One of Nigeria’s most articulate and versatile youths, a Gubernatorial aspirant and a member of board of the Oil and Gas Free Zones Authority (OGFZA), Engineer Temitope Stephen Kuyebi has emerged from the Imasayi area of Ogun West Senatorial district, saying he has all it takes to be the said ‘wizkid’ who will sail the ship of progress after the incumbent Governor, Senator Ibikunle Amosun.
The All Progressive Congress, APC candidate, made this known in Ilaro, Yewa South local government, while declaring his intention to run for the highest political office in the state to party leaders in Ogun West Senatorial district.
It would be recalled that the Governor, Senator Ibikunle Amosun had hinted that he would hand over the mantle of leadership of the state to “a wizkid” during press conference in Abeokuta.
Engineer Kuyebi who traced his political career from the active days of the Alliance for Democracy (AD) to Action Congress (AC) then, Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) and later to All Progressives Congress (APC) he remained a progressive and loyal to the party leadership especially the current Governor, Senator Ibikunle Amosun.
He stated that he was the first consensus candidate that was unanimously presented to contest for the governorship position by the entire people of Ogun west in the buildup of the 2011 general election, but despite the unanimous endorsement, his party leaders prevailed on him to step down for the incumbent Governor due to his age and experience in politics.
Kuyebi who said he was only 35 years at that time, said he obliged, collapsed his structure and work for the emergence of the Governor, not minding other aspirants who left the party and those who want him to also pitch his tent elsewhere.
He confirmed that out of all the eleven aspirants at that time, he remains the only one that has not left the party and that has been consistent in supporting the position of the leaders and the Governor in ensuring that the party remains in power at all levels.
Narrating his political journey further, Kuyebi said he contested for the Senatorial seat during the 2015 general elections in Ogun state but was asked to step down for another elderly person, Senator Gbolahan Dada who is presently representing Ogun West at the Red Chamber of the National Assembly.
He however said he believes that the time is now for him to pilot the affairs of state, adding that he will consolidate on the achievements of Governor Ibikunle Amosun in ensuring that Ogun State remains at the top among the committee of states in the country.
When asked of the reason behind his continuous trust in the party, even after being denied both the Governorship and Senatorial tickets, he said, he believes in loyalty and especially in the leadership style of the sitting Governor.
His words, ” Like I said, I respect the leadership style of our Governor and I believe in the words of our leaders and now that the Governor has come out to say it is time for a younger person from Ogun West and it is a wizkid, I am certain that I perfectly fit the description . I believe that it is God that chose me, whizkid is someone who is highly intelligent, someone with a clear vision, someone with a clear goal and when I was telling you about myself, I told you that in my career, I started with the Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC) and till this moment, I have been in Oil and Gas.
“I want you to know that when talking about Oil and Gas, I am in the mainstream, where I have been privileged to have both local and the international training and its my prayers that God should grant me favour in the struggles.
“Looking at where we are coming from, I am perfectly the right person, and I believe this is my time, looking at my persistence and sincerity to the leaders of the party, because it is not easy to contest in 2011 and they said go and sit down again i contested in 2015 they said go and sit down yet you still believe your time will come, these are great attitudes of good compatriots and I know my time has come.
“I am just 43 years old and I have learnt a lot in politics, I have toured the 20 local government before, knowing all party leaders and giving honour to whom it is due in the party irrespective of the zone. Sincerely, it has not been easy, but I know that I was learning through the whole period and I am fully ready for the task ahead.
“You said some people will not know that I have been long in Politics and that they will think I am a new entrant, well, I am not just a new intake into politics and in fact, I was active during the days of one of our leaders, Engineer Wale Bajomo of Blessed memory who pulled all of us together then as Yewa elites and made us understand that we must fight for our land, he also said that if we all pull back who will then liberate us, but during the struggle we lost him may his soul rest in perfect peace.
“After that time, a team of progressives minded prominent sons and daughters of Ogun west came together and said who will go for us, since Engneer wale is no more, somebody has to lead the team, the vision for Ogun west liberation must not be buried like that.
“After due consultation I discovered I have all what it takes to give it a shot though at a tender age, I was just 35 then towards 2011 , so I was very young but I called people together and we started in 2008 .
“I started the grassroots mobilization from Temitope Kuyemi foundation and as at 2009 I called the first leaders meeting, where I unveiled my intention of wanting to give the race a trial.
“That was a period when nobody will look at you because, the then incumbent Governor Gbenga Daniel wanted to have a successor, but the vision was clear and what we started then metamorphosed, and everybody began to clamour that the Yewa/Awori should be given a chance.
“Consequently, I declared for the gubernatorial race in 2011, we started all we could do then, I remembered one thing that happened in the history of Ogun west, we have never had it so good then because we are always in disagreement among ourselves, as a result, Chief Olusegun Osoba called leaders in Ogun west to a meeting requesting that we should unanimously present one candidate.
“After that request we started the campaign, we held series of meetings within Ogun west and to God be the glory, shadow election was conducted at Ado-odo Ota at Chief Roqib Adeniji’s house, where I won convincingly.
“The leaders took me to Chief Olusegun Osoba’s house at Ikoyi, bourdillon where all the leaders prayed for me telling me that I should commence the campaign to the 20 local governments in the state, and that was 2010.
“By the grace of God I proceeded with the campaign to the 20 local government areas in the state, we did it fantastically well but, in series of meetings in Lagos state under the leadership of Chief Bisi Akande, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu among other leaders in Southwest even baba, the former Governor of Oyo state, Lam Adeshina was still alive then; they were all at the meeting and at the end of the meeting, Senator Ibikunle Amosun got the endorsement to lead as the gubernatorial candidate of the party.
“We keyed in, to deliver the state for our party, other governorship aspirants left the party but I remained and with the supports of my followers we delivered the local government, constituencies, senatorial district, wards and even our units.”
“So, at present, I see myself as a ready made candidate, highly experienced, young, bold, courageous, respective, loyal, intelligent, sellable and God fearing”