Kwara, the making of another dynasty, by Abdulbasit Oniwiridi

 

Editor’s note: Opinions, views and expressions in this article are purely those of the author and do not represent the views, opinions and expressions of Insight Multi-Links Media.

An article authored by Ishowo Isiak Oluwatosin caught my attention, where he questioned the rationality of OTOGE political struggle as a revolution. Something is however clear in the piece; the writer concluded within himself as reflected in his choice and use of words, that OTOGE was a rebellion where he said “The way the affairs of APC as a party has been managed immediately the administration of AA kick started has indicated that the historical defeat of the Saraki dynasty was not made possible through revolution but rebellion.”
Against this line of argument usually pushed by the dethroned Sen. Bukola Saraki led dynasty sympathizers, I am of the opinion that desperate attempt to cast aspersion on the novel OTOGE revolution is not only unthinkable but an attempt to misrepresent historical narratives and further insult the sensibilities of our people who fought hard to install a political system that enables the son of a nobody becoming somebody, without necessarily subjecting self to sycophantic political tendencies. 
 
Unfortunately so, the man who became Governor, his foot soldiers. and vuvuzelas are also caught in the habit of demonizing everyone who participated in the sociopolitical revolution as people who only desires access to public treasury. They have however refused to mention names and show Kwarans evidences of the kleptomaniac proposition of any of these political actor, rather, such insinuations are being shoot like devilish missiles from the dark. Only evil people do that, the righteous is not always afraid to talk once convinced about the truth. 
 
While we may have individual perception of the different personalities who ganged up to dismantle the hegemonic dynasty of the Sarakis, it is more important for us as a people whom OTOGE has richly nourished our political history, however, the unfortunate side to the story is that the struggle might have left Kwarans at the mercy of another viper in our bosom. It will however be healthy, if we discuss issues and not personalities behind the struggle, to have a clearer picture of the unfolding development. 
 
What is OTOGE and its underlying ideology?
 
OTOGE reflected Kwarans desire for sociopolitical dignity, developmental thirst and a transparent and accountable system that guarantees equal opportunity for all. Conversely, OTOGE was a movement that resonates our scornful disposition to one family domination of our political space like a monarchical leadership, underdevelopment and politically saturated system that favors only the mighty and their cronies. More so, characterized by sheer political arrogance and disdain for opposing views as permissible under democratic norms. 
 
Kwarans wanted a State that will be owned by everyone, whose destiny is decided by the people. Some people must lead this struggle, which they have done and the judgment of whether or not it was revolution or rebellion lies on sustenance of such principles of the OTOGE struggle, regardless of who or what political party is in power. Anyone who supported OTOGE and abating the sociopolitical anomalies that necessitated it, for any reason, should be profiled as nothing but hypocrites. 
 
We fought against one family domination, corruption, lack of sustainable development, political arrogance and ineptitude. But is the worse of it not happening under the government enabled by OTOGE? Maybe Enough is yet to be Enough in Kwara. 
 
Truly, history is repeating itself. When Saraki held sway in Kwara politics, his sing praisers were quick to dress his critics in the robe of envy or hatred for the leader of the dynasty (Sen. Bukola Saraki), just like the present proponents of Governor Abdulrazaq are frantically trying to frame everyone against the Governor as either envying him, sponsored by opposition or bittered because of lack of political patronage. Humorously, sizeable number of Saraki erstwhile hailers are leading hailing mission for Governor Abdulrazaq, including the suspended local government Chairmen, whose corruption case with the EFCC has been swept under carpet because they are now Governor Abdulrazaq’s good boys. Where is the Change?
Recently, news broke about the sack of the Director General of Kwara state Bureau of Lands, Bolaji Edun. Only for CPS to the Governor Rafiu Ajakaiye fo refute his sack, saying he is to be given another position due to cessation of the Bureau. Independent findings however showed that a Permanent Secretary was actually appointed and currently serving in the DG capacity. Findings also showed that the manner Edun was rubbished out of office does not go down well with the Governor’s brother who hitherto nominated him for the appointment and reason for the face saving deceit rubbed on Kwarans face by the supposed government of change.
 
If anything has changed about the governance and political practice of the past, it is probably for the worse. The presence of what the OTOGE revolutionaries rejected in Bukola Saraki in this administration is visibly in multiple folds. 
 
Unlike the rejected ugly past where  Bukola Saraki dictated even to a State Governor, what to do and what not, with little or no interference of family members, the sitiation is now uglier. We now have a Kwara where the government is not led by Governor Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq but the Abdulrazaqs. Just like keen observers suggested, it is appearing more like the Abdulrazaqs only used the OTOGE revolution as a vehicle to win its age long family supremacy battle against the Sarakis, with other revolutionaries suffering information asymetry. 
 
We are now in a Kwara, where majority of commissioners and political appointees were either nominated by the Governor’s wife, his ex-Senator sister, who nominated the former Education commissioner, or another sister of his who nominated former commisioner for water resources, or his brothers who nominated several political appointees, including former Lands Bureau DG and late Chief of Staff Adisa Logun. With these sad realities, we might have simply left Saraki dynasty for Abdulrazaq dynasty. This does not represent the OTOGE ideal and resistance to such only depicts consistency and being true to one’s position.
Nonetheless the signature treachery nature of Governor Abdulrazaq, which are well documented by political historians privy to his political adventure in the various party he has belonged before the 2019 general elections, his desperation to hijack his party is another move synonymous with dynastic leaders. Like Saraki, like Abdulrazaq, he wants to be the sole factor, whose actions no one question. 
 
While Kwara is still struggling with implementation of minimum wage, our Governor is busy investing in party destabilization. Notwithstanding the huge amount of money spent to sponsor the misadventures between Abuja and Ilorin, agents of political disruption have been feeding fat and smiling to the bank on Kwarans common patrimony, while praying the crisis never ends. What an attitudinal synonym between political leaders across time in Kwara!
 
For the records, Kwara is at the verge of making another Saraki in Abdulrazaq, who will turn himself to an unchallengeable political beast if left unchecked. 
 
While he continues to hoodwink Kwarans with routine projects that are not also absent in recent rejected past, contract inflation at the ministry of education and works, scandalous tractor hiring project at the ministry of agriculture, management of local government finances among several others remain transparency and accountability issues this government is enmeshed in. The more things change, the worse they remain appear.
Meanwhile, I congratulate Kwarans on the new debt of 35billion naira about to be incur in bond by Governor Abdulrazaq.
Oniwiridi is a PhD student at the University of Ife, he can be reached via Oniwiridibas@gmail.com