There is a need to recall circumstances that led to the emergence of Mr. Abiola Ajimobi as governor of Oyo State in the April 2011 polls if only to educate or remind the political unwary if they had forgotten. One fact that is undeniable about the immediate-past Gov. Adebayo Alao-Akala is that he performed to the best of his ability. His undoing, however, stemmed from the fact that he stepped on many toes. First among them was that of the Alaafin of Oyo, Oba Lamidi Adeyem III, who at one time accused the former governor of attempting to assassinate him.
For anybody who is familiar with the politics of Oyo State, it is obvious that anyone who underrated the influence of the Aare Musulumi of Yorubaland, Alhaji Azeez Arisekola Alao, at that time was doing so at his own risk. Moreso, you would never find the Alaafin and the Aare Musulumi opposing each other on anything. Anywhere any of them was going, you find the other there.
In the build-up to the 1999 gubernatorial election in Oyo State, the late Aare Musulumi made financial donations to both the Alliance for Democracy (AD) and the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP). Although, the late Chief Bola Ige was pleasantly surprised at the late Aare’sgenerousity, the Aare Musulumi knew that any election that took place immediately after a military regime, was always won by the progressives in the South –west. So perhaps in order to protect his business and other interests, he had to pose as a friend of the ruling party in the state.
In essence, if the duo of the Aalafin and the late Aare Musulumi did not support Gov. Ajimobi’s election, the PDP would have carried the day. Even at that then, the final results showed the ruling APC having 13 members of the State House of Assembly, PDP- 12 while Accord Party, 7. But unfortunately for the PDP then, the court nullified the election of the PDP member from Orelope State Constituency and replaced him with his APC opponent.
Recently added to that were the defections from the PDP and Accord Party to APC of their members from Ibarapa East State Constituency, Hon. Michael Adeyemo, Hon. Mathew Abioye from Ogo-Oluwa State Constituency (both PDP members); Hon. Ibrahim Bolomope from Egbeda State Constituency and Hon. Temitope Olatoye from Lagelu State Constituency (both from Accord Party).
Interestingly enough, one wonders whether the APC members soon forgot the fact that if not for the cooperation of members of the Accord Party in the House, the ruling party wouldn’t have had the privilege of producing the Speaker. And now, the Deputy Speaker who is from Accord Party is being prevented from presiding over the affairs of the House whenever “Madam Speaker” is not around.
Another important fact to note happened in November 2011 when members of the defunct ACN from Ibadan North Local Government swooped on workers mobilized by the Deputy Speaker to the site of a dilapidated road at Oke Apon Area. The supporters of the defunct ACN claimed that the lawmaker overstepped his bounds by attempting to bear the responsibility of a local government.
The same scenario repeated itself when the then ACN supporters attacked workers mobilized by Dr. Ibrahim Olaifa, an Accord Party member of the House of Representatives to the site of another dilapidated road in Oluyole Local Government. As things are now, the suffering masses believe that the Accord Party is more interested in their welfare than the ruling APC in the state. This is definitely a big minus on the part of the ruling party in Oyo State.
Recently, the Leader of the Accord Party, former Gov. Rashidi Ladoja was in the news, as some PDP bigwigs were prevailing on him to be the flag bearer of the party in the 2015 general elections in Oyo State. If the PDP succeeds in getting Ladoja back to its fold, that development would seriously bring Ajimobi down to its knees. The recent fracas between two members of the State House of Assembly, Temitope Olatoye (Sugar) and Ahmed Adigun (both APC lawmakers ) jostling for the ticket to represent the same Akinyele/Lagelu Federal Constituency in the House of Representatives led to a serious pandemonium as their supporters clashed, which consequently disturbed the peace of Ibadan residents. The recent mayhem that erupted in Ibadan a few weeks ego is still fresh in the memory of many as scores of people were injured while a policeman lost his life.
Although, PDP, Accord, Labour and APC began trading blames, but that notwithstanding, the worst has been done.
Indeed, if truly the “Mr. Governor” wants his second term ambition to be a realizable dream, it is now time for him to put his house in order. If he doesn’t do so and the opposition takes over, the opposition would also inherit his performance and affect the development of the “Pacesetter State.”
By so doing, the hope of the electorate would have been dashed. There is the need for the governor to educate his supporters/APC members on the exigencies of the time before 2015 general election.
A word is enough for the wise, but for the ones who care to listen.
*Oladele is on the staff of WESTERN POST. 08105500807.Texts Only.