Recall that the tenure of Fmr. Governor of Ondo State, Olusegun Mimiko ended on 23/2/2017 and Arakunrin Rotimi Odunayo Akeredolu took the mantle of leadership on 24/2/2017 at an event held at Ondo State Stadium, Akure.
The election that democratically made this possible took place on 25th November, 2016 and results declared the next day.
Mimiko tried to choose a successor but was resisted by the People of Ondo State led by Jimoh Ibrahim, a man that God Almighty used to deliver His People, he did everything to block the incumbent from rubber-stamping a successor for the people of Ondo State who had their worst governor so far in the history of the State in outgoing Gov. Mimiko.
As soon as Gov. Mimiko saw the handwriting on the wall, he changed his strategy and quickly relocated to Abuja where he hurriedly visited President Buhari two times in succession within the month of November, 2017 on Ondo State election and negotiated with APC at the National level where he agreed to the candidacy of Arakunrin Akeredolu in exchange for soft landing. He usually blab in the afternoon, threatened fire and brim stones and in the night he was negotiating his exit with soft landing with the powers that be.
As part of the negotiation, it was agreed that Aketi shall not probe Mimiko no matter what happened to the account of Ondo State(even with zero kobo as balance). It was also said that part of the agreement is that Arakunrin Akeredolu will not dissolve the Local Government Councils in Ondo State but allow the incumbents in the 18 LGs in Ondo State to run out their terms. It was also agreed that Gov Mimiko shall join APC as soon as practicable after office. The whole World can notice that Mimiko has now been distancing himself from anything PDP. He no longer attends their meetings and has refused to make any statement about the recent judgment. His publicists have been making postings like “if PDP cannot handle Sheriff, how can they handle APC in 2019” and are of recent defending President Buhari’s absence. Those who knew Mimiko will know his style of handling this type of porting!
Those who were privy to the meeting also informed me that he asked for Ministerial slot from PMB and the President was quoted to have said “let’s see what will happen”.
As soon as the above were sealed, Mimiko backed down on his candidate. Eyitayo Jegede was the only candidate who has no Campaign Committee and a DG and Mimiko also decided to starve his candidate of funds on election day. It is on record that Mimiko released a paltry sum of 60k per unit to PDP Leader to go to the election in which everything was at stake. Those who knew Mimiko when it comes to election issues can quickly decode that he has jettisoned his godson Eyitayo Jegede SAN at the last minute for his room mate at the University and one of his Lawyers during his days at the trenches Arakunrin Odunayo Akeredolu. He also told some of his close confidants that it is all over at the eve of the November 25th 2016 election.
As soon as the election was over, Mimiko persuaded Jegede to jettison the idea of going to court to challenge the election and a day after the results were announced, Jegede released a video image on all social media congratulating Akeredolu and that he was not going to challenge the result.
On the part of the Governor elect, being a gentleman, he reciprocated the gesture of Mimiko and quickly informed the whole World that he was not elected to probe anyone as probe is a distraction that may not yield any result after wasting money on it. This is to the disappointment of his supporters who never expected such statement from Aketi because of what the people of Ondo State went through under Mimiko.
Aketi also backed his words with action paid visit to Mimiko and praised Mimiko with a comment that angered and raged the people of Ondo State to the effect that it will take extra ordinary effort to surpass the record of Mimiko who at the last count is owing Ondo State Workers 7 months salary, 4 months deduction and 25 months pension arrears despite collecting Federal Allocation till date and have been collecting an additional #1B per month called Budget support fund that Ondo State People only got to know courtesy of Governor Fayose when Ekiti allocation was seized recently.
In further reverence of Mimiko, Aketi visited him when some political activists protested and blocked Mimiko from passing 38 bills and present 2017 Budget some 22 days to handover date where it was said the governor elect apologised to him on behalf of his party (APC) members. The 7 activists are still in Olokuta Prison as (awaiting trials) prisoners of conscience till date.
As a student of Niccolo Machiavelli, Mimiko do not believe in anyone including Aketi and his actions; himself being a serial betrayer in the past.
In order to cover the field and perfect everything in case of change of gear by the incoming Governor, Mimiko has been putting his cronies in all agencies in which questions may be asked in future among other deadly steps like calling for all project files and doctoring them; burning some files of failed projects like Okeluse Cement Factory, Arigidi Tomatoes Paste Factoty, Awara Dam recticulation project, Ileoluji Stadium and so on; seeking to pass unprecedented 38 bills (to cover all frauds and to give himself life pension when he has failed to pay pension in 25 months) in one swoop at all cost though failed.
Of recent, he appointment the State Accountant General , a man from Ileoluji who has been in acting capacity; Just three days ago, he dissolved the Ondo State Council of Obas and announced Kabiyesi Olukare as the new Chairman(Though he played no role in the emergence but he used it to score cheap political point as usual); Two days ago, he announced the appointment of Professor Sunday Roberts Ogunduyile as Vice Chancellor of OSUTECH(a University he has abandoned for 8 year) and just yesterday, he also confirmed Engr. Ologunagba as the Rector of RUGIPO. This was a man that has been acting Rector for 2 years. While the new VC who is an Ekimogun man is a cousin to Mimiko, the new Rector is a brother to Hon. Debo Ologunagba from Iwaro- Oka (one of the unrepentant loyalist of Mimiko). Arakunrin, you can guage the loyalty of the duo with my short analysis.
Under the concept of a reasonable man, one must ask what is wrong with Mimiko? why is he making all these last minute appointments? Why the rush? Why can’t he leave all these in his handover notes if he can leave 7 months salary arrears, 4 months deduction, 25 months of pension arrears and #250B debt both local and foreign in the said hand over notes?
I have been searching my mind for an answer and the only reasonable answer that kept coming is the fear of unknown! Mimiko is making last minute appointment into key sector of the State using People who are loyal to him and who shall cover his tracks from any eventually in case of any probe! He is also loading the Civil Service through the back door to create problem for the incumbent. A good example is his current recruitment of fresh 90 workers at the Adekunle Ajasin University, Akungba, 34 at UNIMED, 57 at OSUTECH and 47 at RUGIPO. This is aside steady recruitment of freshers in other offices in Ondo State.
Ondo State People should also be reminded that Mimiko has embarked on commissioning of the so called 100 projects in the last one month wherein he spent about #2.9B from which he settled many prominent people who were recruited and imported to Akure with all expenses paid to sing Mimiko’s praises but who never guaged the mood of the people of Ondo State who are suffering in the midst of plenty.(May God forgive people like Baba Ayo Adebanjo who always sing always the always try given opportunity, Awolowo’s daughter who because of brown envelope nearly rated Mimiko above his father because of only one Mega Nonsense in the midst of slums, Mr. Wale Ojo Lanre- Tribune Tourism News Editor who has almost changed his citizenship from Ekiti to Ondo State and a Mimiko Trumpheter and unofficial S.A to Mimiko on Awards Procurement, our own Chief Olu Falae who has continued to patronise Mimiko despite his huge, irreparable and irreplaceable loss etc just to mention a few).
Ondo State People is grateful to the Acting President Prof. Osinbajo who tactically avoided and dodge Mimiko and refused to be roped into crowning of the Ceremony of Fraud with commissioning of uncompleted dome of #18B between last Friday 17th and Monday 20th February, 2017. Has anyone questioned the reason Mimiko has not invited Goodluck Jonathan who is the PDP Leader who made Mimiko a second term Governor? This is because Mimiko believes that Jonathan is gone spent and our man can no longer gain anything from him! No Conscience!
Apart from commission galore of both completed and uncompleted projects like the Community Health Centres Alagbaka that has no windows but yet commissioned and some roads in Owo that are not in existence, Mimiko also awarded new contracts. Are you aware of a certain $750,000:00 (Dollar) grant recently paid to Ondo State by WHO? The grant has now become what is called garbage in and garbage out in computer as Mimiko has already awarded a last minute contract to ‘lift’ the grant. The contract is for supply of a medical equipment. Are you aware that he paid additional #420M for street light at the uncompleted but already commissioned Oba-Ile road? He also awarded the uncompleted Owo dualised road Street lights.
APC has failed woefully to monitor Mimiko and he has dealt a last minute blow to the finances of Ondo State. APC didn’t learn anything from Ekiti when Fayose was waiting to be sworn-in to succeed Fayemi!
Based on the above, may I use this medium to advice you sir as the incoming Governor who is due to take over in an event scheduled for 5:30 pm this evening at Alagbaka governor’s office today pending the ceremony tomorrow. This event was originally schedule for 2:30 pm but was shifted to enable the outgoing Governor give staff of office to some new Kabiyesis according to information from the protocol office of the outgoing Governor. (Another last minute appointment).
These last minute actions of Mimiko will seriously affect the smooth running of government of Arakunrin as it may end up in credibility crisis. The incoming Governor may have to find it difficult to reverse all these last minute and desperate actions. For instance, the newly recruited 90 freshers in AAUA may be irreversible and this will affect the system because you will have to reabsorb the 60 people dismissed illegally at AAUA and about 48 at RUGIPO in 2012 who were alleged to be sympathetic to your cause then in ACN with all their salaries paid till date. This is the only thing that can make them happy and not regret believing in you and keeping faith in you till date for 4 years running.
On the last minute appointment of heads of all tertiary institutions in Ondo State, the action of of Mimiko will definitely create problem because removing them (which you need to do and must do) will pitch those men against you and if you don’t, you should be ready to work with people with divided loyalty and your government will have no secret. Remember that some Senior Lecturers were molested and victimised because of you, e.g Theo Adebowale formerly of AAUA, Professor Akinnawo, Dr. Okajare, Dr. Oluwasegunota Bolarinwa, Prof. Aboluwoye, Dr. Bolu Oshodi, Dr. Fayose, Prof. Yomi Dinakin, Prof. Akinawonu etc. Recall also that some Professors were removed by illegal Visitation Panel set up at OAU then and whose outcome was already predetermined to allow an annointed candidate to become VC of AAUA 7 years ago. (the rest is now history) These People look up to you for justice! You need to do justice on this issue!
On the Accountant General, I heard that he has been pretending to be loyal to you by relocating to London to avoid carrying on some instructions on last minute looting. Arakunrin Akeredolu, I want to assure you that this is a game of pretence and deceit. Are you aware sir that Mimiko has just paid part of the furniture and severance package of his over 800 appointees in raw cash where the least paid got #2.5M? (He paid in cash). The few that are yet to collect are those that are yet to submit official cars. Have you asked how he got over #2.5B from the coffers of the State to pay in cash? He was assisted by this Accountant General who is only pretending to be loyal to you to get cash to pay. An Accountant General appointment by Mimiko cannot be 100% loyal to you. Mimiko must have had a tete-a-tete with him and agreed on terms to cover some tracks for him and he will reveal some things to his appointor whether you like it or not.
My incoming Governor, your ways shall be very rough because I can see some booby traps and you have condone the outgoing Governor too much to the level and extent that he may take shine out of your government in matter of months if you cannot make a difference. (Please do not make Mimiko a hero). You are about to inherit the hugest debt ever in Ondo State with unpaid 7 months salaries, deductions and pension arrears of over 2 years.
The people of Ondo State are very impatient and would expect you to quickly impact on their lives in the light of 8 years of motion without movement and outstanding salaries of workers for 7 months. The people will not take any excuse or buck passing from you. Kindly note the way Nigerians are giving it to PMB at the Federal level that he should stop blaming GEJ and impact on Nigerians.
You have slept too much on your rights and allowed so many despicable things to go on from November 26 till date. Your patience is too much sir! You may pay dearly for this if you are not decisive!
I will advise you to quickly do the following within 2 weeks of your taking office.
(1). Let the people of Ondo State know the amount of money left in the State account and the debt left behind for your government by the outgoing government;
(2). Do kindly give a template of how you intend to pay the outstanding salaries and what you need to do to reduce hunger in Ondo State;
(3).Pronounce by fiat and let the illegally dismissed workers of AAUA and RUGIPO resume immediately with arrangements made on how to pay their outstanding salaries;
(4). Reverse the State logo and orange colour and do not continue with the usage of the Ondo State logo and the orange colour as it is presently constituted. Both represent poverty! (I can sill note it in the transition invitation cards);
(5).Let the People of Ondo State know that there is a difference between your government and that of Mimiko as it is being brandied, boasted and peddled now due to utterances of some core Mimiko followers and some of your actions that your government is an extension of Mimiko’s government ;
(6). Reverse all the last minute appointments made from November 28th, 2016 be it political or employment except if you were carried along before those appointments were made!
(7). Go after all last minute contractors and ensure that they deliver on the jobs;
(8). Remember those who work with you and for you from Primary to General election. Please consider them appointable and let them taste in the pot of soup. Ondo State is blessed enough with human resources and so call technocrats. Do not bring any external for any appointment. It is always counter-productive! That was the beginning of the failure of the outgoing Governor.
(9). Shun any counsel of Ahitope from Mimiko and his cohorts and distance yourself from him. If you identify with him, the consequences will hit you hard and you will soon lose credibility and followership. He is a negative indelible stain.
(10). If you can make a difference, Ondo State People will take you as that Messiah who is to come but if you fail to deliver, you can visualise what the People of Ondo State are capable of doing.
(11). Learn from Mimiko who came in like a valiant and hero but who is leaving on a low with ignominy. (He is the Biblical King Saul of our time). May you not end like Mimiko, Amen!
However sir, despite the unpardonable shortcomings of the outgoing Governor, I can attest to it that we enjoyed absolute freedom of speech under Mimiko and he never at any time in 8 years made any attempt to arrest, beat or kill anyone based on our opinion and Facebook posting about Ondo State whether such is true or false. He was very kind in that aspect. We expect that to continue unbridled under your government come rain or sunshine, come day or night!
The good People of Ondo State are with you as you hold their destiny in trust in the next 4 years. It shall be well with you and Ondo State and the sun shall shine again.
I shall talk about other things when you take office. I wish you what I wish myself!
Tolu Babaleye ESQ writes from Wuse Zone 5 – Abuja.