Governor Olusegun Mimiko
Some interesting things are happening in the build-up to the October 20 governorship election in Ondo State which would be a battle royale between the state Governor Olusegun Mimiko and Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) National Leader Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, sorry ACN governorship candidate Mr. Oluwarotimi Akeredolu (SAN). One of such developments is the issue of who really is the alien, the illegal alien if you like. It was actually the National Chairman of Labour Party (Mimiko’s party), Dan Nwanyanwu who stirred the hornet’s nest. Nwanyanwu had told LP supporters in Owo last week that the residents should not vote “aliens” who would cart away their resources from Ondo State.
He was obviously referring to Asiwaju Tinubu from Lagos State who is backing Akeredolu, the party’s candidate for the election, but who is actually waging a brutal battle against Governor Mimiko who he said betrayed him and the ACN. Mimiko, his party chairman and aides have framed the October 20 election as the battle between Mimiko and those out to lord it over the state from outside. So, Nwanyanwu spoke out in the context of that framing of the poll, that understanding. The ACN people understood the rhetoric and have responded in equal measure. In a statement, Akeredolu’s Director of Media and Publicity, Idowu Ajanaku, asked: “The question the people of Ondo State should ask Nwanyanwu is: who is an alien between him and Mr. Oluwarotimi Akeredolu (SAN) the son of the soil, or Asiwaju Bola Tinubu? Who is the alien if I may ask? We are talking about Ondo poll mind you. Akeredolu from Owo is a son of the soil, Asiwaju is from Lagos, a NADECO chieftain who, according to Ajanaku, “fought alongside the late Ondo State governor Adekunle Ajasin, Chief Bisi Akande, Chief Segun Osoba, Alhaji Lam Adesina, among others, to liberate the Yoruba from the jaws of the late Head of State General Sani Abacha.”
In any case, Asiwaju Tinubu is a budding Yoruba leader who already has five states of Lagos, Oyo, Osun, Ogun and Ekiti states in his embrace with only Ondo waiting in the wings to be captured. What about Nwanyanwu, an Igbo man from Mbaise in Imo State, several hundreds of kilometres away from Owo? Perhaps in a way Nwanyanwu could even be said to be more Ondo than Asiwaju Tinubu! After all, whereas, Tinubu is the newly-appointed Chancellor of Ladoke Akintola University of Technology (LAUTECH) owned by the governments of Oyo and Osun states, Nwanyanwu is the Pro-Chancellor of Adekunle Ajasin University (AAU), Akungba-Akoko, owned by the Ondo State government.