sapara Williams, the first Nigerian lawyer who was called to the English Bar in 1874 and Rev. Emmanuel Adebiyi Kayode one of the earliest Nigerian Anglican clerics who graduated from the United Kingdom’s Durham University in 1870, FFK was born into established family wealth, affluence and education since the mid-1800s – he cannot bow down to the new High Priests or third rate disciples!

His grandfather, Justice Adedapo Kayode studied law at Cambridge University in 1921, was called to the English Bar in 1924, came top in the English Bar exams for the whole of the British Commonwealth for that year and went on to become the top criminal lawyer in Lagos of his day. He went on to join the Bench and was the third Nigerian to be appointed as a judge by the British authorities. All judges in Nigeria at that time were British.

His father Chief Remi Fani-Kayode Q.C. S.A.N CON, studied law at Cambridge University in 1943, was called to the English Bar in 1947 and also came top in the English Bar exams for the whole of the British Commonwealth.

FFK himself not only went to Cambridge University to study law from where he graduated with distinction with an upper second in 1984 but he also went to London University (SOAS) for his first degree. He was called to the Nigerian Bar in 1986.

From the age of 7 years old in 1967 right up until he finished at Cambridge in 1984 FFK had the privilege of studying at the oldest, finest, best and most prestigious private schools that money could buy in the United Kingdom!

These were schools that the children of the British royalty, landed gentry, upper classes, oldest families, and elites attended.

Like his great-grandfather, grandfather and father FFK went to the best universities in the UK but unlike them, he had the added privilege of having his entire pre-university education there as well. He never attended any Nigerian school.

He started at Cromwell and Dalkeith School in Brighton in 1967, then he attended Windlesham School in Brighton, Sussex then he went to Brighton College in Brighton, Sussex, then he went to Holmewood House in Langton Green, Surrey, then he went to the famous Harrow School in Harrow On The Hill, Middlesex and finally he went to Kelly College in Tavistock, Devon. It was after that that he proceeded to the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) at the University of London and then to the Universty of Cambridge.

Is it any surprise that the man is so bold and confident?

He can be vocal/radical and challenge the status quo – he has nothing to prove.

This is a mind cultivated and trained at institutions that have educated an aristocratic elite that have ruled England for over 500 years – the same elite that colonized half of the world and made their language and culture the benchmark.

This is pedigree pure and simple. As we say “bibi re one fowo ra!”

Perhaps those who challenge FFK’s intellect or compare him unfavorably with home-grown “talent” judge him according to thier own more provincial standards – this is understandable. It’s thier comfort zone. It’s easy to criticise what is beyond our experience or people whose privilege rile us.


1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. david

    August 21, 2018 at 2:14 pm

    I’ve always loved reading his articles and critical essays, and I’ve always known that FFK is made of real stuff. He is intelligent and bold. Not like the lily-liver politicians and charge and bail legal practitioners all over Nigeria who have lost touch with their profession, and can’t reason well.

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Updated on September 12, 2018 at 10:15 am