A prominent Ibadan-based politician, Bukola Rotimi Omotoso Esq., has lampooned the Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs, Alh. Bayo Lawal, for what he described as an “open display of arrogance, unbridled pride, and a celebration of heavy betrayal”.
Omotoso, an ally of Senator Olufemi Lanlehin (Solan), while speaking with newsmen in Ibadan, the Oyo State capital, on Sunday, noted that, coming from the same Ibadan North-East Local Government like Bayo Lawal, he knows him like the lines on his palms, hence, competent enough to comment on his needless fawning.
“To start with, I’m speaking in my private capacity, as I know so well Senator Lanlehin has a functional Media Bureau to offer a reply if he chooses to. However, I feel a sense of history to react to Alh. Lawal’s show of shame on Fresh FM’s Political Circuit, lest the younger generation think betraying gentlemanly agreements, and then boasting openly about it, is a virtue. No, it isn’t, it’s a vice” Omotoso began.
Recall Alh. Lawal, had on Fresh FM’s Political Circuit aired on Saturday, carpeted the likes of Senator Lanlehin, Barrister Sarafadeen Alli, Engr. Femi Babalola (Jogor) and Alh. Bisi Olopoenia, for complaining of being sidelined in the scheme of things, after the laudable roles they played in the governor’s emergence. Alh. Lawal subsequently called them overrated, describing them as “political chickens”.
Omotoso, who described Lawal as an unrepentant sycophant, whose present position in government seemed to have blindfolded him against realities which ordinarily are before his naked eyes, called on him to desist from “chest thumping in a marathon, when only a few metres have been run”.
“As DG of the Seyi Makinde Campaign Organisation, does he want to claim he doesn’t know the truth about the coalition arrangement? And since his principal has elected to betray it, can’t he keep his mouth shut, and enjoy his appointment in guilt and shame?
“Why on earth would he claim the coalition arrangement was between parties, when he knows, that Senator Lanlehin, Barrister Alli and Chief Bolaji Ayorinde SAN, were the ones who after meeting many times, dropped their governorship ambitions, and agreed to coalesce, for the victory Governor Makinde eventually enjoyed. Was it not for the purposes of a working agreement that the candidate’s respective Campaign DGs were later brought in, after which they agreed on a formula which was reduced into writing and subsequently adopted by their principals?
“It is trite, that to enjoy unmerited heritage, people spin foolish history. What’s really offensive, is a childish glee coming from persons, who otherwise should be respectable elders in the land. What kind of advice will people like this offer the Governor? Aren’t this the set of “dance on, we’re with you”? Anyway, what do you expect from someone like Bayo Lawal who has no known profession nor done a decent non-political job in his entire life?
Omotoso, who also condemned the Commissioner’s attempt to discredit Senator Lanlehin, for moving from one political party to the other, asked him to analyse Lanlehin’s political trajectory, to know that the ex-Oyo South Senator has always left the ruling party to the opposition, in pursuit of principles, fairness and good governance. Not the other way round, like him who ran from pillar to post, in a bid to be made Commissioner.
“When Lanlehin left the Alliance for Democracy (AD), which was the ruling party in Lagos, and moved to Ibadan, he joined the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), which was the opposition party, and contributed immensely to the party’s electoral victory in 2003, both locally and at the centre. When he left the ruling PDP, he teamed up with others to breath life into then opposition Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN), on whose banner he was elected Senator in 2011.
When he left the ruling ACN, which had merged to become the All Progressives Congress (APC), for reasons that are widely advertised, he joined Accord, which was the main opposition then in Oyo State. Despite the benefits acruable in belonging to the ruling party, he stayed put in the opposition. When he agreed to work for Governor Makinde’s victory, having stepped down as candidate of the African Democratic Congress (ADC), he still remained in the opposition. Can a man without principle or conscience do that?
“Let me remind Alh. Lawal, assuming he’s forgotten, or he doesn’t know, probably because he just teamed up with his new principal, hence may not know the latter’s political history, here’s a refresh – Makinde began his political life in the PDP in 2002, before he joined then All Nigeria Peoples Party (ANPP), where the 2007 Oyo South Senatorial District ticket, which had already been won by late Charles Olalekan Obisesan, was offered to him. After losing the Senatorial election to Senator Kamoru Adedibu in 2007, he re-joined the PDP, and contested the primaries against the incumbent Adedibu in 2011, and lost. He later joined the SDP, having tried several parties, albeit unsuccessfully, and was offered the governorship ticket. He contested and lost the 2015 governorship election woefully, coming a distant fourth. He even lost his polling unit!
He later rejoined the PDP again, and was assisted by the coalition, to clinch his life ambition of becoming governor in 2019. Alh. Lawal shouldn’t be clever by half,” Omotosho added.
“Imagine an individual privy to the truth of the coalition arrangement distorting facts of history? With people like him in Makinde’s kitchen cabinet, the governor needs no more enemies, he already has them summarised in Alh. Bayo Lawal,” Omotoso fired.
The Ibadan-born lawyer while calling on Alh. Lawal to be mindful of his utterances, particularly in disdaining persons whose political weight, stature and relevance dwarfs his, advised him to be contrite, as “the masquerade festival is bound to be over one day, and the handler’s child in desperate need of beancake”.