—— AREGBESOLA GO ,APC GO
As Rauf Aregbesola, current governor of Osun State is now rounding off his two terms of eight years leadership of State of the Living Spring, the political atmosphere ,no doubt , is terribly charged . The civil servants are palpably on a killer mood ,ready for pound of flesh from the governor who has thrown the state into hopelessness and pauperized the entire populace . Even the party members re sharply divided . The situation is even made worse by the imposition of candidate from outside allegedly by his godfather .
Aregbesola’s emergence eight years ago undoubtedly, came with a lot of hopes and expectations. The governor’s tenure also came with revelations, frequent controversies and turbulence. Certainly, the governor who cut his political teeth under the famous former governor of Lagos State, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu weathered almost all the storm his governorship generated. At least, no body or group was able to impeach him.
Now, as Aregbesola prepares to hand over to a successor, a major battle awaits him. Interestingly, the political terrain has changed remarkably in Osun and beyond. Apart from the preponderance of new enemies even within, Aregbesola’s All Progressives Congress, APC, must prepare to face the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP and the Social Democratic Party ,SDP. in a final test for popularity and relevance. The APC will as a party, also carry the general atmosphere of unfulfilled electoral promises as baggage into the forth-coming election.
Aregbesola’s critics have severally criticised him of many sins. Prominent among them is his dictatorial tendencies and the Osun School Reclassification programmes that almost tore the state apart. During this period, the governor, unfortunately took steps that were discriminatory against a particular religion in his quest for solutions to the religious crisis. There was also the bizarre introduction of Ifa as a subject in Osun schools and what many consider as the governor’s unpopular creation of Local Council Development Authorities, LCDA’s across the state. There are also issues around what they describe as the governor’s lack of consultation before making appointments and the gradual pauperization of Osun people. Even among staunch supporters of the governor in the state’s factionalised APC, there is fear of the PDP because of the ruling party’s dwindling fortunes. This may not be farfetched .. . The issues of this coming election, no doubt, is expected to border overwhelmingly on the welfare of the people of the state of the living spring . Moreover, the unwritten rule of government is that ,as the economy goes ,so goes everything else .Only a candidate or party standard bearer that is fiscally responsible ,socially hard-headed and business minded with trust and character shall appeal strongly to the mindset of the electorates this time inOsun State . The economy of the state is and for long, stranded by slow growth and it is fearing much worse . waiting for a rescue .Falling real income ,growing debt, raw social divisions and moral drift are palpable everywhere .Surely , the theme of this election is not going to be ideological , ;untold hardship has reduced the ideological gap between the parties and it is not likely to be a decisive factor. No wonder, the oppositions have continued with a campaign slogan towards the welfare of the people, making the economy the real imperative.