•Over Choice Of Cabinet Members
In the political arena of Ogun State today, the news and song on everyone’s lips is when is Governor Dapo Abiodun going to name the commissioners who will take charge of the ministries. This is why people are eagerly waiting for those who will make the list and those who won’t. The expectations is high from the different camps who stood by the Governor and contributed to the success of the election that saw Dapo Abiodun emerge as the governor few months ago.
The governor on the other hand is being careful and at the same time selective, this explains why it is taking him longer than expected before rolling out names in order not to cause chaos in the party.
Recall that, selecting kitchen cabinet was what led to the first fight between former governor Amosun and Prince Olusegun Osoba in 2011. Osoba who played a huge role in helping Amosun actuliase his dreams of becoming Ogun Governor was totally shut out of the government. Those who worked for Amosun through Osoba and were expecting to be named commissioners and SSA were also deserted, which led to an unending rift between Amosun and Osoba. This is one of the reasons Governor Dapo Abiodun is being careful.
It’s a different ball game for Governor Abiodun this time around because he has many benefactors whom he can not neglect their interest when it comes to kitchen cabinets, considering the fact that they all played huge roles right from when the primary election was held and during the election.
Governor Abiodun shares a very close relationship with Vice president Osinbajo who happens to also be from Ijebu where Dapo Abiodun hails from. His support can not be ignored and sure on the list according to inside source has numbers of candidates whom he wishes to be appointed as commissioners.
Aremo Olusegun Osoba on the other side is the political God father of Ogun State and governor Abiodun holds him in high esteem and considering what transpired between Osoba and Amosun, the new Governor is not willing to endanger the relationship between him and Aremo. This is why the names of Osoba’s people will also be given first priority.
Although Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu is not from Ogun State, but he stood firmly for Dapo Abiodun. They both share a strong bond, and won’t let anything come between them, another reason why he will consider his choice of people on the list.
Senator Olamilekan Adeola otherwise known as Yayi when leaving the state to go and re-contest in Lagos left a strong force of his followers and supporters to Dapo Abiodun and they all worked effortlessly to ensure the mandate was actualized. It’s no wonder when Governor Abiodun named his key SSA few weeks ago, more than three of those who came from Yayi’s camp were on the list.
Governor Abiodun has promised to run an inclusive government. This was obvious while naming the transition committee which has two gubernatorial candidates on the list, some of these candidates are said to have dropped the names of those who they want to be on the cabinet too.
Not forgetting that the governor has his own personal list of those he can trust and wants to work with.
All these factors are hindering the governor from naming his kitchen cabinets.
On Thursday, July 4, 2019, the Governor wrote the State House of Assembly requesting for appointment deferment of commissioners in favour of senior special advisers and special advisers.
It was learnt that the Governor settled for the appointment of his kitchen cabinet, having considered the economic reality in the state. The state of Ogun economy requires careful management of resources. This dawned on him after he settled down to peruse the books, in order to manage the resources.
Recall that just two days after he resumed office, he said he took a loan of N7b to pay workers’ May salary and other financial obligations of the state, which still fell short of N9.1 state monthly wage bill as claimed by immediate past governor, Ibikunle Amosun.
It was learnt from impeccable sources within the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the state that one of the Governor’s unexpressed decision for the deferment was not unconnected to advise of a chieftain of the party, who counseled him to adopt ‘Aregbesola style’ of Osun State, where the state was run without commissioners for years.
Another reason, according to findings from reliable sources is that the Governor is currently in a dilemma with the list of candidates before him. Inside source reveals that the commissioners’ list on ground, comprising of his candidates and those from Osinbajo, Tinubu, Osoba, Senator Solomon Adeola (Yayi) and other chieftains of the party, is far beyond the existing number of ministries in the state.
“Currently, there are 18 ministries, but two new ones are being carved out to make it 20. The list on ground now, submitted by stakeholders who contributed immensely to the Governor’s emergence in the face of stiff opposition during the primaries and general elections is enormous. But the Governor is treading cautiously pertaining to the list, to avoid whatever may lead to acrimony between him and his benefactors.
Another source who confirmed the development also cited the case of Ewekoro Local Government, where names of two nominees have already been submitted and ‘confirmed’, contrary to the rule of one candidate per council area. Names of two nominees have already been submitted and ‘confirmed’, contrary to the rule of one candidate per council area.
“The names were submitted by two different chieftains of the party from the area and both have been assured of appointments. So, how do we expect the Governor to do it? He needs to tread cautiously in this early period of his administration, to avoid pitfalls.” Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the state, Hon. Sikirulai Ogundele, who confirmed the development, to Guardian newspaper said the Governor is no doubt in a confused state.