This is the story an accomplished man who has done well for himself. He is a former federal legislator, hotelier, writer, producer, actor and one-time senior staff of NNPC (Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation), who is the Chief Executive Officer of Oodua fm.It’s his birthday and Citypeople got him to speak on pertinent issues.
Honourable Rotimi Makinde, one of the early lieutenants of Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola, former governor of Osun State and the current Minister of Interior, spoke on a number of issues and his relationship with Senator Iyiola Omisore.
Can we have a peep into your background?
I was born and brought up in Ile-Ife before the civil war. I grew up in Ile-Ife where I attended Ansarudeen Primary School, Ile-Ife. I started my secondary school education at Okuu-Omoni Grammar School also in Ile-Ife. Later, I continued my education at the Government Teachers’ College in Sokoto State. After my secondary school education, I gained admission into the Sokoto State Polytechnic now Waziri Ibrahim Polytechnic located in Kebbi State where I studied Accounting and obtained a National Diploma certificate. I did my Industrial Training (IT) at the National Bank, Marina, Lagos after which I proceeded for my Higher National Diploma (HND) at the Kwara State Polytechnic, Ilorin, Kwara State. I served at the NNPC and was later retained as a staff where I worked for 20 years before I resigned willingly in 2006. I had my Post-graduate diploma (PGD) at the prestigious Ladoke Akintola University of Technology (LAUTECH), Ogbomoso, Oyo State and I also had my MBA certificate in finance at the prestigious LAUTECH. I hope to become a lawyer very soon. I ventured into automobile sales business even as a staff of the NNPC and I also have three hospitality businesses to my credit namely; Glorious Day Hotel, Iyana-Ipaja Lagos and Capriconian Hotels, Ajuwon -Alagbole, Lagos and in the most recent, Skylounge and Suites, along Ojodu-Berger road, Lagos.
How did you venture into politics?
First and foremost, if touching of lives, being vocal,unionist as a pengassan executive,students leader and defending interests of the few and helpless, speaking, writing against powers of captives and agitating for the rights of the people can be described as politics; it means that I have been a politician from birth.
I ran into Ogbeni Rauf Adesoji Aremu Aregbesola in 2005 while still in active service of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC). I discovered him as a person who has genuine intention to champion the cause of good governance. I interviewed and questioned his decision to create a movement for positive change and as a person who is not satisfied with the present state of Nigeria most especially Osun State as at then, I joined Oranmiyan Movement in 2005 and I have been an active participant to date. In 2006, I voluntarily resigned from the NNPC and offered myself to contest and represent my community as a senator. I have never been a member of any party apart from the progressives. I contested for the senate at the party level but the party in its wise decision asked me to contest for the House of Representatives as a candidate of the defunct Action Congress of Nigeria in 2007. All the candidates under our party were cheated in the 2007 elections in which we all went to court before the party in its wise decision asked us to step down our charges and face the gubernatorial election court charges.
Are you close to the incumbent governor of the state?
Yes, we are close and I appreciate him for all what he’s doing for the state especially the workers.
What can you say about his performance in office so far?
He is a great personality, very amiable and he is recording success and making us proud. He is my in-law and mind you, I am still serving as a commissioner in the Osun State Judicial Service Commission.
Is it true that you are now very close to Senator Iyiola Omisore?
Yes. He is a brother; he has come back to the progessive family. Senator Omisore is a leader in Ile- Ife and Osun State at large. Although, there was a time things were rough between us but everything is fine now and we are moving ahead.
If you had been in Senator Iyiola Omisore’s camp years back, would you still be in the National Assembly?
Probably but God knows how He keeps his own for a reason. I may still be in the NASS by now and I guess he too would find it difficult not to keep supporting me in Ile-Ife as a politician with my fervent desire to serve diligently.
Dr Christopher Omisore knows what it takes to be a ranking person in the house and the advantages inherent in it for one’s community. Besides, I would have made him proud as an Ife representative in all fronts. That we had not been on the same page in politics exposed me to a lot of unnecessary risk, dangers and risks in my community because he is deeply loved by the Ife people; they hold him in high esteem and many see anyone who’s not in his camp as an enemy.
Have you both forgotten your past?
Of course yes! You can’t forget the past,you can only forgive on the past. Be Sure of that,This life doesn’t worth prolonged malice .I am now on the same page with him. The moment he re-joined the progressives,I got closer and we both see each other from another perspective, he is such a bundle of talent ,very generous and I must confess, he actually sacrificed greatly for the emergence of my inlaw, Governor Adegboyega Oyetola. We both can’t but to forget the past and bonded to hold Ife together politically and as one united family that we are.
With our unity,ife stands better politically.
So how do you feel about it all ?
Honestly, I feel we both went too far and got too fanatical about our political principles and convictions. We were both carried away by political sentiments but with my slightest exposure in the NASS and maturity in age and politics made me learn and never to dabble into too many sensitive political matters or meddle into any big men issues both in politics and in my social life.Today, I am now better equipped though I am still learning . I hold my political party loyalty and utmost respect to all my leaders regardless of their political affiliation.
Failure is the condiment that gives success its flavour. The purpose of life is to live it, to taste experience to the utmost, to reach out eagerly and without fear for newer and richer experience. God can never be faulted for his intervention on numbers of happenings in our life. Is it not beyond human comprehension that we are now on the same page with serious determination to move our state and kingdom forward,With peace and unity between we sons and daughters of ile ife which of course cut accross those in other towns around us and the opposition .Ife federal constituency stands better.I was born because of ife?
How do you intend to celebrate your birthday of every January 3rd this new year?
As usual and in view of the dreaded coronavirus pandemic ravaging our society, I would like to reach out to all my family, friends and fans to stay put wherever they are to join me in appreciating my creator as I wish them all a happy new year.
Great pleasure meeting you .
I thank you