Ekiti:The Fall Of Power Drunk Fayose; A Lesson For Ambode In Lagos, By Adeoba Michaels
The outgoing governor of Ekiti State Peter Ayodele Fayose evoked a large than life image in the minds of many Nigerians. He often roared, ‘I am Peter the rock, you fall on me you break, I fall on you shattered! “.
Yet, a teargas cannister broke the neck and hand of the king of the jungle.Like a Biblical Peter, Fayose, Alias, Peter The Rock,’Wept bitterly’.
The proponent of stomach infrastructure politics came into the nation’ s political consciousness through his uncanny, choreographed populism.
He pretended as a friend of the poor – he jumps on Okada occasionally to deceive the gullible and also treats himself to sumptuous Amala and assorted beef at Iya Selimo local canteen somewhere around Ado, Ekiti State capital.
Fayose touted himself as the chief political principality in Ekiti with ambition to build a political dynasty like the one Bola Tinubu builds in Lagos.
The governor is also the lord of the parks. The transport unions are his allies. The other day, he opened the Government House gate to them for a PDP rally.
When Fayose’s popularity seemed to have reached crescendo, the governor became power drunk.
He called bluff party chieftains and other influential stakeholders bragging he could install his protégé and deputy, Prof Olusola Eleka single-handedly as governor.
‘Dayo Adeyeye can go to hell. What is his electoral value. I am Oshoko, the Irumole’, the egocentric governor must have reasoned.
The morning after, the intoxication of the imaginary unrivaled overlord must have been cleared from the eyes of the man who failed to manage good times well.
How could Fayose had thought that with his party and candidate will sweep the polls when civil servants and pensioners are owed months of salary arrears?
Perhaps, he thought the intellectually sagacious Ekiti people were not aware of the batches of bailout, Paris Club Refund he got from the Federal Government.
He assumed to his peril that his candidate will run on the steam of his bloated popularity while workers’, citizens’ and other stakeholders’ welfare were disregarded. Fayose’s arrogance is similar to that of Governor Akinwunmi Ambode of Lagos.
Just like Fayose thought that the likes of Dayo Adeyeye and other estranged chieftains of the Ekiti PDP are inconsequential, Ambode also believes that certain aggrieved chieftains of the ruling party in Lagos can’t rock his boat.
Fouad Oki, a veteran political and campaign strategist is not a force in Ambode’s reckoning. Ditto, for army of political displaced persons within Lagos APC. Yet, these chieftains have their follows and people within their sphere of influence.
Needless to say that many local government chairmanship aspirants who were shortchanged by the powers that be in Lagos would ofcourse wait for their oppressors at the polls.
Thankfully, INEC, like a ‘Pharaoh that didn’t know Joseph’ will conduct the polls not the kangaroo LASIEC that is anything but independent.
It also smacks of crass arrogance for the governor to have hiked Land Use Charge by 400% and later gave a bonus of 50% which reduced the hike to 200%.
Ambode must have thought like Fayose, what would the people do? I am in charge here! Well, he should learn from Fayose’s inglorious fall.
It is the same arrogance of power and what would people do attitude that must have made Governor Ambode to disband over 25,000 workers of waste managers in Lagos.
He arrogantly brought an acclaimed foreign waste manager, Visionscape to take over the jobs of locals.
The gallant failure of Visionscape and the billions the fraudulent enterprise was used to siphon will definitely be a campaign issue during electioneering.
The borehole drilling permit of about N75,000 slammed on residents is another case Ambode’s cheer arrogance of power.
The government temporarily suspended the enforcement when enraged Lagosians called for the governor’s head.
How could Ambode expect votes from people he failed to provide water for yet tax them for providing alternative source of water. That is cruelty!
The tax overdrive of Ambode even when the nation was groaning under the burden of recession was an indication that his government believed with or without people, he will win.
It is preposterous that the first thing Ambode could reason after the unfortunate Otedola Bridge Tanker explosion was how to exploit the tragedy to drive revenues.
He ordered that tankers coming into Lagos to get Lagos Ministry of Transport road worthiness clearance which obviously won’t come cheap.
Meanwhile, his predecessor, Babatunde Raji Fashola had whipped the reckless tanker drivers to line. He ordered them to move only between 10pm – 6am. But Ambode thought otherwise, he said there would henceforth be a tanker route.
The question is – how would that avert tragedies on the roads. Is tanker route another BRT lane?
There is much sense in the Fashola solution to tanker menace. Tankers will free the roads in the day making traffic light.
And when tanker falls off at night, the casualty is also minimal if any because the roads are free. Also, there is little probability that the content will explode because the temperature is cold at night.
Ambode will be living in a fool’s paradise if he thinks power can’t change hands in Lagos like it happened in Ekiti yesterday. The signs are obvious. Change is not impossible in Lagos.
Adeoba Michaels, a Political Analyst writes from Lagos