Governor Christopher Adebayo Alao-Akala of Oyo State is a ‘special’ Chief Executive in Nigeria indeed. Akala is ‘special’ in many ways! He is very unique when it comes to Governors who want to turn their natural black skin to white using bleaching chemicals to achieve this objective. Akala is also ‘special’ among his peers because he looks every inch like an over-fed ancient ‘Oba’ or a royal father who believed before civilisation in a dead god whom he must appease with a goat or a chicken regularly in order to spare his kingdom and his kingship.
If we remember how and why the pop music icon, Michael Jackson, died then we are sorry for Akala and his cosmetic body. How, well before his celebrated demise, he became ‘whiter’ than the average whiteman — all in vain search for something unnatural — it becomes imperative appreciating the dangers inherent in bleaching one’s God-given skin. I have never seen or heard of any white man who was desperate to become ‘black’ or who underwent a plastic surgery in order to undo what the Creator put in place in His majestic wisdom!
Besides, Gov. Akala is about the only Governor in Nigeria whose love of chains and bangles cannot be ignored. ‘Shining’ always like the ex-dictator Ibrahim Babangida (who was known to have used chemicals also to ‘polish’ his physical features) Akala always appears publicly wearing gold wristwatch, gold-plated chains and bangles. Sometimes he reminds one of the ‘bleaching’ Congo-born France-based international popular musician Kofi Olomide whose attires and ornaments attract instant recognition wherever he goes.
I remember watching the superstar put up a great concert in “Le Zenith” in Paris France few years ago; his dancers were wonderfully comparable to those dancing for the Positive Force band led by the Nigerian Femi Kuti, the son of the late ‘Abami Eda’ Fela Kuti. They held people spell-bound with their masterful display of erotical dance-steps, jiggling their bodies in perfect response to the melody. I had equally watched Femi perform wonders with Youssou N’dour of Senegal in Abidjan’s Hotel Ivoire theater many years ago.
One does not know how Alao-Akala as Governor is expecting his subjects to behave as regards the danger inherent in bleaching the skin and turning a God-given skin from black to white or ‘yellow’. Again when the youths look at him wearing expensive watch, necklace and bangles they may be thinking that their governor is a rich ‘superstar’ comparable to Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger (of ‘Commando’ fame) or 50 Cent, the American rapping megastar!
Profiling Governor Adebayo Alao-Akala is a hard task indeed. It is hard in the sense that the man represents many things embedded in one. Profiling him accurately is akin to profiling the ‘modern’ Babylonian King Nebuchadnezzar or the notorious porn megastar, the Italy-born America-based Rocco Siffredi. Akala is to Oyo what Siffredi is to the porn industry world-wide! Like the King Nebu of old (whom God banished to the jungle to eat grass like animals) he is the ‘king’ of the jungle in Ibadan!
Like Governor Gbenga Daniel of Ogun State Alao-Akala is a PDP Governor in a Yoruba region of Nigeria where the opposition has reclaimed the states (Ondo, Ekiti, Osun) the ruling party had ‘won’ through organized electoral fraud! Like Gov. Daniel, an executive ‘marabout’ who derives joy in administering fetish oaths on his aides, sometimes in nude circumstances, Gov. Akala’s marabouts could be found in Ogbomosho, his hometown, where they work diabolically for his spiritual well-being and political success!
Unlike Gbenga Daniel however (a notorious governor who wanted to rule Ogun State unchallenged as a monarch) Akala is working in harmony with the state house of assembly having compromised and cowed them. Gov. Daniel has since made it impossible for the state assembly to do its constitutionally-guaranteed oversight functions by manipulating and creating confusion that is still evident today. It is democratically antithetical for a minority to seek to command a majority! If in any doubt then ask the ‘Kongi’!
Barely-educated or should I say a “semi-illiterate” (apology to Mr Sam Omatseye, the award-winning “The Nation” columnist) Adebayo Alao-Akala is a ‘big man’ with big dreams: he wants to continue beyond next year for another 4 years as Governor but that aspiration is left for the Oyo voters to decide upon. That Akala has failed as governor is an under statement. As a good student of ‘Amala’ politics Akala has become a monster Oyo people do not need either now or in the future.
Remember how this ‘glamorous’ Governor with fashion sense got into office as chief executive of Oyo State? When the late demon of Molete Lamidi Adedibu decided as the ‘strong man’ of Oyo politics to remove by force ex-Governor Rashidi Ladoja he employed both the state assembly and the ‘agberos’ to realise his wish. Akala, then deputy governor to the impeached Ladoja, was installed as the substantive governor, much to his delight.
Though he helped Ladoja to power Adedibu positioned Akala as Deputy Governor so that in any event that the former ‘misbehaved’ the latter would succeed him. The late ‘garrison commander’ in Ibadan once boasted before death humbled him out of existence to the great beyond (where in all probability he must have disputed the godfather position in the Hades with the likes of Sani Abacha, Mobutu and Bokassa) that his ‘godson’ Akala generously paid him monthly ‘security votes’ to be able to maintain the horde of thugs and thieves that came to his house to eat and take orders to kill or maim opponents.
Alao-Akala has learnt a whole lot from this old ugly thug resting in hell! After he died (to the relief of many a Nigerian) Akala was thought to have been ‘finished’ politically by the demise of his godfather who meant everything to him. Alas he has held his own using brute force and ‘settlement syndrome’ –a la IBB — to overcome any challenge. As a strategy towards his re-election bid Akala has proscribed the NURTW in Oyo state leading to two factions emerging and brawling. The two factions, one loyal to him led by one ‘Eleweomo’ and the other led by the leader recognised by the law, ‘Tokyo’. Akala is using the police to
back his faction intimidating and killing members of the ‘Tokyo’ group during repeated clashes.
As the ‘godfather’ of thugs in Oyo state Akala is a rogue Governor! And like Gov. Ikedi Ohakim of Imo State and Gbenga Daniel he is terribly corrupt. He squanders the state resources on frivolous things and uses gifts (like car, rice and cow) as bribe to placate the growing opposition. It must be added here for purposes of emphasis that some of those he had tried to ‘bribe’ with the ‘Greek gifts’ had turned them down.
Gov. Alao-Akala is busy arming and sponsoring thugs with the aim of using them to once again rig the gubernatorial poll of next year. With Prof. Jega in charge in INEC however we wait to see how this is going to happen. But meanwhile we urge eternal vigilance to the Oyo people even though we know that in a free and fair election in Oyo state Akala will be soundly beaten. The ‘Amala’ politics era is gone for good!
It would be recalled that the governor was a former policeman who left active service in controversial circumstances before becoming a ‘politician’ by accident. A hard look at Adebayo Alao-Akala reveals an ‘owambe’ governor in love with the good life, a man who does not have time for any hard thinking or innovative thoughts. He is a party man: ‘chop I chop God no go vex’! An executive reveler like him does not have the strategic answers to the problems of the Oyo people.
His recent public altercation on the pages of national newspapers with Asiwaju Bola Tinubu demonstrated how not to be a governor of a frontline state like Oyo. In the early 90’s as a teenaged student doing my higher education in Benin City I was invited over to the city of Ilorin by a pastor to attend the dusk-to-dawn crusade by the great international German e
vangelist Rev. Reinhard Bonnke. As I left Benin city for Ilorin (the venue of the crusade been a stadium off Ibrahim Taiwo Road) we passed through Ibadan and one could behold a great sprawling city. I was very impressed with the sights and sounds of the city especially the Cocoa House. But today things seemed to have fallen apart.
Few months ago the opposition in the state led by Senator Lekan Balogun had planned to organize a rally in Ogbomosho. But on the D-day Akala sent his armed thugs to go waylay the organizers as they were coming to town from Lagos. If not for their vigilance many people would have been killed; their supporters returned fire as they were fired upon and the hoodlums sent by the governor took to their heels.
Is Gov. Alao-Akala ‘cursed’ by the late Lamidi Adedibu? One may not answer correctly such question given its spiritual dimension but since Adedibu himself was ‘cursed’ before his death by the Almighty God of Abraham and Moses the likelihood is there that the ‘sins’ of the late godfather is being ‘visited’ on his godson!
Yet it goes without saying that the manner the Ogbomosho man goes about the business of misgoverning Oyo state may indicate certain absence of mind. The Nigerian ‘democracy’ must be hailed for accommodating such characters even when we had thought that the Barkin Zuwo syndrome has been put behind us. The Oyo electorate can do next year without an ‘Akara’ nay Akala in the Government House.