I was baffled penultimate week when the news of the arrests of Messrs Layi Oyeduntan and Sunday Akere in Osogbo, Osun State filtered into my ears. It is not that it came as a surprise, but the issue that is made out of the action itself cannot but be considered in the court of public adjudication. If not, the rationality of the action must be weighed so that the fooling of the innocent public that has got to Everest’s level can be checkmated. If we will not go too far into the past, we may limit ourselves to the lifespan of Osun State which came into being in 1991. Further still, because of the unique nature of military regime, a consideration for the civilian era will adequately do.
Let me remind the interested readers for the umpteenth time that the state has had two civilian administrations before May 29, 2003 (including the pseudo-administration of Alhaji Isiaka Adeleke), and it is on record that there were no political prisoners during their tenures. They might have not been totally devoid of impishness, intimidation of political opponents was next to nil. There was so much tolerance, especially during the administration of Chief Bisi Akande that it was a man in the opposing camp, but who was co-opted in his administration that reminded him (Bisi Akande) that the graveyard silence he maintained over his achievements was uncalled for. Even when Akande was trying to convince the man that his performance as epitomized in the provision of social infrastructure and other welfarist programmes would speak volumes for his government, the man from the opposition insisted that things did not work that way any longer. That pressure gave birth to that informative Yoruba programme called LABE ODAN which came up regularly on the state radio and television stations simultaneously shortly before he was stripped of people’s mandate. That man, then, is Yemi Farounbi who still occupies the position today.
Why the alien political brand? Apparently, it will take the wisdom of God to fathom because the motto of the moment is “the more you look, the less you see,” though feelers from the seat of power in Abere have given us some clues which may not be exhaustively dealt with in this article. All the same, I will give a treat as far as time and space will afford. And there is always another day, when that can be thoroughly done.
A man under authority, but with ample authority to relish engaged me in a discussion which I found highly rewarding, because the product turned out to be better than the grapevine information that we’ve got used to in the past five years or so. I tersely asked him to comment on the state of affairs in Osun State. He appeared liturgical because what he quoted at the beginning of his response happened to have been taken from the Holy Bible: Ecclesiastes 1:7. “All the rivers run into the sea; yet the sea is not full, into the place from whence the rivers come, thither they return again”.
I appeared absolutely puzzled because it is like the Yoruba phrase “Eelo ni ikoko?; Ara omo le”. Ordinarily the interested pot buyer would have loved to know the price of the pot he intends to buy through the response to his question; but when instead of being given the price, he was given information about the child he does not know, let alone asking about the child’s welfare; then, it leaves much to be desired.
The man quickly helped me to untie the riddle. He said, and I quote: “Everything sublunary is on the move, time knows nothing of rest. The solid earth is a rolling ball, and the great sun itself a star obediently fulfilling its course around some greater luminary. Tides move the sea, winds stir the airy ocean, friction wears the rock: change and death rule everywhere. The sea is not a miser’s store house for a wealth of waters, for as by one force, the water flows into it, by another, they are lifted from it: men are born but to die: everything is hurry, worry, and vexation of the soul”. He told me this is the opposite of the principle in operation in Osun State. So the occasional stirs being experienced is in accordance with the belief of the grand master – Prince Olagunsoye Oyinlola. It is true he has a kitchen cabinet but his autocratic orientation always makes him to have the final say.
I went further to ask: “Why is the man so dexterous in the art of waging war against opposition?” The man just told me to ruminate over what has been happening in the state in the last five years. Desiring to tell him that many things have happened, he quickly alleviated my trouble when he narrowed it down to developmental programmes, like infrastructural development and human resources development. According to him, the guilt of undue privilege that is accruable to him always hunts him, and this is the case everywhere, though the portions of the governor, his deputy, down the line of the political office holders, are debilitatingly gargantuan.
It is self, self and self, like the ocean that is never tired of receiving waters from the upland rivers. So in an attempt to be left undisturbed, they cause distractions that people will find handy to be busy with so that the process of embezzling will continue unabated. If oppositions are left alone, they will have enough time to probe into the activities of government and, the more of the dearth of meaningful and enduring programmes they will discover especially people of Action Congress (AC) extraction who are very critical of government activities, since according to him, while father ocean is a great receiver, he differs from Oyinlola because the ocean is a generous distributor: What the river brings him, he returns to the earth in the form of cloud and rain.
Oyinlola is out of joints with the universal because he takes all but makes no return to his people. Because of this, people find it disdainful to entrust him with more: that is why he would not be voted for, and the option left for him was to force himself on the people through election rigging and all manners of indecorous behaviours applied in the last elections in the state. And with the arrest of two of the bold ones in the opposing camps, they will be far from minding government business with a view to criticizing it.
Only one thing: he who makes a peaceful change impossible, makes a violent change inevitable. If it is assumed that all machinery of oppression and suppression can be applied including slamming innocent people (with a sin of discenting) into gaol, the legitimate influence of God upon the people will help us to increase our watchfulness, and the desire to have it properly and adequately done will evolve, no matter the intensity of such effort at suppressing popular will.
What we consider as infirmity today, will turn to an asset for total deliverance tomorrow. It is not in our nature that we will be so daft as not to know that, to be selfish is to be wicked. He who is so good a steward as to be willing to use his substance for the benefit of his people shall be entrusted with more. That was responsible for the rejection that was experienced at 2007 polls and there seems to be no remedy in sight especially in the face of a wanton display of illgotten wealth which is not bringing us good, but pains in the souls and the hearts of men and women whose resources are being siphoned.
If voices of reasoning have spoken, and it appears they have all gone to deaf hears for expressions, we must hold our peace. It is like the robot molded and carved from the soil that is insisting going into the rain or bathing in a river: It is just a matter of time, the shame will soon be obvious. There is no place in the whole universe where majority voice can be quietened forever. It can truly be made to suffer delay of manifestation. Eventually, it will manifest, and with massive accolades.
This must remain the strength for Hons Layi Oyeduntan and Sunday Akere who are being oppressed at the moment on an invalidated trumped-up charges. The truth you stand for will surely vindicate you. Afterall, if you are that criminally minded, there would not have been overtures made to you to cross-carpet. And if they know that you are criminally minded and they still make overture, it means they are also criminals because birds of the same plumage concregate in the same vicinity!
See you next week God’s willing.