What’s Next for Babatunde Fowler?

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Babatunde Fowler

Life, as man has come to know, is not a straight line leading to a destination where everything converges; that would imply that there are no surprises, no shocks, nothing that pulls a man out of the comfort of his control and smashes him on the rocks to be collected by the waves.

At best, life is a meandering stream, flabbergasting the napping soul at every turn. This meandering stream has flown Babatunde Fowler high in recent times, only to have him gulping at its latest act of abandonment.

To review, Fowler is the former boss of the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS). Known most notably before then for handling the Lagos State tax system and making gold of all that was grey, the FIRS executive chairmanship post fit him rather well. In less than two years, it became obvious that the money-spinning agency was created for him. With achievements announced here and there, this was the general belief of Nigerians. But the Federal Government did not exactly think so.

According to what was flying around at the time, the administration of Fowler was not bringing in as much dough as it should. Something was conspicuously off with the abacus of taxation because the expected stream of revenue was nothing short of a trickle. Needless to say, the Federal Government neither ‘trickles’ nor negotiates with ‘tricklers’; that was the alleged rationale behind Fowler’s replacement as FIRS boss.

Most interestingly, however, Fowler himself did not exactly agree with the outlook of the Federal Government. In his own view, a bald vulture produces a bald offspring – which is to say that the alluded ‘trickle’ owed its very existence to stuff happening in financial high places and had little to do with his management capability or now-disregarded genius.

But the will of the government must be done, which is why Fowler ladled all future aspirations away from FIRS, packed his bags, said his farewell, and walked off into the gentle night.

Questions are now being raised as to what that gentle night holds for him. Sharp minds are already plotting charts that seem to cast light on his education at Igbobi College in Lagos, the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater, and California State University – the result of which is a BSc in Economics, a minor in Political Science and Masters of Business Administration. He that hath an eye, let him see.