Nine months after assuming office, Governor Gboyega Oyetola is yet to constitute his cabinet, thus raising concerns, writes Yinka Kolawole
Since Governor Gboyega Oyetola of Osun State assumed office some nine months ago, he is yet to constitute his cabinet, even when a majority of the states, which ran elections in May of this year, have almost put their cabinets in place.
Quite expectedly, the atmosphere in Osun now is tense as political associates and affiliates appear not happy with the conduct of the Governor for running the state without a team, suggesting, that Osun might have come up with standard practice in the governance chart of the nation.
A majority of the people, who are not comfortable with the way Oyetola has been running the state without a cabinet, argued that it was a flagrant abuse of power by the governor.
But they are beginning to see this as the new standard in Osun, because his predecessor, Rauf Aregbesola did same, both in his first and second terms, running the government for almost three years before constituting his cabinet.
It is, however, not startling that nine months after he was sworn into office, Governor Oyetola deemed nothing expedient in the constitution of his cabinet. Not just that, the fact that some former commissioners that served under Aregbesola, have been “supervising” the different ministries pending when substantive commissioners are appointed, confirms fears that Osun might have chosen to do things differently.
A notable politician in Osogbo, Mr. Kayode James, who spoke with THISDAY on the development, held the view that almost nine months after Governor Oyetola was sworn in, he was yet to nominate commissioners to lead the ministries in the state was a clear abuse of power.
He said the governor was acting contrary to popular beliefs that constituting a cabinet should be done within a few weeks of assuming office.
Also, a human rights activist in the state, Comrade Ajibola Aremu, was worried that the current government of Oyetola was being run by supervisors in practically all the ministries in the state, a development he claimed made it absurd.
He condemned the development because according to him, Oyetola restated some of Aregbesola’s Commissioners and made them supervisors in all the ministries to run the affair of the state, stressing that the actions were unconstitutional and alien to the country’s constitution.
He advised Oyetola to as a matter of urgency, set up a team that will legitimately run the affair of the state the way it should be.
But Oyetola, while reacting, has said the reason for the delay in the constitution of his cabinet was to ensure that those, who would bring the vision of his administration to fruition and serve the people selflessly made the cabinet list, adding that his cabinet would be ready “in a very short time”.
Chatting with journalists at his country home in Iragbiji, Oyetola stated that he was still processing the commissioner nominees that were sent to him from the federal constituencies in the state and would forward the list to the State House of Assembly afterward.
He explained that in line with the all-inclusive disposition of his government, leaders of the ruling All Progressives Congress were asked to provide those that would make the cabinet.
“We have asked the party (APC) to produce those that would make the cabinet. We decided to throw the process of appointing the commissioner to the party in line with our inclusive participatory governance.
“The process has started. We have seen the returns from the decisions from the federal constituencies in the state. We will then do our screening. I am processing the list. I am looking at considering the best – those that will bring our vision and serve our people. After my processing, the list will be sent to the State House of Assembly for screening and approval.
“We want to have the best hands in the cabinet. In a matter of time, we will get the cabinet ready. I will say it will be ready in a very short time,” he said.
Explaining why there appeared to be a delay in constituting the state’s cabinet, the who reassured the people that he would assemble competent hands, reiterated that, “I will run an all-inclusive government because my party will have a say in the way we will run our administration.
“Bringing members of other parties, who do not share the same vision and ideology with us may create a problem, but I will listen to ideas from them. We have given the party the opportunity to pick the commissioners.
“The process has commenced. We will look at the list. I will also screen before I send it to the House of Assembly. The process has commenced. It will be completed soon,” Oyetola restated.