​Has he forgotten?| by Damola Akanbi

When Governor Lakunnbi of the pace-marking Odo-Aba state was declared the winner of the keenly contested 2011 election, citizens saw the dawning of a new era. That election was a war between two formidable camps of people of Aba-ile extraction and the oke-odo area of the state. The then governor 0f the state Alagba Olukayo, had boasted that he would break the jinx, and become the first governor to govern Aba-ile twice. Consequently, he was bent to be on a collision course with the Aba-ile elders that were against his candidacy. However, his high shoulder pads were soon to be flattened when labours and masses refused to dance to his moneyed overtures – some actually dined and whined with the larger-than-life governor, but shot hit in the back when the time for election came. Mr. Lakunbi therefore reaped from the disillusionment the masses and labour had with then incumbent governors and his then recently demised god-father.
 Meanwhile, Mr. Lakunbi victory at the poll would not have been smooth sailing without the contributions of Oloye Desolu in some respective. Desolu was former governor of the state, but whose tenure was marred with various political unrest and violence as result of break-up between him and his political godfather chief Aduunnbi. Desolu was also a contender in the 2011 election. Had Desolu not contested, the dynamics of the election might have taken another course. There also were reports that Lakunbi got some of his political ideas and strategies from Desolu’s wisdom.

It is quite sunk into many politicians’ heads that the house of politics admits no permanent friends, nor enemies, but permanent interests. Such was the case in the state from 2011 to 2015. Desolu and Lakunbi, the once closed allies soon became political foes; it was during this time that the erstwhile governor chief Desolu decided to re-launch his ambition of governing the state for second term. Likewise the former leader of the lawmaker, who was sent to prison on a false accusation of murder in 2010 also threw his hat into the ring of governing the state-and a vibrant young talented and rich man had also shown the zeal and will to give good governance to the people of the state. The inability of them to reach a consensus among themselves had a strong effect on the affairs of the state, paving way for nepotism, maladministration, misappropriation and tyranny to develop a strong wing in the state.

The 2015 election has been adjudged the best election so far in the state, unlike previous election where ballot snatching, mayhem, killing, arson were order of the day. A Yoruba saying goes ‘kosi bi a o se sebolo ti ko ni’run igbe,’ that is, ‘no smoke without fire;’ such is the case in that ‘best election’ as over-voting and rigging marred the election- a norm recurrent in electioneering processes in these parts. Lakunnbi was declared the winner of the election, making him the first re-elected governor in the state – ‘Koseleri!’

However, since the re-election of Lakunnbi the taste buds of the people of the state have seen sourness come to them than sweetness. Invariably the masses are now blaming the political elite for allowing their personal and selfish interest override the development of the state, for failing to anoint the young vibrant ‘rich-boy’- whose philanthropist transcends beyond the political wall of the state. Meanwhile, the deluded vision-glass of chief Desolu to position him as the new grandmaster of Odo-ile political structure-making him to be the chief appointer of politicians to post, also contributed to the menace facing the state.

The beautiful free education which had its root here is now a mirage. The educational structure of the state had been privatize by the administration of lakunnbi- a system that he benefited from his now a salty taste of sweat for the masses. While he was campaignings for re-election, he promised to provide free education for all citizen of the state, irrespective of status. It is necessary to remind mr. lakuunbi that all is not well and privatizing the education is like putting the masses in perpetual poverty. Lately his decision to sell-off the post-secondary school in the state is an act of ungrateful child. Had it been that the protégé did not provide free and compulsory education for him and his compatriot; will he have been there today?

Damola Akanbi

He is a poet,essayist and a politician.

For comment  and observation, email damolaakanbi@gmail.com.


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