Aregbesola, The Gardener, Will Be There A Lifetime

By Rasheed Mabayoje

Let us take the scenario to be a large garden of our world which is put in the trust of ‘Mr. X’.
As the clock winds down on his incumbency, some of ‘THEM’ make such noises as: “He is not cutting the grasses well”; “We have a fantastic mower to keep the lawns”, they criticise.

Amongst them are those who, earlier, had sharper cutlasses and equipment to do the job when the garden was kept in their care. But they failed, and are shameless about it. Even new ones from within also join them in the gibberish discourse.

During their reign, they cut our grasses wet, thus resulting in an uneven cut. They lack a common knowledge that wet clippings can clog the mower; and that dumping clumps of grass on our lawn will smother the grass and result in brown spots, thereby destroying our garden!

Yes, truly, they are lawn-cutters. They had all the opportunities to buy great cutlasses and mowers, but they couldn’t keep our garden!
They couldn’t come close to being a gardener, apparently because they don’t have the knowledge of how to keep a garden. They were never a gardener. That is why they struggle today for relevance, as they have been forgotten. There is no memory to house a cutter as there is for a gardener.

The lawn-cutter might just as well not have been there at all; the gardener will be there a lifetime.
The above analogy is a dog-whistle, my crafted-wink meant for the deep. In my native language- Yòrùbá- it is called Ìlù-àgídìgbo, that is ‘the àgídìgbo beat’. For you to make the right dance-steps, you must have the right knowledge to decipher the message.

Now let me break it down for us to take the right ‘dance-steps’ that would lead us to the appreciation of the foregoing.
Kids in the photos attached to this piece represent the more than 254,000 elementary pupils within grade 1-4 in Osun public elementary schools who enjoy mid-day meals served them daily under the Osun Elementary School Feeding and Health Programme. The initiative, which has been adopted by governments – state and federal, have been running since 2012 under
Mr Rauf Aregbesola.

The main gist here is that in another 10 to 15 years, the kids would have become young adults in tertiary schools. And in about two decades from now, they would have become quite independent- full adults who would have grown up to personally and properly place the character of the man that was behind the free meals they enjoyed in school during their childhood.

When Awolowo was initiating the various legacies that people continue to remember him for today, beneficiaries then were of little consciousness of the essences, simply because they were just growing up. The young beneficiaries of the time are the quite old people today who in various discourses often invoke Awolowo’s great vision.

The importance of the above is that regardless of the mindset and deliberate negative practices of cynics and hatters of Aregbesola, the over 250,000 happy Osun children who eat egg, chicken, beef, beans, bread, rice, cocoyam, yam-porridge, vegetable soup, melon soup, banana, orange, tangerine, pawpaw, etc as contents of the weekly menu they are served, will remember that somebody came during their time and put nutritious food on their tables.

They will reverberate the true narratives: ‘a particular man ensured that our share of monies entrusted to his care was made available to us in terms of the nutritious food we ate daily as pupils’.

No matter how Aregbesola haters, both from within and without, toil to distort true narratives of Aregbesola’s legacies, the history that is being constructed in these 254,000 future parents can never be told falsely. They will tell their children and probably their children’s children about O-meals under Ògbéni Aregbesola.
Throw a cat, bounce a cat, the mew seizes not to echo.
Èyin l’ókù k’ée múra…

PHOTONEWS: Gov Aregbesola, Folorunsho Alakija Commissions UNIOSUN Access Road

The Governor of the State of Osun, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola was today joined by the Chancellor of the Osun State University, Mrs Folorunsho Alakija, at the formal opening of the new UNIOSUN access road.

See photos below :









Osun Govt Recalls Five Sacked OSCOED Workers

The State Government of Osun has reinstated five officials of the Osun State College of Education, Ila Orangun, who were disengaged from the institution in 2015.

Prof Isaac Oyewole, the Provost of the institution made the announcement on Saturday through a statement released by the Public Relations Officer of the school, Mr. Niyi Kolawole.

The provost lauded the state government, particularly the governor for his gesture and called on the reinstated workers to reciprocate the love shown them by being more dedicated to their duties.

According to the statement, “The Provost of the Osun State College of Education, Ila Orangun, Prof. Isaac Oyewole, has lauded the government of Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola for magnanimously reinstating five officials of the institution earlier disengaged by the college.

The Governor’s Mother, By Abiodun Komolafe

“Life levels all men. Death reveals the eminent.”

– George Bernard Shaw


Rauf Aregbesola must be an extremely sad man, feeling empty and alone, as we speak. This is because, in a spate of two weeks, the governor of the State of Osun has lost two particularly dear friends to the cold fangs of death. First to answer the final call was Olu Abiola, a foremost industrialist, socialite and philanthropist who was not only “an invaluable asset in the business world”, but also “gave his all to the cause of” Aregbesola’s administration. Abiola gave up the ghost on July 16, 2017 and the world mourned the passing of a patriot! Two weeks after, precisely, on Tuesday, August 1, 2017, the matriarch of the Aregbesola family in Ilesa, and the governor’s mother, Alhaja Saratu Aregbesola, also exited this sad, sick and insane world of war and the vagaries of its sinfulness. Rauf lost her beloved mother and a chapter in the history of his events-filled life came to a close.


Though grieving is a natural reaction to a loss, the solace in these two sad events is that both grew relatively old before accessing the hereafter. Like Abiola, Iya Olobi, as she was fondly called, will be sorely missed by the governor. Just recently, the governor informed a stunned audience that he has three homes in Osun State. First is Government House at Oke Fia in Osogbo, his official residence. Second is her mother’s, in Ilaje, Ilesa. And third is Abiola’s house in Oke Omiru, also in Ilesa. Now,  two of  these ‘homes’ are bereaved and one can imagine the gravity of the governor’s grief.


As we all know, being a governor’s mother, especially, in this part of the world carries along with it a lot of responsibilities. The ‘challenge’ of that office is so threateningly enormous that, once upon a time in Nigeria, a ‘Mother Excellency’ almost seized control of the powers constitutionally vested in her son as governor of a state. But Aregbesola was with a difference! I doubt if she ever interfered in governance issues in Osun. And it’s not recorded anywhere that she ever used her influence to curry favour anywhere. The present state of the road on which her house in Ilesa is situated bears eloquent testimony to this.


But, what is life that its “meter just keeps a-ticking whether you are getting somewhere or just standing still”? On the other hand, why is death described as “a gift to have more life” and why did Walker Scott see it as “the final awakening”? Of course, that’s why I seriously disagree with Will Rogers that being a hero is more of knowing when to die because “prolonged death has ruined more men than it ever made.” For instance, were Rauf to have a choice between losing his mother now, when the possibility of the state shutting down to accord her a befitting burial is high, and letting her live longer till say, when “the phones no longer ring”, I’m sure he’d have opted for the latter. That goes to explain the importance of parents in a man’s life!


Iya Olobi’s vision of life was remarkable. She trained her children, sometimes, through the seeming endless valleys of travails, to become responsible citizens in the society. She neither wavered nor faltered in nurturing them, sometimes through the physical thistles and the psychological toughness of a journey of life which, in many instances, attempted to dilute her faith. Despite the winding and the wearisome nature of the journey, she did all that’s worth doing  to give her children’s future a meaning.


“Life”, in Marion Howard’s words, “is like a blanket – too short.”  This  “mutual hostility” is also said to be about wars; you win some, you lose some. Sadly, but with total submission to the will of Allah, Iya Olobi has lost the final struggle of life to death! So, rather than grieve over what’s inevitable, the governor and his siblings should reflect and, with hearts full of praise, appreciate God for having such a wonderful mother who has in no small way added value to their lives. More importantly, the governor should be thankful to the Allah for letting his mother see him through success, notably, as an engineer, a ‘chattered politician”, and “an astute administrator with a vision, one blessed with the ability to picture into the fortunes, hopes and desires of a future which best is yet to come for dear state.”


Like mother, like son! Japheth Omojuwa describes him as a “seemingly ordinary man with the proven extraordinary abilities” while Joe Igbokwe sees him as “a repository of trust and confidence among his followers.” Aregbesola has helped a great deal in the transformation of Osun from the shameless sensualities of the Ancient Times and the ruthless ferocity of the Dark Ages into “a developed, cleaner, safer and more beautiful state” that, in another 30 years, Osun will no doubt be a reference point to other states in terms of infrastructure development. His promise of a brighter future has been unsurpassable in the history of the state. Little wonder Aregbesola is one of the most outstanding and credible personalities the Nigerian nation has ever known.


In 1890, Crowfoot on his deathbed famously referred to life as the “flash of a firefly in the night“; “the breath of a buffalo in the wintertime“; and “the little shadow which runs across the grass and loses itself in the sunset.” Without doubt, Iya Olobi’s life brings to memory All Progressives Party (APC), interestingly, a political party co-founded and nurtured into adulthood by his governor-son. Truth be told, APC is fractured in not less than 10 states. Wolves in sheep’s clothing and politicians with no fixed identity are threatening the survival of the party and it seems as if the Father Christmas of our immediate past has lost the essence of his gift. But I believe that this challenge is not insurmountable if only the leadership can learn some salient lessons from the life, travails and the triumph of Rauf’s mother. Her inspiring life and unwavering commitment to excellence have shown that living in questionable submission to the fatal fantasies of life is not always an option.


May Allah grant the soul of the faithful departed Al-Janat!



*KOMOLAFE writes in from Ijebu-Jesa, Osun State ([email protected])



O20, Okenisa Street,

Ijebu-Jesa, Osun State.

PHOTO STORY: Emir of Borgu Visits Governor Aregbesola

Governor State of Osun, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola, and Emir of Borgu, Kingdom
Kanji Niger State, Barrister Muhammad Sani Dantoro, during a courtesy visit
to the Governor, at the Government House Osogbo on Tuesday 25/7/2017.

Governor State of Osun, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola (middle), Emir of Borgu,
Kingdom Kanji Niger State, Barrister Muhammad Sani Dantoro (left), and
Chief of staff to the Governor Osun,  Alhaji Gboyega Oyetola (right),
during a courtesy visit to the Governor at the Government House Osogbo on
Tuesday 25/7/2017.

Governor State of Osun, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola, Presenting the Plague to the
Emir of Borgu, Kingdom Kanji Niger State, Barrister Muhammad Sani
Dantoro, during a courtesy visit to the Governor, at the Government
House Osogbo on Tuesday 25/7/2017.

Governor State of Osun, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola (middle), Emir of Borgu,
Kingdom Kanji Niger State, Barrister Muhammad Sani Dantoro (3rd left),
Chief of staff to the Governor Osun,  Alhaji Gboyega Oyetola (3rd right),
Personal Assistant to the Emir of Borgu, Kingdom, Mr. Mike Nearer, (right),
Deputy chief of staff to the Emir of Borgu, Kingdom Hon. Abdulrasaq
Jikantoro (left), Commissioner for Science, innovation and technology, Hon.
Remi Omowaye (2nd), and Special Adviser to the Governor Osun, Dr. Gbenga
Oyinlola, during a courtesy visit to the Governor, at the Government
House Osogbo on Tuesday 25/7/2017.

Aregbesola Swears In Commissioners, Special Advisers

‎The Governor of Osun, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola on Tuesday swore in his 39 member executive council comprising Commissioners and Special Advisers, thus inaugurating the team that would accompany him in what he called “our home run.”

On the list of the commissioners are an Associate Professor of Economics, Olalekan Dauda Yinusa; a Doctor of Law, Ajibola Basiru and a former Senator, Mudasiru Hussain.

The Governor announced that he as well as his deputy, Iyaafin Grace Titi Laoye-Tomori, were dropping their portfolios in Works and Infrastructure and Education respectively for new entrants into the cabinet to allow for more effective policy coordinations and supervisions.

The Governor at the inauguration at the parking lot of Bola Ige House in Osogbo‎ stated that the inauguration was long overdue, but for dire constraint of funds.

Aregbesola stressed that Osun was not insulated from the financial challenges that the country had during the Peoples Democratic Party-led administration in Nigeria.

He held that Osun was receiving negative monthly allocations from the Federation Account during the period, saying ‎what hit Nigeria during this period was the equivalent of economic natural disaster and Osun was not alone.

According to him, “I congratulate all the appointees for being considered worthy of service to the government and people of our dear state and for scaling the hurdle of screening.

“Many of you served in the first term; the rest are fresh hands. Of course, this is long overdue. It should have come up immediately after my inauguration on November 27, 2014. As you all know, we were hamstrung by dire constraint – principally financial.

“Our second term coincided with the onset of a national economic disaster. The first on account of a purported daily theft of 650,000 barrels of crude oil under the watch of the immediate past PDP national government. This is curious and improbable.

“We must note that 650,000 barrels of crude oil are the equivalent of 65 supertankers each laden with over 300,000 metric tons of crude oil. By the way, a supertanker is about 450 meters long, the equivalent of four and a half football fields.

“Indeed, 27 states and the Federal Government were unable to pay salaries of workers. It might interest us to know that the government of Goodluck Jonathan‎, according to his Finance Minister, Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, had to borrow N476 billion from commercial banks to be able to pay salaries in the last four months of his administration,” Aregbesola told the gathering.

The Governor further stated that his government has responsibilities to three broad categories, the most important of which is the commitment to the generality of the people of the state whose mandate he swore an oath to exercise faithfully.

He also added that state workers whom his administration has a contractual obligation to pay at the end of every month, and the political class who made it possible to campaign, contest and win elections will be carried along in his administration.

‎He said, “What we have done during the special time occasioned by the emergency period we faced was to play a delicate balancing act between the three categories.Painfully, we came to an understanding with the workers on a realistic schedule of payment.

“We also continued with our programs and critical social intervention albeit on a reduced scale. Lastly, we have a good understanding from the political class on the need for them to make a sacrifice as we defer appointments and cabinet formation.

“Our traducers, rather than reasonably comprehend the situation went to town to harp on the non-composition of cabinet but in the process expose their own ignorance.

“They thought by doing this, they would discredit us. However, right thinking people started asking them what business they have got with the formation or non-formation of an APC government cabinet”. The Governor emphasised.

The Governor spiced his one hour plus speech with intermittent musical renditions which enlivened the event.

Speaking on behalf of newly sworn-in cabinet members, the new Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, Dr. Surajudeen Ajibola Bashir, described the delay in the constitution of the cabinet by Mr. Governor as a sign of courage and commitment to good governance. He said  Aregbesola had exhibited high sense of commitment to raise the bar of governance in the last six years of his administration, saying this had reflected in the general well-being of the citizens.

The new Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice said the new cabinet would leave no stone unturned at ensuring unflinching support and cooperation with the present administration in the state.

 Ajibola assured the people of the state of the readiness of the new cabinet to consolidate on the legacies built by Aregbesola-led administration in the last six years.

“With this delay, it shows the courage, commitment, and doggedness of this administration in managing the limited resources.

“Though this would have been done, but with the economic prowess of Mr. Governor in meeting the demands and needs of the people of the state, it was delayed.

“So, the formation of this cabinet shows the commitment and courage of this government despite the economic recession.

“It also shows the doggedness and commitment of the present administration led by Governor Aregbesola to weather the storm.

“But the remaining 18 months to the expiration of this administration is enough to galvanise development.

 “I urge my colleagues to rally round our governor to move the state forward.”

Easter: Aregbesola Urges Nigerians To Keep Hope Alive

The Governor of Osun, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola has charged Nigerians on the need to keep hope alive in-spite of the daunting economic challenges being faced by the country.

He said it is in this that the citizens can be galvanized towards contributing their quota to the overall progress of the country.

This was the summary of the Governor’s message to Nigerians as Christians all over the world celebrate Easter to commemorate the anniversary of the death of Jesus Christ.

The Governor, in the message signed by the Director, Bureau of Communications and Strategy, Office of the Governor, Mr. Semiu Okanlawon urged Christians to reflect on the import of Easter celebrations in their dealings, not only with other Christians, but with people of other religions.

He said Nigerians must eschew bitterness and all forms of violence, stressing that the progress, peace and security of the nation is anchored on good neighbourliness and peaceful co-existence.

The statement reads further, “I urge you all to let the significance of the celebration reflect in our relationship with one another both Christians and the people of other religions. There is no doubt that these are tough times in our country but we must all keep hope alive that life will be better”.

He reminded Christians that having gone through forty days of fasting and praying, Easter was a better time for them to purge themselves of those weights that “have impeded our progress as a people over the years by demonstrating love in its fullness not only to one another but also to our society.

“The major lesson of Easter is for us as Christians, to reconsider the reality of our faith. The passion and death of Jesus underscores the love of the Father who gave his only begotten son in love for us and the willingness of the Son to sacrifice himself for others to be liberated from the weight of sin.

Aregbesola however reiterated the commitment of his administration to making life better for all citizens and residents, saying that“This is our primary concern as reflected in the numbers and quality of projects being executed across the State and the committment to the welfare of our people‎.”

Aregbesola May Announce LG Caretaker Committee Next Week

Following unforeseen circumstances that befalled the issue of appointing the administrative heads of the local government in Osun state, the State House of Assembly is set to announce the list of the caretaker committee for the 61 Local Government and Area Councils of Osun State next week.

Investigations gathered by Omoluabi disclosed that,the House is likely to read Governor Rauf Aregbesola’s letter sent to the Speaker of the Assembly, Hon Najeem Salam on the appointment of the members of the local government caretaker on Monday or Tuesday.

The Governor’s letter was said to have been delivered to the Salam earlier this morning by the Assistant Chief of Staff, Mr Gbenga Akano.

The letter was said to have been written in Aregbesola’s handwriting. It was gathered that Aregbesola, the parliament and the party have resolved all issues responsible for the delay in the appointment of the caretaker committees.

The medium learnt that the names of the six former executive secretaries, Gbenga Ogunkanmi (Ayedire), Alhaji Azeez Akinleye (Isokan), Kehinde Morenikeji (Boripe), Isiaka Faramade (Osogbo)Tajudeen Lawal (Ife-East) and Lanre Balogun (Ilesa-East) who were said to have been returned by the governor are no longer on the list.

Credit: Omoluabi

Governor Aregbesola to Unveil Osogbo City Marathon on Tuesday

The Governor of the State of Osun Rauf Aregbesola is to unveil the maiden edition of the Osogbo City Half Marathon being organised by the state Broadcasting Corporation (OSBC).

According to a statement jointly signed on Monday by Wale Idowu, and Muideen Adeleke, the Chairman and Secretary, respectively, of the organizing committee, the ceremony will hold at the state House of Assembly in Osogbo by 10:00a.m.

It said that the half marathon, to hold on April 15, would promote healthy living among the citizenry as well as promote the spirit of sportsmanship.

The statement added that the marathon would help to rekindle the spirit of walk-to-live (a month trekking exercise of the state government).

“The marathon will go a long way in assisting to keep crime at bay and attract prospective investors to the state,” it said.It urged federal and state lawmakers, corporate organisations and stakeholders in sports promotion and development to assist the state to make the event a success.

Tinubu, Aregbesola, Others Urge Political Scientists To Get Involved In National Development

The Governor of Osun, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola, has said that all hands must be on deck to ensure that democracy offers the best opportunity for governance and nation building.

The Governor, at the 2017 South-West conference of the Nigerian Political Science Association (NPSA) held at the Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile Ife stated that leaders are not just elected to massage their ego or put in a position of dominance over other competitors for power‎, but for power to exercise responsibility for the development of the people.

Aregbesola called on political scientists in the country to be more focused on taking assertive positions on issues of national interest as a means of contributing to national development.

He described politics as a primal activity which any society that wants development and progress must do everything possible to get right.

The Governor who said politics is central to everybody who dwells in a community also charged the political scientists to make their voices heard loud and clear by the leaders of the people.

Speaking further at the conference which has as its theme: “Democracy, Nation-Building and National Development in Nigeria” the governor asserted that political science researches should not just be done for the purpose of gaining promotion alone but should be made to develop the society or else such research is useless.

On the relationship which should exist between the academic environment and the society, he stressed that the major challenge for Nigerian universities is the need to create a mutual relationship with the larger society so that the people can benefit.

The Governor noted that democracy remains the best and offers the best form of governance if supported and backed with the right ingredients especially by the academic environment.

According to the Governor, “Political science research findings should be made public, not just for obtaining promotion and professorial chairs. Any academic discipline must be relevant and responsible to the society.

“In the developed world, progress comes from application of knowledge in science and technology, administration and other academic disciplines.

“You should also find a way for robust intercourse between town and gown. Political scientists should get more involved in politics and administration in order to enrich their knowledge base. Sound theory added to sound practice equals sound knowledge.

“On the other hand, well-practised politicians should be appointed as faculties in political science departments to be able to share their experience through teaching, research, seminars and publications”.

In his remarks, the National leader of the All Progressive Congress (APC), Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, said a nation that desires progress must have a visionary leader and can translate such vision into concrete achievement.

Asiwaju, who was represented by Professor Adebayo Williams, argued that a leader, who has no objective, could not be a strategic leader.

He lamented that majority of political leaders focused more on how to get power and control government rather than what they can do with power to transform human lives.

He advised politicians to focus more on the development of the country and the promotion of well-being of the people of the country.

“A leader of the people must have a coherent vision in his mind and work assiduously to translate it in concrete things.

“There can’t be strategic leadership where conscious objective is lacking. Conscious objective and coherent vision are some of the ingredients of nation-building.

“Most often time, leadership here is short-sighted, focusing more on power and control of power and government rather than on result-oriented programmes,” Tinubu said.‎

In his lecture entitled: “Democracy, Nation-building and Development in Nigeria,” the keynote speaker,who is a former Vice Chancellor of Ekiti State University, Professor Dipo Kolawole, said Nigeria has been suffering from poor leadership since independence.

Prof. Kolawole argued that democracy will end in failure if there are no proper instrument monitoring and evaluation.

He averred that democracy still remains the best form of government anywhere it is being practised in the word, but advised that politics of it must be played according to the laid down rules for there to be peace, progress and development.

“Leadership has been the problem of this country since independence. We have been suffering from underdevelopment of leadership.

“There is no gainsaying the fact that democracy still remains the best form of government.

“But it cannot be left alone on its own without the proper instrument of monitoring and evaluation. And unless this is done, there is bound to be chaos and anarchy,” the university don said.

Governor Rauf Aregbesola’s Birthday Wish To Acting President Osinbajo

Today 8th March 2017, Governor Rafu Aregbesola sent birthday wishes to the acting president Professor Yemi Osinbajo. In his tweet Governor Aregbesola said “On this occasion of your birthday, I join you and your loved ones in celebrating the abundant grace of God on your life. Many happy returns”.

The Acting President replied all the well wishes from colleagues, family and friends on his twitter  page together with a video that showed his wife, a pianist and himself singing.

He also tweeted saying  “Thank you everyone, for your kind words, I am humbled. I am grateful to God for 60 years. There is no me without Him. Saved by Grace alone”.