Oyebanji, Ekiti: Alake, Ojudu, Fayemi And Even Oga Niyi Adebayo Is He Staying 24 hours in iyin?-Jide Awe

By Gbenga Sodeinde

Prior to the emergence of Alhaji Ganduje as the National chairman of the All Progressives Congress APC which did not go down well with some members of the party, to the Ministerial nomination of Dele Alake whom many Ekiti people consider as a Lagos boy and finally to the recent clash of some APC members in Efon Alaaye where many sustained various degrees of injuries, former APC Chairman and the current political advisor to the Governor of Ekiti state Abiodun Abayomi Oyebanji High Chief Jide Awe hosted THISDAY correspondent, Gbenga Sodeinde in this explosive interview excerpts :

(First published in THISDAY, August 17, Thursday, 2023.)

Question: Let’s meet you sir?
Answer :Yes, I am Chief Olajide Awe the former Chairman of AC, ACN, and APC in Ekiti State and currently the Political Adviser to the Governor of Ekiti state. As a former Chairman of APC in Ekiti state for at least two terms what is your take on the choice of Ganduje as the National Chairman of the Party bearing in mind the negativities on his person?

Answer: Well, the position of National chairman of the party depends on zoning position of the APC because of the dividends of Democracy and how to capture more votes. If the National Chairman of the party is now zoned to the Northwest especially Ganduje where he just served as a two term Governor of Kano state and as a first state Politician.

We believe he has the wealth of experience to move the party forward I believe he is going to solidify the party’s grip on the Nation during the build up to the presidential elections he did well for our Candidate who is now the President of this country not only in the Northwest but across the nation.

The believe is that Ganduje will bring to bare the wealth of experience as Governor of a state like Kano and as a party stalwart who will work closely with President Bola Ahmed Tinubu to move the party forward. Ganduje is well known, he is not a dark horse so his choice as Chairman will no doubt strengthen the party.

Question:But some section in the APC are against his person

Answer:Yes some people may not be comfortable with his choice but when you look at the aggregate of the people that are against his candidacy they are not as much as the numerous people across the nation who are notable stalwarts of the party so such is expected.

What the party is trying to avoid is the issue that happened during the Primary of the party so we need a man that will not be biased, we need somebody who is solid we need somebody who has done it successfully somewhere so if some people are saying otherwise you can’t but find that in Democracy and that is why we say Majority carries the vote. So I believe in his ability to perform creditably well, I believe in his sagacity and administrative skills and his competence to lead our party.

Question:What are the areas you will want him to improve on?

Answer :I will want him to instill the confidence in the administration of the party, he has to rally round all the state chairmen and executives of the party to be able have the belief that if a list is sent to the National Secretariat it will get there and it will be treated as it should. The National Secretariat of our party needs overhauling so I know this time around he will focus on administrative of the party and will be able to block all the loop holes the former administration created.

Question: Correct me if I am wrong sir, you serve more than two tenures as the Ekiti APC chairman

Answer: (Cuts in) Twelve years, I started from 2006 and to God be the glory successfully we handed over the baton 2018

Question: The essence of Democracy we believe are the dividends

(Laughs) not that alone but let have your Question

Question: The recent Ministerial list sent to the Senate by Mr. President has raised quite a dust in Ekiti. Very many people are opposed to Dele Alake because they feel and the people said he is not connected to Ekiti people and that he is more of a Lagos Boy, your take on this sir?

Answer:You know the greatest players in the field of soccer are the spectators,(Laughs) they even teach where the ball should go, they are not on the filed and likewise in the field of politics many people don’t even know what goes on there Dele Alake contested or wanted to contest for Ekiti Senatorial seat 2011…

(Interviewer cuts in) He contested the Primary
Yes but he didn’t win then if Dele Alake has no right to contest in Ekiti then, I think the same yardstick they should be used to judge him. I want to say Dele Alake is flesh, blood of Ekiti and whatever that makes him a full fledge Ekiti man and we are proud of him.

Question: what very many people are saying is A:that he is not close to the grassroots in Ekiti and it will be difficult to relate with him.

Answer: Closing to grass roots what do they mean? You see Dele Alake was a commissioner in Lagos and the right hand man to the President, I can’t be talking about the number of Ekiti people working for him or people he helps and give money to for the past fifteen, twenty years who are indigenes of Ekiti state even in his home town he has been doing marvelously well. If you say somebody is not close to the grassroots were are the grass and where is the root?(Laughs) those who are even playing politics here at the first stage are they staying here? the same Dele Alake, Ojudu, Fayemi and even Oga Niyi Adebayo is he staying 24 hours in iyin? No, because some of our interest doesn’t exist in Ekiti you have to go out and pluck those good fruits.

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If all of us should be staying here twenty four hours what will we be doing? Politics doesn’t entails that 24 hours you should be at the base because even at the root of the grass you need to satisfy it and water it, nurture it before it grows, so if somebody has gone out to look for what to nurture the root of the grass does that remove him from the grassroots?

Absolutely no so as it applies to Ganduje that maybe he is not a grassroot man so also the same applies to Dele Alake he is our son and if any position that is meant for Ekiti is given to him I don’t think anybody should raise eyebrows and I pray he is successful and he too will be listening to the accusations now so he will come and be close.

Question: OK sir, let’s come back home a bit, it seems the Governor of Ekiti state Abiodun Abayomi Oyebanji is receiving accolades across the length and breath of the state even from the opposition what is the magic?

There is nothing like magic, Governor Abiodun Abayomi Oyebanji has been in the system for the past fourteen years serving one government or the other served with Niyi Adebayo, served with Fayemi first and second term so he is not a dullard very sound academically, intellectually he is first rate if he is performing now having seen Adebayo, working with Fayemi even Segun Oni and even fayose because he has been seeing fayose from a distance so an intelligent person will combine all these wealth of experience adequacies and inadequacies of these people and fashion out his own style and that is what our governor is doing. So its not that he has one magic that is different entirely.

Question: Now that those that should be criticizing him are now praising him, don’t you think that is dangerous for him?

Answer: He will not be carried away by that euphoria. A state man will know when the drum is loud and when its getting quite so he will be able to adjust no politician should be carried away by the loud noise of his followers but the ability to get in between will make you a state man.

Question: The local government election is around the corner and it seems the opposition already gave up is it safe to say its going to be an east ride for your party?

Ah, don’t take oppositions silence as inaction that might be a tactics towards us we too are watching but the greatest part of this lies with the SIEC, they are the umpire the field is open to all the 40 or the whatever number of parties that will be participating in the local government elections which is still in October.

Questions: What are the expectations from BAO-led government after the inauguration of the new commissioner, and Special Advisers?

Answer: Robust administration, listening more to the people. No the federal government has just released palliatives and we are planning as much as possible for those relief materials to go by to the real people that it was meant for . We could also realized that, within the last few days, the state government has done a lot . Payment of age long outstanding salaries and allowances to the workers, particularly those in the health sector. All these have been taken care of minimally and I think by the time the government take full swing on some of the areas it will be better for us

Question: Government reaction to the Efon APC crisis.

Answer: Like I said the last time, what started like a beer parlour drama has escalated into a full swing issue that could destabilize a hitherto quiet community like Efon. But the reason for government and leadership is to solve crisis. We have gone into the place, we now realized that agitation has already commenced in the town, there is no doubt about that towards the forthcoming local government election.

But what we are saying is that, it should not be done in such a way that as to affect the peace of that that community. On the instruction of Mr Governor, we have visited the place twice , talked to our people. Frown nerves have been calmed down and I think within a very short time, all these things will become things of the past.

The State Independent Electoral Commission (SIEC) saddled with the responsibility of conducting the local government election, has not even given us instruction but you see overzealousness atimes could degenerate to a state of anarchy and that is exactly what we are against. We don’t want anything that could thinker with the peaceful atmosphere in Ekiti state. So ideas have been exchanged and the issue resolved minimally.

Alleged involvement of Rt Hon. Dapo Karounwi and his non inauguration as Commissioner-Designate .

If somebody is alleged he has to proof beyond reasonable doubt . The allegation was made against Karounwi that he was involved in that matter. One of the ways to ameliorate crisis or to reduce tension is to hold on, ceremony could be done at anytime, swearing in of an individual can be held in government lodge even in government office anytime rather than to do something that will ignite further the already ignited situation.

Answer: I think the governor has done wisely by not inaugurating Karounwi as commissioner on that day and that is not the end to it, his own swearing in could come up at anytime when we realized that both sides of the issue have been thoroughly examined and we proffer solution that will not allow it to degenerate to another community.

Q: Thank you very much sir
A:You are welcome.

Credit: Gbenga Sodeinde@THISDAY

One thought on “Oyebanji, Ekiti: Alake, Ojudu, Fayemi And Even Oga Niyi Adebayo Is He Staying 24 hours in iyin?-Jide Awe

  1. Kudos!

    Brilliant answers from the brilliant Emeritus Chairman and Special Adviser, Political to the Governor!

    May God bless the Interviewee and the Interviewer.

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