Re – Averting bloodshed in Osun

Festus Adedayo did not disappoint in his ‘Flickers’ column in the Tribune on Sunday entitled ‘The averted bloodshed in Osun’. Dr Adedayo went full blast in his characteristic style – a collection outright lies, inverted logic and seething hatred, brewed and served in the foulest and most intemperate language.

The summary of his argument is that if the Minister of Interior, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola, had honoured the invitation to attend a public lecture on the 10th anniversary of his wresting power from the PDP in Osun, there would have been bloodshed; that he rescinded his decision based on the gratuitous counsel of the former governor of the state, Olagunsoye Oyinlola, whom he defeated to become the governor on November 27, 2010; and that Oyinlola is being vilified, instead of being commended for this selfless and patriotic act.

He began his piece with a short analysis of the recent godfather-godson imbroglio in the polity. It is a clever sleight of hand to evoke the memory of the recent spat between former APC chairman, Adams Oshiomhole and Governor Godwin Obaseki in Edo in which the former got worsted. He exploited this sentiment by casting Governor Gboyega Oyetola in the mould of the underdog godson who is under the siege of his overbearing godfather. The idea is to portray Aregbesola as an overbearing godfather and set him up for roasting in the court of public opinion.

This portrayal of Aregbesola as a godfather is deliberately false and misleading. Governor Oyetola is not Aregbesola’s godson by any stretch of the imagination. Indeed, he will feel insulted to be so categorised. The relationship between them in the eight years they served together was of mutual respect, though Aregbesola indisputably was the governor and chief executive.

Any player in the Aregbesola’s administration or even Oyetola’s current administration will attest to this. Though there were members of cabinet that would fit the bill of a godson to Aregbesola then – and now – but certainly Oyetola was (and is) not one of them. If Governor Oyetola has any godfather at all, it should be Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, who is the overall head of their political tendency.

When Dr Adedayo wrote that he has interest in Osun, I was hoping he would mention family members, relations, property or investments. But this ‘interest’ was the fact that he lived in Osun in the 1970s and this makes him more concerned than indigenes and residents of Osun who for seven and a half years, were practically put under siege by his client.

Last week, I noticed the revival of what I called ‘PDP machine’. This machine includes, but not limited to, a coterie of 2012 pensioners in the state, led by Baba Omoniyi Ilesanmi; fictive report by an adversarial section of the local correspondents: and a rash of hack writers circulating the same line of attacks against Aregbesola from a dossier handed to them.

This haunch has now been confirmed with Dr Adedayo’s piece pretending to be backing Governor Oyetola against Ogbeni Aregbesola. This machine used to be deployed anytime there was election in the state or Aregbesola was riding high or being honoured for an achievement. They act as subtle pressure on the electorate by trying to poison their mind against APC or impose a narrative of suffering in the state, for which APC deserves no victory at the polls or that Aregbesola should not be celebrated. Not that they ever succeeded.

But the question now is: since there is no election at present and Aregbesola is no longer the governor, at whose behest are they now acting?  But the answer, as Bob Dylan wrote, is blowing in the wind.

Dr Adedayo’s magisterial assertion that the programme was suspended because of Oyinlola’s chastisement is laughable and he will now be held in derision in the circles of those who know the how and why and were instrumental to the suspension.

Oyinlola’s advice, as I wrote earlier, is gratuitous and he could not have meant well. It was not meant to heal or bring peace to the state. Indeed, all the outsiders pretending to be siding with the state governor are doing so for a purpose.

They are driving further wedge into the APC because they are waiting to be sure beneficiaries in the hope that APC implodes. So, their support is a Greek gift. After all, when you want to burn down your father’s house, his enemies will be too glad to provide you with petrol and light the matchstick for you. When you see the circling of the vultures, be sure they are waiting for a carcass to fall to the earth for devouring.

It is interesting to note that Adedayo who had deployed the foulest language to attack the candidature of Oyetola, has had a dramatic encounter on the way to Tarsus,and is now waxing lyrical in his support for him against Aregbesola. Could this have been out of sincerity? It’s what Prof Soyinka calls ‘transparent subterfuge’.

Actually, the strategy is topretend to be friends with the governor and then alienate him from his strongest allies; and having isolated him, they can have him for lunch. It is pure Machiavellian. These are elements well versed in the art of war and violence, using guile and deception. So, our columnist could only have been a bit part player in a bigger plot.

Dr Adedayo alleges that if Aregbesola had attended the public lecture, there would have been bloodshed in Osun. He didn’t explain how this would happen i.e. people coming to public lecture with guns, machetes, bombs and other weapons of mass destruction, which are assured to be freely used any time before, during and after the lecture. This is the specious logic that informed Oyinlola’s counsel and on which media narrative of the past one week has been built.

This is the narrative some people want to sustain in order to keep Ogbeni Aregbesola from coming to the state. I don’t know for how long this can be sustained, except you literally banish him from the state.

  • Sola Fasure is the Media Adviser to the Minister of Interior, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola

 

Our columnist is so enamoured of this lecture- to-bloodshed nexus that it became the title of his column.I cannot even begin to contemplate how Festus Adedayo, PhD Political Science, became the avatar of the narrative that a public lecture will irreversibly lead to bloodshed, in a democratic milieu and therefore should not hold.

Oh, but I remember that he now plays in the big league of CNN, Amnesty International, DJ Switch and other practitioners of what the cerebral The Nation columnist, Kunle Abimbola, referred to as ‘e-massacre’ in which you establish through repetition a narrative of massacre in which the number of the victims keeps changing. You don’t need real body evidence, names of victims etc., just keep ramming it down their throat and the public will eventually swallow it and will soon be baying for blood, and then unleash anarchy on the streets.

What I even found more perplexing is Festus Adedayo, PhD Political Science, Brig Olagunsoye Oyinlola, former democratic governor and a section of the media foreswearing debate and public lecture organised by a supposed opponent. How democratic is this idea and how does a PhD Political Science got entangled in this totalitarian intolerance of free speech web?

This is naked intolerance being celebrated by those who should ordinarily be alarmed, being guardians of tolerance. But Karl Popper warned us of the danger of intolerance, that we should be intolerant of the intolerant in order to maintain a tolerant society, or else, tolerance will be destroyed and society along with it.

  • Sola Fasure is the Media Adviser to the Minister of Interior, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola

 

Festus Adedayo, when was the last time you visited Osogbo, the state capital? I beg you, in the name of God, to drive on the Gbongan-Osogbo road and see the pains of what Mr Aregbesola did to us with that road. Nobody knows how many billions he claimed to have spent on the road. What I know is that he left the road worse than he met it. It is not just a death trap, it is a shame. Sir, do not be deceived by the bridge on the expressway at Gbongan. That bridge is a bridge to nowhere. There is no motorable road after the bridge which I call a con-bridge, a scam. Yet the man behind all this wanted to storm our state to celebrate the anniversary of his regime of half salary (Afusa), an era we have forgotten under the current administration that is paying salaries and pensions

  • Bamidele Olamilokun, Fagbesa Road, Osogbo, Osun State

 

We thank you for reminding us of what we suffered in the ignoble past of the Lagos boys, but please, kindly show more interest in our state. The people suffered unimaginable injustice in the hands of Aregbesola who now had the guts to announce that he wanted to celebrate 10 years of his misrule. He offered us that insult because he thought we were too meek and would take any insult no matter how bad. Again, I will appreciate your kind decision to publish this.

  • Rebecca Akinola, Iwo, Osun State

 

Thank you for that article on Osun State and Aregbesola. Sir, I will greatly appreciate it if you can kindly help publish that article on the rift between Governor Gboyega Oyetola and the immediate past governor of the state, Mr Rauf Aregbesola.

Thank you for that beautiful piece on the recent insult hauled at us in Osun State by Aregbesola who wanted to celebrate his 10th anniversary as our governor although he left office two years ago. I prayed for you after reading the piece. My mother, who is a widow and a pensioner, prayed for you too.  Her suffering enjoyed no balm throughout the years of Aregbesola in Osun State.

I found it funny that someone who deliberately made millions of workers and pensioners to suffer while he spent money like rain water now said he wanted to celebrate 10 years of his misrule in our state. That was an insult. I believe he should, instead, be begging God to forgive him for his bad behaviour while in this state.

I read your piece and said God bless this writer who has refused to be bought by those who mindlessly cornered our heritage and ran to Lagos to enjoy while we suffer in Osun State. Oyinlola did well as governor and we loved him for his ways. The Bible says when the righteous rule, the people rejoice. We enjoyed Oyinlola’s humane government. God bless him. The only bad thing he did was joining the APC in 2014 to foist Aregbesola’s second term on us. Imagine him joining his enemies! However, I also join you in endorsing his (Oyinlola’s) recent statement calling for peace while the APC wanted to set our state ablaze. He did well as a prince and a well-bred Omoluabi. Anyone who said he didn’t do that well is an enemy of peace and should be so told.

 

  • Olalekan Famose, Oromu, Ilesa, Osun State

 

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