Osdf: Your name sir?
Adeniji: I am Honourable Abdul-Rauf Adekunle Adeniji, alias ‘Congo’
Osdf: What is your comment on the political activities in the state?
Adeniji: What I can say is that the ruling government is not willing to see eye- to-eye with the opposition, and democracy as people say, allows other views, but here in Osun State, the reverse is the case.
People are not comfortable at all, but because of the fact that the prevailing atmosphere is not such that allows other views to be expressed, people are not happy but they are just stomaching what’s supposed to be rejected completely because everybody is just trying to make sure that he or she gets his or her meal rather than being put in the cell. That is what I can say for now.
Osdf: You are a chieftain of Action Congress (AC) in Ifeland, and Ife is known to be volatile politically. What is the political situation in the area now?
Adeniji: Ife is not really volatile, but people actually misconstrue the way we handle things. The issue is that Ife people would always want to get what belongs to them. They believe that they have to get the appropriate share. Even in the Unity Party of Nigeria (UPN) days, Ife people were not given the appropriate share in the political patronages and, definitely when you feel cheated, you would want to stand up and shout out for your right. That is what people misconstrue when say that Ife is volatile but we are not really volatile.
Osdf: There have been delay in the appeal filed by the governorship candidate of your party Engineer Rauf Aregbesola at the Appeal Court. What do you think is the cause of the delay, and how do you feel about it?
Adeniji: I know for sure, and I am confident that Engr. Rauf Aregbesola, the right choice of the people would INSA-ALLAHU reclaim the mandate given to him soonest. Reason, he came with the symbol of Oranmiyan, and if you go down the memory lane, Oranmiyan in the history always excelled. You remember the history that when there was trouble in Benin Empire in those days, the people of Benin came down to Ife and requested that somebody should be sent to go and restore sanity and the same thing is what Aregbesola is coming to do in Osun to make life more abundant for the people of the state.
Osdf: You have the opportunity of serving as one of the local government chairmen in Osun State, do you have any regret of serving as one?
Adeniji: My God! I don’t have any regret. I am happy to rule to the best of my ability, in the sense that what was made available for me in terms of allocation from the federation account and today, I am enjoying it. I enjoy the accolades, the encomium each time I pass through the streets of Ife and that is even much more than monetary competition. So, I have no reason whatsoever to regret. I am satisfied and happy that I serve the people, and people were also happy and still happy with me.
Osdf: What are the chances of AC in Ife as at today?
Adeniji: The Action Congress (AC), a noble party, the only party that is tackling the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) is very strong in Ifeland generally in the sense that, though people are complaining that they did not allow them to vote or have the actual result of their votes, the party is widely accepted by the people of Ife. If the so-called electoral reform exercise will actually come to reality as generally emphasized by President Umar Yar’Adua-led government, definitely, the whole world will know that Ife does not belong to the conservatives but to the progressives from time immemorial. If they had allowed the Option A4 through which I was elected into office, there would be no room for the PDP thugs to be carrying guns around to attack the people and snatch ballot boxes and papers. So, we pray that the so-called electoral reform will work out, so that the people would know which party is more popular and who is popular among the candidates.
Osdf: What is your future political aspiration?
Adeniji: Me? Allah Akbar! By the time I contested for political office, I just found myself as a youth, full of youthful exuberance which was pushing me and it was God Almighty Allah that guided me to soil through and performed to the satisfaction of my people in the council area. But this time around, I think I should rest.
Osdf: How would you describe Aregbesola?
Adeniji: Aregbesola is a visionary leader who has the intention of changing Osun State for better. To capture it all, Aregbesola is a God- sent, and I am very sure that in no distant time, he would reclaim his stolen mandate and the people of Osun would enjoy from it.
As for me before, during Ramadan, and after, I pray specially for him and for the retrieval of his stolen mandate, our collective mandate and I am sure that the prayer would come to pass.
Osdf: What is your candid appraisal of the controversial Governor Olagunsoye Oyinlola?
Adeniyi: You see, when you are coming on board to contest for a position, you must have a focus of serving the people, but as for Oyinlola, he has no other focus than to squander our money and I can say his case is a sorry case because he has done nothing tangible.
Osdf: Your advice to the people of Osun State generally, and the people of your area in particular?
Adeniji: The people of Osun should not panic, their stolen mandate would soon be retrieved and a new dawn will come. Also, the people of Ife should be rest assured that our victory is very close to us. What I will tell them is that they should remain steadfast and prayerful. They should not relent in their prayer because with prayer, all things are possible.