Succession is probably one of the manifest problems of democracies anywhere in the world. Even the matured democracies are not left out. We are all witnesses to the sharp divide between supporters of Mrs. Hillary Clinton and those of Donald Trump now the President of the United States. America was virtually on fire. Caustic words were employed by both sides. The resentment from both sides was palpable and it reverberated to the far ends of the world such that all discussions worldwide focused on the American succession. Mr. Donald Trump, the billionaire businessman did not help matters with his bold racist stance, which gave more vigour to the divides. The election has been won and lost but the scars still remain.
Well, coming down to Nigeria and a little further to the State of Osun, the drums are beginning to sound, but bitterly, unfortunately. One would have expected a comical-drama type most often witnessed in the second republic when aspirants would want to display their prowess in control of local and English languages to mesmerize the voting populace. Uncle Bola of blessed memory won many hearts through this. Same goes for Adelabu Adegoke, alias Penkelemeesi (peculiar mess) and Ladoke Akintola, the oratory Lord, both of the first republic fame. One would have also expected intending aspirants of today to take full pages of adverts, advertorials or airtime in local newspapers and electronic media to marshal their antecedents, which they think qualify them for the numero uno position in the state.
I mean, one would have expected these politicians to go to the village squares or marketplaces, both physical and online, to display their political wares to the prospective (buyers) voters. One would have expected that they put decorum to display by restraining from uncouth tones. Worse is the half truths and utter display of ignorance by these latter day “redemptionists” who talk as if they wish to re-invent the wheel. But could they?
Continuity, irrespective of the succeeding person or political party, is necessary. Even the most vitriolic critics of Governor Rauf Aregbesola’s government will attest to the fact that he has transformed the state from its hitherto glorified rural status to a modernized one; the government has put in place what is now popularly known as Social Protection/Intervention Programmes apart from the massive intervention in the education sector through infrastructural and contextual deployment, never witnessed before in the history of any state in Nigeria.
The state has witnessed massive community as well as urban renewal in roads, which hitherto were death traps. These are not just ordinary roads but durable ones that could stand the tests of time and adverse conditions of the elements. Stipends are paid to vulnerable elders and this is branded Agba Osun. The elementary feeding system which is being adopted at the federal government level is an initiative of the government of Osun just like the Sukuk Bond. Government of Osun, through this elementary school feeding system has provided employment to many people at the rural and urban areas while also spinning up commerce for farmers and other suppliers. The beauty of this scheme is that it is “home-grown”, giving all the benefits to residents of the State.
The State might presently not be in the first position in the West African School Certificate examinations probably because of the rot in the system that predated the current democratic dispensation, which the government is ameliorating. But one thing that is certain is that the government is doing everything possible to take education to enviable position, in functionality, not just in paper certificate, which many see as measure of performance. The Ukraine-trained medical doctors and the Germany-trained agriculturists are just few examples of a determined government, to make education functional.
In the above context, it will be wiser for those inordinately jostling to take the baton from Ogbeni to play it according to the rules since it is their inalienable rights to seek the position. They should stop peddling falsehoods as they will lose at the end of the day when their falsehoods and shenanigans would have come to the open. A serious contender willing to take on the baton will, no doubt, go for tutorials from no other school but from the same man, Ogbeni, whom he or she wants to take over from. The shoes are too big for the tiny legs of hawks and legless sharks. They (the Sharks and Hawks) should rather be contented with where they are now…the Killer Squad of the opposition.