What Does Fayose Want? | Independent Newspapers Limited
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What Does Fayose Want?

Posted: Mar 16, 2016 at 1:57 am   /   by   /   comments (0)

Bola Bolawole

turnpot@gmail.com 0807 552 5533

Governor Ayodele Fayose of Ekiti state is an enigma and enfant terrible. He is loquacious, audacious, vexatious, and irascible. He is a man of many controversies. In the popular Yoruba saying, he is a man you must not meet but who, unfortunately, you cannot avoid; this is the proverbial “oniyangi” (someone carrying sand on his head) that the man carrying a pot of palm oil must do all things possible to avoid. In his first stint as governor, it was controversy all the way: How he emerged as candidate was controversial; no less so how he became governor. In office, it was one controversy after another: Whether he slapped the deputy governor and seized her phone; whether he stripped some Obas; his poultry project of controversy was said by then President Olusegun Obasanjo, himself an accomplished poultry farmer, as one of the wonders of the modern world; and controversies still trail his stewardship as governor – whether or not he stole Ekiti blind. He has a date with the EFCC in the law courts.

Fayose’s second coming, as governor has been no less controversial. Before then, his defection from one party to another had all been trailed by controversies – from PDP to Labour to AC and back to PDP. How he won the PDP primaries over and above the head of the poll’s favourite, Dayo Adeyeye, is controversial. How he went on to “trounce” incumbent governor Fayemi remains controversial. Nigerians will not forget in a hurry how Fayose’s aircraft overshot the tarmac in his truculent opposition to Muhammadu Buhari’s presidential ambition on the APC ticket.

Fayose did his best to stop Nigerians voting Buhari into office. He said the man was sick and would not last the distance. He said he trailed and traced him to a hospital in London. He said the man, at 73, was senile; he went even to the ridiculous extent of mimicking how his own mother and Buhari’s age-mate, at 74, wastes precious time to “boot” like Pentium 1 computer! He said Buhari was analogue whereas the modern age is digital. Ultimately, Nigerians saw through his blackmail; rejected his unsolicited-for advice and voted Buhari into office. Once Fayose saw this, he was the first PDP notable, after the then weather-beaten President Goodluck Jonathan, to congratulate Buhari and declare his loyalty! He said politics was over with the election and governance must begin apace. But not for long! Fayose soon returned to the Bastilles, as it were, harassing the new president and buffeting him on all sides. He has cried more than the bereaved and been more Catholic than the Pope. Fayose is not the PDP chairman or any other ranking PDP official but he is better known than any of these in his “defence” of the fallen party. He has become the voice, mouth-piece, spokesperson, defender, and conscience of the party, all rolled into one. In this, he has pushed aside Governor Segun Mimiko of Ondo State, who is the official chairperson of PDP governors. He has also torpedoed Olisa Metuh, the National Publicity Secretary of the PDP. Fayose has successfully installed himself a one-man Riot Squad, waging the battles of PDP on all fronts. His state is cash-strapped and does not even command 10 percent of the resources of some PDP states like Delta, Akwa Ibom, Bayelsa, and Rivers; yet, Fayose committed so much resources of his state in provocative advertisements lambasting Buhari \APC.

But what does Fayose want? A man cannot take up all of these troubles for nothing. To be sure, Fayose is smart, damn smart. He is cold-blooded and rigorously calculating. He cannot, therefore, be on charity. According to some reports, the prophets who prophesied his return to office also prophesied he might not last his term. To last his term was why he chased out the majority Ekiti state legislators for fear they could impeach him. To last his term is why, when Buhari\APC spurned his hands of fellowship, he chose to fight to the finish. It is a fight for survival but couched in the esoteric language of defence of democratic ethos and the rights\freedom\liberties of citizens. With the mountains of problems that Fayose faces, the only way he can survive his second stint is, if he diverts attention from himself to an outside enemy. That way, he can always rally Ekiti behind himself to face the external foes.