Abeni Aso-Oke



Gov. Lucky Ayedatiwa
Abeni Aso-Oke

It is no longer news that Governor Lucky Orimisan Aiyedatiwa, the 7th Civilian Governor of Ondo State is interested in governing Ondo state beyond 2025 after the four years term inherited from his late boss would have expired. He was unambiguous in his response to Nifemi Oguntoye of TVC that nobody wants to be Governor for just one year. The Governor hinted us and he didn’t pretend about his desire to run his own race in 2024. That puts an end to speculations. Mind readers can be at rest. The people of Ondo state who are currently enjoying purposeful leadership should sigh with relief as the responsible and responsive leadership engendered by the Governor won’t end abruptly in 2025. Political associates can rejoice. Aiyedatiwa has made up his mind to lead the people of Ondo state out of the woods.

Abeni Aso-Oke

Political leadership is not the same as traditional rulership where a Prince reserves the right of ascension to the throne through birth. As much as politics advocates no exclusion because of extraneous differences of status or wealth, there are minimum requirements by law and sound judgement. It is indeed instructive that not all should lead despite the latitude of freedom expressed by democracy.

Corroborating my assertion, Plato, the great philosopher, in setting up a minimum requirement for knowledge in the place of leadership agreed that the human race will not see better days until either the stock of those who rightly and genuinely follow philosophy acquire political authority, or else the class who have political control be led by some dispensation of providence to become real philosophers.

Abeni Aso-Oke

Prior to his emergence as the Governor of Ondo State, Aiyedatiwa served as the Deputy Governor where he painstakingly learnt the act and the art of governance. From the 27th of December 2023 when fate made him the Governor, Ondo state has witnessed tremendous progress in all ramifications. I have heard people ask the Governor where he gets his magic of good governance from? The same Ondo state that suffered serious setbacks during the inglorious days of thick political confusion orchestrated by power grabbers? Aiyedatiwa has turned things around within a short period. A litmus test of his capabilities has shown that Aiyedatiwa is a serious leader. How then will such a great leader retire into his cocoon when there are so much to achieve for the people of Ondo state? How is it not dereliction of duty on the part of Governor Aiyedatiwa if he leaves the stage?

How is it not a waste of investment in his ability not to solidify the pathways to progress he has already initiated? Will the workers in Rufus Giwa Polytechnic Ọwọ who see him as their only hope be pleased if he chickens out? How about the Ondo State Civil servants who cannot afford to miss a caring Governor? The younger generation who are perpetually looking up to him for direction and guidance will be thrown under the bus? Aiyedatiwa has calculated these disturbing gains in his ‘nobody wants to be Governor for just one year’ declaration. It is a patriotic statement that births hope for the citizens of Ondo state.

There is a reason Governor Aiyedatiwa enjoys so much love from the people of Ondo state. The people of Ondo state are not protecting their Governor for no reason. There is something he is doing differently that touches them where it matters. Recall the lacerating inferno that engulfed the state as citizens lashed out on Abuja ill-conceived letter written by five legislators? The people even threatened to recall their legislators for being insensitive. If Aiyedatiwa has experienced such unprecedented love even beyond partisan consideration, the best recompense will be to put himself forward for the service of the people who love him dearly. That’s the only reasonable thing to do.

Governor Aiyedatiwa must have been immersed in the glorious boast of Athens, the City-state where no citizen neglects the state because he takes care of his own household. He is aware that nothing can be more comforting than donating his brain and brawns in serving the people of Ondo state again and again. As captured by Pericles, “An Athenian does not neglect the state because he takes care of his own household, and even those of us who are engaged in business have a very fair idea of politics. We alone regard a man who takes no interest in public affairs not as a harmless, but as a useless character”

As we fix our gaze upon the greatness of Ondo State which Governor Aiyedatiwa is leading and has declared to lead beyond 2025, we must be mindful of those who intend to be clogs in the wheel of progress. Those whose intentions are to plunder this land will attempt to distract the Governor but he will never be moved. Who doesn’t know that the kite flies better when the boisterous wind blows against it? Governor Aiyedatiwa has God and the majority of the people of Ondo state to his side and that’s his driving force. Tell it on the mountains in Akoko, the billowing oceans in Ilaje must hear and hills in Idanre should be alerted that there will be no vacancy in Alagbaka. There should be no end to progress and good governance in the sunshine state. Aiyedatiwa has put himself forward first. You can wait for the official declaration.

Sunday Olugbenga Abire is Special Assistant on New Media to the Governor of Ondo

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