What is Political Loyalty?

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Loyalty and sycophancy sex themselves in a slippery environment without principles that outlines virtues, away from vices.

Abah Samuel Eleojo likened loyalty to “Faith”. I would extrapolate. Can someone who already knows the outcome of an event, pander to “faith”? If faith was within the boundaries of understanding, it would not be faith anymore.

Still, this is Deep obscurity, but when an outcome of an event is known, it does not demand loyalty. It demands “sycophancy”, because at this stage, you romance in stimulation because you already know the outcome as it should be.

There is something missing. Intelligently, he explains loyalty this way. Hear him, “The truth is that loyalty is like faith and hope in God. You give all, but none in expectations of his rewards and blessings without seeing God , so loyalty is working without thinking of being recognised but in expectation that it will pay off. A man who works to be noticed will end up being an eye service person and by extension  a big pretender and that is what most sycophants are”.

Abah’s opinion above is maturity in motion of accurate understanding, embellished in experienced wisdom.

In many political environments, many people labor for their interests, pretending to be loyal. In the end, they forget that loyalty is not to anyone, it is to a vision. Loyalty can never be to interests, except your interests are tied to the vision. Loyalty is never in words, it is in action.

Sycophancy is hitherto in words, fleshed by extreme choreography. It is also in words, towards expectations of any outcome. A loyal person is loyal without knowing why exactly to the end, why a sycophant is loyal for a reason.

Let me clarify the misnomer.

What is loyalty? It is a concept. It is also a concept map.

Loyalty cannot become a concept if you do not understand why you’re loyal. Loyalty is the ability to follow through a vision that has a defined outcome. It becomes loyalty at that stage because, you know where you’re going to and why you’re going there.

The need to understand how to be politically loyal accrue from the fact that it would arm you with the patience, courage, resilience and boldness to understand seasons and storms when following through a vision.

Unloyal were the children of Israelites on their way from Egypt when they saw the Egyptian soldiers riding towards them. They murmured. They began to rebel in tongues. They chastised Moses from bringing them to where they were. They cursed at God. Many of them said they would have preferred that they stayed back and enjoyed their slave master’s position. Many of them wanted out because when the going got tough, they forgot the vision of “Canaan”. All they saw was the Red Sea and raging army of destruction riding steadily in their chariots of death towards them.

They forgot that the same Moses had through his God, saved them by plaguing the Egyptians with infirmity so they would allow them go. They forgot the past sacrifices they had endured with Moses. They forgot when the going was good, they only remembered this moment. They had forgotten that Moses whom they crucified, left his royally position into an ordinary person to carry them on a vision. They forgot everything, they remembered only their current fear and turbulence. Their current pain swallowed everything that was the past.

That is how the political environment is. If you have many people on your team who do not understand the length of your journey (vision), if you car is half tank, you pull over to refill at the Fuel station, they would complain why you cannot manage the half tank until depletion without minding if there’s a long desert ahead that you may need to stuck fuel in many liters to carry you through, this time, without stopping until your destination.

If you run into a season of political troubles and turbulence, a loyal partner in progress marries your fate. A sycophant grumbles and begin to disembark because their expected outcome is now is total obscurity. A loyal person uses the day of sunlight in the past to console themselves while looking at the future you would all have eventually. A sycophant begins to analyze steps you should have taken to prevent the turbulence just like the children of Israel who preferred Moses to have allowed them stay in Egypt if he knew they were going to face troubles eventually. A sycophant begins to enumerate what others have done for them that you haven’t done and enlist it as a reason to abandon ship.

A loyal person follows like a fool even when you’re drowning, a sycophant withdraws back because they need to stay alive to achieve their interests through other ventures. A loyal person dies with you in shame and reproach, a sycophant tried to absolve themselves of blames. A loyal person takes the bullet with you. A sycophant dodges the bullet and saves their name.

A loyal person acts foolish when you do not meet their interests, a sycophant withdraws through actions to send a subtle message.

Mrs. Shola Adekoya was teaching an Organizational Goal Masterclass in 2011 which I attended. She mentioned something remarkable which I picked from that day. She said” staff who achieve organizational goals are those who know the shame and nakedness of the organization, marry their own confidence and clothe through efforts, patience and love towards achieving the set tasks/goals of the organization”. She further said, those ones retire with the organization and their loyalty becomes organizational rules of ethics for the future.

It was remarkable moment for me in life. It also opened my eyes to how we are entitled because many of our interests are not met, hence, we begin to get angry without looking at the intangibles such as “the whole organization” and her goals.

Anyone who cannot be loyal has the inability to also keep stable friendships with others because the moment they stop getting their expectations from the friendship, they dump the good aspects of their friends and begin to look for friendship elsewhere.

I have come to understand life that no matter how you’re denied what you think belongs to you today, if you keep working hard at it, keeping faith through principles rather than entitled expectations, it would come to you if not in the current environment, but in the next.

I remember a particular event two months ago. There was a particular man who attacks my personality always whenever I have political opinions. He would call me names. He called me many things. On a particular occasion, when my car broke down, I was debating with him somewhere and he said to me, “they don’t even care about you. You’re just doing eye-service, if they did, why can’t they even change your car”? Obviously my emotions betrayed me that day. I left the conversation, I cried.

I did not cry because I had a bad car, I cried because someone could use my own shortcomings which was not the fault of others to grip me at the moment of my vulnerability. In actual truth, if I felt since I didn’t get a car as examples of people who got one were always used to mock me, I wouldn’t be any different from the government officials we criticize for sharing our national patrimony, buying houses and acquiring assets just for belonging to public service.

I consoled myself. I worked very hard to buy my car myself. I know many of my age mates who haven’t even dreamt of it. I know many who are older and still trek. I know many old ones who can’t even pay their rents. I am sure when that guy was also my age, he wouldn’t have bought a car.

Would it not also be a tragedy for me to hand over my life’s success to an external force based on “entitlement” mentality?

I said to myself that if he could have that mentality, I was better than him because he would expect that his involvement in any vision was always for pecuniary gains.

In many political environments, we find that our expectations also makes us “small thieves” because of our interests. We only look at the center and forget that we are committing the same sins.

I would have another person tell me from the opposition that if he ever gets any political opportunity at the top that he would work very hard to bring me to his team because for everything that has been done to me, the names, the friends I’ve lost and even the threats, I remained focused.

So you see, loyalty does not lie in words but actions. People are also watching. Whenever you don’t get what you want, how do you react?

Whenever your friends are going through trying times, do you run away from them because you think they could have prevented their fall since you know it better?

On this Facebook, I am loyal to my friends. If you come after any of them to bring them down, I would not care about their offense, we can sort that out later insulting ourselves with the truth, but I would team up with my friend to the finish. That is what  loyalty means to me.

It does not have to make sense. It must not be deserving. It must not be safe. It must not be acceptable at all, loyalty is loyalty. It is to be in FULL, not half. It is not a negotiation.

– Promise Emmanuel (Kogi Rebel)


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