By Olaolu Bilau
Governorship candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Oyo State, Senator Teslim Folarin has declared that he is running the 2015 governorship race on a very strong platform that is far ahead of other contenders and would give him victory at the polls.
Senator Folarin stated this during a recent chat with newsmen in Ibadan. He added that he is coming into the race on the strength of bringing a refreshing and new approach to governance. The former Senate Leader, who said he has age on his side, stressed that it is awkward for old politicians who have ruled the state in the past to be angling to rule again, adding that it would have been better if such step aside for younger people to take charge.
Speaking on the fallout of the state PDP ward congress and the defection of notable members of the party such as Otunba Adebayo Alao Akala and Engineer Seyi Makinde, Folarin said their departure would not affect the fortunes of the party in the next election as the people on his side are more than those who left. He said he had made significant contributions to the progress of the PDP in Oyo State and it was therefore no surprise that party delegates unanimously chose him as their governorship flag bearer.
He said he was the first to openly criticise the current administration in the state, especially the urban renewal programme of the government, which he described as lacking a human face. ‘’Ajimobi has caused so much pain in this state. There is nothing wrong with having an urban renewal, we are also going to do it, but it has to be with a human face,’’ he stressed.
On Senator Rashidi Ladoja and Otunba Alao Akala’s ambition to rule the state again, Folarin said he has high regard for Chief Ladoja due to his achievements in business, politics and the development of the state, however, both men, he said have had their opportunity to contribute to the progress of the Pacesetter state and should not be thinking of running the state again now that they are advanced in age.
He eulogized the late strongman of Ibadan politics, Chief Lamidi Adedibu, saying he owes a lot to the late politician in his rise to political prominence, adding that other politicians in the state, including Ladoja and Akala benefited from Adedibu’s political magnanimity as none of them ever won any election without the late ‘Alaafin Molete’.