“In our quest for leadership of Ogun State in the coming dispensation, we must do everything possible to restore sanity to the office of governor.”
With the 2019 general elections getting closer, political actors are now quick at taking advantage of every opportunity available to woo electorate to their sides. One of such occasions was the recent Akesan Day Celebration in Iperu, a town in Ogun State. Among other dignitaries, the governorship candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Prince Dapo Abiodun, and a notable stalwart of the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Hon. Ladi Adebutu, were both on hand to catch a glimpse of what was in the offing for the day.
With such coincidence, it was not unexpected that there would be some tirade of words among the gladiators, which to some people, could only add up to the excitement of the moment, if decorum is put into it. But to the chagrin of all, Adebutu, a son of a business mogul, Sir Kesington Adebutu, went the extra mile when he grabbed the microphone, observed the protocols and started reeling out his father’s achievements in philanthropy and community development.
To top it all, he came hard on the standard bearer of the APC (Abiodun) with a salvo, challenging him to point at his other investments in Iperu town other than a petrol station he had built. Both of them are bonafide indigenes of the town and, therefore, have a stake in it.
Silence seized the atmosphere, as audience cringed in disbelief. Though the outburst drew a loud ovation from his (Adebutu’s) supporters, some concerned members of the audience felt that the action was less than desirable. And so they were all expecting a reprisal missile from Abiodun. But they were disappointed.
When it was his turn to address the gathering, the APC gubernatorial hopeful simply ignored the brickbats and enjoined all concerned stakeholders to reflect on how best to develop Iperu town.
Pundits were quick to list some of the qualities expected from any candidate who is going to govern the state in the next election. One of the concerned stakeholders who did not want his name in print, speaking with Sunday Sun on the sidelines of 33rd celebration of Akesan Day in Iperu-Remo, said: “Everybody has a fundamental right to aspire for any position he or she so desires, but that should not make people to make mockery of the task of governance. Leadership is not a tea party; governance is a very serious business, not for funny characters. It is, without being immodest, a job for the fittest.
“In our chequered history, we have seen how best and how worst we have been governed by those who have no business in being in government and those who do not have an idea of what governance is all about. We do not need to mention names. Personality is one essential ingredient that is central to leadership. Humility and modesty are essential ingredients of leadership, he posited.
According to him, electioneering should be issue-based and not on flimsy and childish taunts. He further stressed the need to build consensus on the leadership character that would take over the reign of power in the coming election. His words: “In our quest for leadership of Ogun State in the coming dispensation, we must do everything possible to restore sanity to the office of governor. We must take integrity as a minimum condition for leadership. This is our responsibility as electorate. Ogun State with abundant human and natural resources is far more sophisticated to be entrusted in the hands of novices who seek office just for the appellation – His Excellency.
“The old order must change. Our search for leadership, this time around, should be based on merit and not money, experience and not ego, humility and not harassment, preparedness and not prejudice, he declared.
On his own part, a former Director General (DG), Sen Ibikunle Amosun Campaign Organisation (SIACO) re-election in 2015, Chief Bode Mustapha, said the mission of Dapo Abiodun, an oil magnate and an Iperu-Remo Prince, is to rescue the people of the state from slavery. His words: “Dapo Abiodun was brought to rescue us from slavery. So, let us make sacrifice. I am one of those whose lives were put on the line. Assassins were sent after me. But there is nothing that is going to make me shake in whatever that I believe in. Let us learn how to make sacrifice.
“Today, Dapo Abiodun is the authentic governorship candidate of the APC in Ogun State.
“Some people have to feast on lies and untruth, but oftentimes, lies can be the opium of those who don’t have knowledge of what is happening. Let us forget the issue of democrats or any group, but let us come together to win the upcoming 2019 governorship election in the state.
“Let us share hands of friendship and ensure that Dapo Abiodun is installed as the next governor of Ogun State”, Mustapha said.
Also speaking in the same vein, Deputy Speaker, Ogun State House of Assembly, Hon Olakunle Oluomo, expressed confidence in the capacity of Abiodun to take Ogun to the next level, saying “Let us remain steadfast.
Some motorists, who spoke with Sunday Sun, said Abiodun’s filling station in Iperu had always been the saving grace for the whole of Remoland, as it always dispensed fuel at regulated price each time there was fuel crisis in the country.