BY ABIOLA RUFAI & MAYOMIKUN FADIPE
On arrival at the former President Olusegun Obasanjo’s Abeokuta home situated at the Hilltop of Ibara Housing Estate at exactly 10:25am, we were welcomed by the array of security men manning the entrance gate of the beautiful buildings within a compound that could simply be described as a replicate of Aso-Rock aside others who were strategically positioned within and around the former President house.
It will be recalled that the former Nigeria’s President, Chief Olusegun Okikiola Aremu Obasanjo,GCFRplayed host to members of the League of Yewa-Awori Media Practitioner (LOYAMP)s who paid a courtesy visit to the elder statesman at his Hill Top Presidential residence in Abeokuta, Ogun Stateon Thursday August 10, 2017.
Immediately after we were effectively screened by security men at the gate, one of them thereafter led us to a reception hall where we were anxiously waiting for the former President.
However, one notable thing we noticed immediately we entered the compound was that, one could view the entire area view of Abeokuta from Baba’s compound.
Within few minutes of waiting in the reception hall, the former President Obasanjo just came in alongside some of his security men and his other guests.
As we all know him, Chief Obasanjo who did not waste time in attending to whatever he wants to docallon our National Coordinator, who is also the Publisher/EIC of the popular international news magazine “StarTrend”, Elhaji Abu-Satar Hamed who led the group on the visit to open the discussion and as usual Elhadj Hamed started by thanking Baba Obasanjo for the love and interest he has for Ogun West.
He went into memory lane during the time Baba Obasanjo tried without luck to made Prof Afonja, Late Dr. Tunji Otegbeye, Chief Kola Bajomo, Gen Tunji Idowu Olurin (rtd.) among others at one time or the other as the Governors of Ogun State.
The leader of LOYAMP however told Baba Obasanjo that the people of Ogun West have not heard his position on the coming 2019 election as it affects Ogun West.
In his characteristic manner, Baba Obasanjo welcome the group to his havens and said that he was the first person to raise the dust that Igbos from the Eastern part of the country and Yewas from the Western part of Ogun State were being marginalised for not giving the opportunity to assume the position of president and governor respectively.
‘‘I was the first person to pronounced that Yewas and Igbos are being marginalised and surprisingly, the Igbos took action immediately by clamouring to be president and has not stop, while the people of Yewa here in Ogun kept silence. Well, it is good thing that you are now coming out and I’m reassuring you that I will continue to support you because I belief In equity and justice,”Baba OBJ enthused.
The former President stated that, he was taken the position as a result of the marginalisation of the region as the only region out of the four regions that make up the state that has not occupy the number one office in the state since the creation of Ogun State over forty years ago.
He noted that it’s wrong for anyone to say, ‘‘Yewa people don’t have credible people we can trust in Nigeria’’. Would one say Prof. Afonja, Late Dr. Otegbeye, Chief Kola Bajomo, Gen. Olurin and many other indigenes of the region are not people of impeccable characters who are of international repute?’’
‘‘Honestly, I hate injustice and maginalisation, but for equity and justice that I beliefe Ogun West should produce the next governor of Ogun State and upon this I stand until it so.
“Let me reassure you that I am in total support of emergence of Yewaman becoming the Governor of Ogun in 2019 and I will not stop to clamour for it, until it comes to reality,’’ Baba Obasanjo stated.
He enjoined people of Ogun West not to allow anybody or group of politicians to divide them, but be united towards realizing their dream, pointing out that what happened in 2011 and 1015 elections should be avoided in 2019.
As Baba Obasanjo continues his speech one of his security personnel breeze in and whispers to him and Baba Obasanjo just stood up and followed the man, and within a tinkle of an eye he return to the table with the retired Nigerian Army General and former military president, Abdulsalam Abubakar who also paid a courtesy visit to Baba OBJ
Baba Obasanjo waste no time to introduce the retired Abdulsalam Abubakar to us and Abdulsalam also emphasised his views and encouraged the group to keep up with their vision as an indivisible body.
Thereafter, Baba Obasanjo invited us for a group photograph with his visistor and after the scene we returned to the meeting table where Baba Obasanjo continued his address.
Baba OBJ as he’s fondly called stated that “each time Ogun West presents many candidates for an election, it always divides their votes, “and this has been the major reason for the abortion of their long conceived dream of emerging as a governor”.
During the interactive session, Baba Obasanjo who said he believes in equity and justice also identified with the plight of Ogun West who has been denied the governorship seat of the state for so long.
The former President of Nigeria, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo again gave his support for the emergence of Ogun West indigene as the Governor of Ogun State in 2019.
While advising the media practitioners to also play their role to portray the image of the state positively and thus correcting the long held misconception of the people about Yewa-Awori and the saying that “Yewa-Awori does not have sons and daughters that are qualified to occupy the seat,” Baba Obasanjo assured the group of his unflinching support to excel.
The retired Nigerian Army General and former military president, Abdulsalam Abubakar who also paid a courtesy visit to Baba OBJ was introduced to the group and he also emphasised his view and encouraged the group to keep up with their vision as an indivisible body.
While commending the group, Baba OBJ acknowledged the role of the media in this period, saying that journalists have been derogated overtime, especially the community media. He however promised his unreserved support to the group.
Earlier, the National Coordinator of the group, who is also the publisher of the StarTrend Int’l magazine, Elhaji Abu-Satar Idowu Hamed said the group was created to give adequate information that could engender development especially at the grassroots and bring together citizens of Yewaland for the growth of the region, the state and Nigeria at large.
Some of the members in attendance during the visit include: Elhadj Abu-Satar Idowu Hamed, Mr. Akindele Akinola, Mr. Deji Adeyemi, Mr. Wole Banmeke, Mr. Rufai Abiola, Miss Balqis Ilufemiloye, Miss Mayomikun Fadipe and Mr. Lekan Ajibogun.
For Equity And Justice Yewa Must Be Governor Of Ogun By 2019 -Obasanjo …As He Hosts League of Yewa-Awori Media Practitioners
BY ABIOLA RUFAI & MAYOMIKUN FADIPE