Significantly this year 2019, the people of Oyo State will go to the polls to elect another Governor who will rule the state for another four years (2019-2023). With the forgoing narrative, let’s quickly delve into the historical antecedent of Oyo state politics from 1999 till date. When the democratic dispensation era was returned in the year 1999, the Alliance for Democracy candidate, Alhaji Lamidi Adesina won the Governorship election and he moved into the Agodi Governor’s House. However, Lam Adeshina’s effort to return for second term in 2003 was an exercise in futility.
Moving further, Senator Rashidi Adewolu Ladoja won the 2003 election but few years into his regime things fell apart between him and his godfather and the centre couldn’t hold him, he was impeached and invariably, Alao Akala, his deputy replaced him. In 2007 Alao Akala won the election.
In 2011, the incumbent governor couldn’t defeat the joint forces which presented Senator Abiola Ajimobi and in 2015, Governor Ajimobi broke the record by becoming the first governor in Oyo state to be re-elected back to back, this singular feat earned him a name attributed to him as “kò ṣèlérí” (meaning, it has never happened).
Now that the 2-term tenure of Gov. Abiola Ajimobi is gradually winding up, what cannot happen now is “a third term”. Hence, there’s a need for a fresh head to become the next governor of Oyo state. There are many political warriors who have expressed their interest to become the next governor but among these candidates are the five favorite contenders.
One of which is the anointed candidate of the governor, Chief Adebayo Adelabu, He’s the APC candidate. He was former deputy governor of the Central bank. The question on everyone lips is – Will the Powers of the ruling Government he’s currently riding on take him to the state house?
Another candidate is Seyi Makinde, He is to contest under the platform of People’s Democratic Party, the opposition party, He contested in 2015 under SDP and now he has returned with strength to win the election. The yet unanswered question is – will Oluseyi Makinde be fortunate this time around? Only Time will tell.
In another interesting situation, The enigmatic return of Otunba Alao Akala under the African Democratic Party (ADP) after his journey from PDP to APC was unproductive has raised so much dust, He appears to have found comfort in ADP and he is hoping to return to the governor’s office after eight years of long vacation. Will the Golden lavish son from Ogbomoso return to his so called rightful seat? Fingers crossed.
The anointed son of the Former governor, Chief Rashidi Ladoja who moved from PDP to Accord Party, back to PDP then moved to ADC and now in ZLP, Sharafadeen Abiodun Alli on the platform on Zenith Labour Party is among the contenders. Will the godfather strength of Ladoja win the election for Sharafadeen Alli?
Last on the top five contenders is the candidate of the ADC, Sen. Olufemi Lanlehin. He’s a strong politician with huge followers. Is Olufemi Lanlehin strong enough to win the governorship race?
March 2nd 2019, which is the day for governorship election is going to be a very interesting day to watch out for, the sky is cloudy and awaiting to fall the rain of victory on whoever emerges the next governor of the pace setter state. They have presented their blueprints, the ball is in the court of the people of Oyo state to choose wisely among these candidates.
Among the outstanding stars, it’s only one that will shine brighter. The question which nobody can answer now is, who the brightest star going to be. Fingers crossed as all roads loads to the Oyo state Governorship election race.
Kunle Sotibi writes from the University of Ibadan.