Records are made to be broken, so goes the saying. What the speaker would fail to add is that the statement rings hollow when applied to the arena of politics in Nigeria. In a field that is more a country for old men than an arena for leaders of any age to strut their stuff, the concept of young people in leadership positions is largely alien.
To find young people who are actually young — and not old men in young roles — one would have to climb down all the way to the ward level. The leaders at the center, catapulted into office on the shoulders of patronage politics, turn appointments into cake-sharing ventures where everyone who lent a hand must get their due. The problem, of course, is that the leaders of tomorrow are usually too young or too low on the totem pole to lend them a hand today.
Due praise, then, goes to the rare few who embrace the ethos that the youth can be leaders today. In the south west, especially, it is unheard of to hand the office of commissioner to a relative sapling of less than three decades on earth. Yet, that is precisely what the executive governor of Oyo State, His Excellency, Engineer Seyi Makinde, has done.
The young man in question, Seun Fakorede, is an alumnus of the Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, and hails from Idere community in Ibarapa Central Local Government Area. He went through the Oyo House of Assembly screening few days back and neither his character nor his readiness for the job was found lacking.
Some have since claimed that the governor’s gesture was mere tokenism aimed at extracting undeserved praise from Oyo youths. Those in the know, however, argued the young man is deserving of the role, having achieved so much in his little time of venturing into the entrepreneurial space.
He board chairman at Reasone innovations – a branding, visual communication and marketing agency., co-founder & heads at Boddiemax Premium Fashion Brand, founder and executive director of Home Advantage Africa, and a former civil engineer at the Lagos State Development and Property Corporation. With such a sizeable pedigree, it was no wonder Governor Makinde handpicked him as one of those to execute his policy of upliftment in Oyo State.