By Mallam Olawale Rasheed
In Africa, losing elections can cause depression and psychological disorders. Such sense of loss arising from rejection by the people at times transforms otherwise cultured individuals into deranged activists attempting to assess relevance using the same deceitful tactics that initially accounted for their principal being booted out of office.
Or how else can one explain tagging a man accused of being too pan-Osun as attempting to ‘edenise’ Osun?
Before responding to the Iree Polytechnic question, it is necessary to have this relevant digression.
Until last night, accusations I have heard against Governor Ademola Adeleke are mostly that he is over-favouring Osogbo, Ila Orangun, Iwoland, Ijeshaland and Ifeland. Several Ede people have called me privately to question the Governor’s neglect of his own town.
Friends called and questioned the Governor’s allocation of so many appointments and critical projects to places other than his hometown of Ede. It was thus strange reading from a lone disconnected voice raising false alarms about an ‘edenisation’ agenda. This allegation flows from residue of ‘anigbelemo’ mentality from jobless ‘olule’ operatives.
A friend from Osogbo who sent the piece to me last night asked if the writer is from Mars as he exclaimed that the Governor is ‘osogbonising’ the state. Is your Governor ‘s mother from Osogbo Land? he asked jocularly.
Another friend from Boluwaduro called and said Governor Adeleke is ‘orangunnising’ the state as Ila Orangun alone has the Senator, House of Representatives member, two commissioners and several Advisers. The Governor equipped Ila Orangun State Hospital first instead of Ede State Hospital.
Let me remind readers that Ismail Omipidan is from Ila Orangun. Governor Adeleke sunk a functioning borehole in front of Ismail’s family compound at Ila. There is none in front of Govrrnor Adeleke’s family house at Ede.
An Ijesa friend of mine at the office yesterday jokingly asked if the Governor is related to Ijeshaland. Probing further, his reason was that five commissioners were appointed from Ijeshaland holding such critical portfolios as Local Government, Agriculture, Health among others. Special Advisers from that zone are uncountable.
He also reminded me of University of Ilesa where Governor Adeleke appointed Ijesamen as Vice Chancellor and Chairmen of the Governing Council respectively. I told him Mr Governor is a super cosmopolitan leader.
For people of Iwoland, they assume the Governor is a closet ally. Two permanent Secretaries, four special Advisers, Director General for Development Projects, Deputy chairman of Muslim Pilgrims Board and Director of Highways for the state are all from Iwo.
A check through the list of permanent secretaries, commissioners and Advisers showed that Ede is not in any way specially favored. Other towns even have a clearer advantage ahead of the Governor’s town. And when a list of heads of tertiary institutions in Osun was drawn, Ede is just having one of its own which is not even yet a substantive appointment.
A check through projects executed by the current administration also reflected statewide spread. Construction is now ongoing at the Osogbo circular road abandoned by the Oyetola administration. The Osogbo-Ikirun road has been completed by the Adeleke government with plans to expand the project to Kwara state boundary. Major waterworks in Osun are undergoing rehabilitation with Esa Oke as the first to be attended to, followed by Osogbo, Eko-ende, Iwo and Ede. The current administration has also resolved the nest of corruption that stalled completion of the Ilesa water project and work is set to resume for early completion.
Road and water projects were executed in a manner that covers all the federal constituencies and local governments. Almost 40 kilometers of roads are currently completed spread across the state. Channelization and bridge reconstruction are witnessed from Ile ife to Iwo to Ayedade, osogbo and Irewole.
Only a mind suffering from post- election depression will descend to the pit of hell to accuse the present administration of ‘edenisation’ agenda in the face of overwhelming evidence and facts to the contrary. Such attacks reflect failure to innovate a logical line of attacks by the opposition against the present government. The piece is an amateurish push to paint black as white to a population that is even more educated than hack writers trying to hoodwink them.
Crash nepotism of the Oyetola’s government was still very fresh in the mind of Osun people. His appointment of an unqualified daughter of Iragbiji as Executive Secretary of the State Primary Health Care Agency instead of the most senior official was well publicized, ditto for the nepotistic slant of concentrating projects at Iragbiji to the neglect of other towns in his local government.
Governor Adeleke on the contrary is favoring people of Ila Orangun, Osogbo, Ijesahalnd, Ifeland, Iwoland and others in a spirit of equity and fairness. The Governor is blind to sectionalism and tribal bent in the state decision making process. He is fixated on delivering on good governance and rescuing the state from the mess created by the Oyetola administration. Incidentally, Osun people are fully aware of the ongoing restoration plan and are too smart to be brainwashed by agents of fake news.
Now to the Iree matter. The school management was accused of corruption in a petition which when investigated necessitated suspension of the Rector pending the outcome of the investigation. To select an acting replacement , the administration found traces of complicity among other senior cadres which will compromise investigation if any of them is to be placed in acting capacity. Hence a decision to pick an acting Rector pending the conclusion of the investigation.
It was with malicious intention to accuse the administration of attempting to manipulate the process leading to the selection of the acting Rector, It is mischievous to even link the Governor directly to the entire process. If the management of an institution is under Investigation, it is smart to have a replacement who was not part of the decision making process that is now the subject of corruption investigation. That the acting Rector is from Ede was immaterial as he was qualified by all the rules especially as he was appointed only in acting capacity.
In any case , a governing board has been inaugurated by the Governor for Iree Polytechnic whose chairman is now on top of the situation. The Honourable Commissioner for Education has also met the management of the institution.
Stakeholders across the state know there is nothing like an ‘edenisation’ agenda. What is ongoing is an anti-corruption fight where corruption is fighting back. When corruption fights back, corrupt elements normally lend their pen to sustain the reign of corruption.
All the cock and bull story by the writer flies in the face of reality. Osun people are experiencing Governor Adeleke not by hyping or fake news but by projects and appointments they see and enjoy.
In the last eight months , the administration has re-engineer governance within the context of good governance, open governance, pro-poor choices, value for money, localization, transparency and accountability.
The bar of governance has been raised significantly hence Osun today has a state ICT policy, a digital economy agenda, a global investment plan, a state sustainable industrial policy, a state tech innovation policy, a localized start up agenda, a not too young to rule agenda, a diaspora integration plan, a state workforce enhancement plan, an integrated youth employment agenda, a functional education programme, a preventive state health philosophy, an infrastructure upgrade programme, a fiber optic broadband project, a climate change action plan and a pro-citizen state leadership among others.
All within eight months!!!
The Adeleke administration is a symbolism of a modernized governance model far away from the anachronistic leadership style of the previous administration. This is not ‘snail’ leadership. This is a government under a vibrant global citizen.
● Mallam Olawale Rasheed is the Special Adviser / Spokesperson to Governor Ademola Adeleke.