I was a proud witness and participant in the historic election victory that has now ushered the All People’s Congress (APC) Presidential candidate, Gen (Rtd) Muhammadu Buhari to power on 28 March, 2015, after a very close battle. The important thing in this victory is that it is a victory, first, to Nigerians, who wanted, went for and got the CHANGE they wanted, the election result being a manifestation of the people’s resolve to confront corruption, exploitation and bad governance, and secondly for Democracy, because it is about Nigerians being assured that in their democracy, their votes count unlike before (people used to say, why the heck am I voting anyway, the politicians will always rig and my vote doesn’t mean a damn thing) and that power lay in their hands; the hands of the people.
If the president, or any governor or other public office holders do not do as we want in the next four years, and make life better for us, they will meet us at the Polling Unit and we know we now have the vote/power to get rid of them. This is what I am most happy about. Nigerians, from the grassroots to the top have been empowered; their voice and power are being heard and taken into account. Political leaders should do more. Public servants and political office holders serve us; we don’t serve them. Politicians must not mess with the people anymore. Politicians must not take the people for granted anymore
So coming down to the next set of elections on 11 April 2015, this is the Gubernatorial (Governorship) and States Houses of Assembly, I make bold to predict a win for the APC’s incumbent governor seeking re-election in my state of Oyo.
Before the presidential election, things had looked very dicey and narrow for the incumbent governor, with the race between mainly himself and the Accord Party candidate (a former governor of the state), while it was generally agreed that the candidates of the People’s Democratic Party (a two-term Senator); Labour (another ex-governor of the state, who actually lost out to the incumbent in 2011) and the rookie candidate of the Social Democratic Party (SDP), a young man whose appearance in the political scene is unexplainable and full of wagging tongues.
These are the reasons for my predictions:
- The bandwagon effect of the APC/Buhari win in the Presidential, Senatorial and House of Representatives Elections of 28 March 2015.
- The Oyo State voters want their state to be in the mainstream politics, and not to be in the opposition to the central government, which will now be taken over by the APC.
- The APC won virtually everywhere in the Presidential and National assembly elections and this will also spur on the people to continue voting them in. Their candidates are also capitalising on this heavily, but are not complacent
- The candidate (incumbent governor) has not performed badly anyway, as there are visible evidence of his performance all across the state.
- Several of the incumbent governor’s competitors (Accord and Labour Parties, especially) have corruption and mismanagement baggage that won’t give them advantage over him.
- The incumbent governor has overcome the crisis within his own party unlike his competitors, and has patched up quickly and severally with core members of the party who had initially fallen out with him.
- Members of other parties have started moving to APC as a result of Presidential win by the party’s candidate
- The APC candidate, that is, the incumbent governor, has the support of leaders of thought and traditional institution as exemplified by Olubadan in Council, the Alaafin of Oyo, Aseyin of Iseyin and even the Soun of Ogbomoso, as well as other traditional rulers in the state.
- APC won handsomely in Okeogun area of the state, which was hitherto, difficult for the party to break into. This is a good pointer to the gubernatorial and House of Assembly wins for their candidates.
- Already, there is apathy, despondency and disarray in the camp of other parties, while the APC has garnered and increased in confidence and goodwill.
This is my take for a win for the incumbent governor of Oyo State, Senator Isiaka Ajimobi. I am sure he will break the jinx of that slogan “Ibadan ki sin eniyan le’meji……”. (Ibadan people do not serve the same leader twice), based on performance, sincerity of purpose, achievements and focus.
It is a well-known phenomenon that in Nigeria, governors who secured second terms fall on their oars, and that is even if they have performed creditably, which is very rare. Their second terms are even worse. However, he must be kept on his toes in his second term, as he is wont to be arrogant, selfish at times and ignores good advice from neutral and well-meaning people and is prone to the bad habit of enjoying hearing his own voice. He must also find a way that limit his dependence on the monthly state allocations from the federal government and conscientiously continue to increase the Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) of the state to enable him acquire the funds to further turn the state into a modern and industrial one.
This Ajimobi will break that jinx once and for all. It is about time, anyway.
I thank my dear brother, Tunde Ojumu, (ironically, not an Oyo man, but an Osun man) for his invaluable contribution and very intelligent discourse of this analysis with me.