All is fair in love and war, goes the saying. Nobody ever mentions what happens after either. Never put it past Nigerian politicians to rattle the board of general convention. Observe two former rivals, Senator Abiola Ajimobi and Governor Seyi Makinde of Oyo state: the budding warmth between these two evidences a seed of friendship that was sown away from public eyes.
Only recently, Governor Makinde bested the candidate of Senator Ajimobi in the gubernatorial elections. Bearing in mind the raucous native to polling crusades in Nigeria, one would have expected that the present First Man of Oyo State would want nothing to do with his predecessor. Even less expected is Senator Ajimobi’s liaison with his successor.
If there is a sore loser in this game, he is not putting his hands up. This is altogether surprising for a host of less obvious reasons, one of which is the personality of Senator Ajimobi. Known as a man with a lethal scorpion tail for a tongue, the former governor is not one to suffer an onslaught of defeat only to take a quiet time at the corner. He is the kind that shakes off the heat of loss and finds ways to fry his opponent in a foray of practiced lethalness. But this calculating cat of humble beginnings has sheathed his claws – or so it seems. After all, “the jackal”, writes Rudyard Kipling “may follow the tiger, but curb when the whiskers are grown”.
Time will tell.
In the meantime, recent reports on these powerful men imply that the bond of camaraderie is amenable to all concerned, especially their mother state, Oyo. With the Senator becoming a regular at the Oyo Government House, one expects that this friendship will bring all hands on deck and bear the state towards fresh pastures of economic growth and development.
Naturally, other reports are gaining ground that all is not as it appears. Both parties may be playing a game of divine subtlety and cunning that would result in financial heads on deck. If this parley is truly a ploy to probe the former governor, then Makinde is a better strategist than he has made the world believe. Whatever the case, the confounding friendship is afoot.