Before We Sleep - Stray Bullet: Fayemi And The Rest of Us by Tai Oguntayo
Take it or leave it, former Governor of Ekiti State and Minister of Mines & solid minerals, Dr Kayode Fayemi, is the man in the news now. If not for the giant strides in his ministry, it will be for Ekiti State controversial administrative panel or for his rumoured governorship ambition. For whichever amongst the afore listed, Kayode the son of Fayemi is in the news and no one can take that away.
It will not be only time wasting but also hypocritical for anyone to think that everybody's opinion on Dr Kayode Fayemi can be the same or that comments on him should be pleasing to his ears always. One thing that is however crystal clear, is that though a leader may not talk, he knows when any of his followers is sincere and when he or she is being hypocritical. So, there is no cause for disagreement amongst the followers, each and everyone should be free to pursue whichever way they believe will make them to be on the right side of posterity.
For some time now, I've rested this column because there were series of blackmail here and there as to where the Publisher belongs in the politics of our dear State. I've made it clear to those who care to listen that I, Akogun Tai Oguntayo, as a political animal, belong to the JKF (John Kayode Fayemi) Political Family and I am eminently qualified to say that I deserve to know or hear from our leader (JKF) from time to time. Leadership and followership should be a two-way relationship, it's all about mutual understanding, mutual respect, mutual agreement and mutual communication.
This, to the best of my knowledge, is what exists between the minister and his followers one of whom I hereby boldly confirm to be. So, if, as a critical stakeholder in APC Ekiti State and JKF family, I and other notable leaders across the State are yet to hear from the leader that he will be contesting the governorship primary election coming up in less than three months, then such information cannot be more qualified than a first class rumour! Except of course those brandishing such information are claiming to be more of JKF than the rest of us or that we are persona non grata in our respective localities.
The last meeting held at the Isan Ekiti residence of Dr Fayemi in the series of interface with the harrow heads of his political family in 2017, he categorically stated that on Ekitigate he stood and that anything short of that he would not contest. He told the 20 of us from the 16 local government areas of the State categorically that: "if Ekitigate does not work out, it is one of you that we will all queue behind". To my pleasant surprise and the excitement of those there at the meeting, Dr Fayemi further said: "if it is this Tai (pointing at me) that we tip to go for the governorship, he knows where the five kilometer road project stopped in his Local government having served there as the Secretary to the Local government." I could remember everyone at that meeting clapped and up till today, some still call me The Guv, all because it came out of the horse's mouth. So how on earth will some people be peddling rumour around presenting the leader as being inconsistent? Will it now be that those of us at the meeting are inconsequential or what?I've been calling each and everyone of us who attended the meeting, comprising of former Commissioners, former lawmakers, former council bosses, body of SAs and SSAs, it is the same story - Oga never told us! Even if the outcome of the primary is going to be written without counting delegates' votes, is it not politically strategic to, at least, make the stakeholders feel relevant before then if only to silence them? All these are there and people who truly love Dr Fayemi are baring out their minds on the dangers inherent in this deafening silence only for some people we know hardly attend their ward meetings now calling us names! Each of this tiny clique deceiving the leader, has at one time or the other, supported one or two of the APC Contestants collecting huge amount of money from them. It's so bad that even one of those who claim to just keep following was openly accused of approaching 80% of the aspirants for his children's school fees, house rent, food stuffs and what not! Another one is said to be on monthly pay of an aspirant as a media consultant while at the same time competing with the Minister's official spokesperson! They will tell you they have been with JKF since only God knows when, yet there is no place where anyone is called together three months to the primary.
In any case, as we lay our bed, so we shall sleep on it but one thing that's clear is that if APC leadership opens its eyes and allows Fayose's to wallow them shamelessly again, unborn generation will not forgive the leaders. People are looking unto the three former governors in the State, who by Providence are today in the same party. If Fayose's surrogate should defeat APC again due to greed and self centeredness, then Fayose will be vindicated that truly he gave APC 16-0 in the last governorship election.
Fountain Newsbreaker as a Business venture with social responsibility. It is not hidden that the Publisher of Fountain Newsbreaker is a politician, neither is it hidden that he belongs to APC. Should this now becloud his sense of objectivity? No! Should that now turn the paper to an official mouthpiece of APC? No! Should that now make the paper not to interview a cross section of people for fear of being sponsored to attack Otunba Adebayo, JKF, Oni, Ojudu etc? No! If answer to all these is no, then of what moral justification is a fellow journalist or anyone for that matter who had never for once cared to know what's happening at Fountain Newsbreaker to now level unsubstantiated allegation against the paper? I made bold to say that this is the greatest disservice anyone will ever do to his professional colleague! If Fountain Newsbreaker is not among the grassroot newspapers that our accusers were mobilized to give patronage, then our editorial contents shouldn't be of any concern to our them.
All said and done, more than ever before this paper is prepared to give space to whoever shows interest irrespective of political affiliation. If APC members could ventilate their minds on any of their leaders through Fountain Newsbreaker and the paper is being blackmailed, then what happens if a notable PDP leader or even Governor Fayose is featured on the cover story of the paper and APC leaders are lashed? Then the Publisher will be crucified by his accusers! Let it be known today that just like President Muhamadu Buhari, we are for nobody and we are for everybody!