Ismail Adewoyin an indigene of Saki is the convener of Oke Ogun Project Forum, in this interview he spoke on the agenda of the forum and why they want Oke Ogun Indigene to be the next governor of Oyo state.
Sir you are the convener of Oke Ogun project forum, can you enlighten us what the project is all about
Oke Ogun project forum is a group of professionals mainly from the Oke Ogun as their origin so in May 2015 immediately after the election to be precise, the result of the election shows that Oke Ogun can speak with one voice, we now look at the general problem being encountered by all towns and villages and we gathered together to see that if the last 22 years of existence of new Oyo state after Osun state has pulled out of Oyo state why can’t an Oke Ogun indigene become the next governor basically , its is a pressure group I am not a politician but as a professional when your community has lifted you up you should be able to give back to the community that shape your elementary so what we are doing is like a community service we want to see that Oke Ogun man becomes the next governor of the state
But in terms of Population, Oke Ogun did not on the same level with Ibadan, how will it be possible for a man from that region to be governor ?
You see, the issue is not between Oke Ogun and Ibadan, the state belong to all of us even an area or a zone or a settlement with the least population are still entitle to be governor of the state so its not a matter of Ibadan and Oke Ogun and if you talked interm of population, after Ibadan with eleven local governments Oke Ogun is the next with ten Local governments followed by Ogbomoso , Oyo and Ibarapa
Why don’t you people think about facilitating development for Oke Ogun rather that political agitation to produce the next governor, some people are of the opinion that its not until you have a governor from that zone before it can be developed
You see in Nigeria development has been attached to power play, if you have someone at the top he can facilitate anything, we have examples abound, how top people in top places have brought development into their region but in Oyo state , Ibadan people, I don’t want to talk about them but to be very sincere, they have been at the help of affairs since the return of Democracy and you can see that all the resources coming to Oyo state virtually about 80 percent of it is been spent on development of Ibadan , the development is not evenly distributed
And you are optimistic that having Oke Ogun person as the governor will bring development faster to the region
There are certain Natural resources that can spring up development, for instance, Oke Ogun account for over 60 percent of landmass in Oyo state, so how can an agro allied company base in Ibadan will now have farms in Oke Ogun, why can’t their offices be located in Oke Ogun where the raw materials are coming from.
Don’t you think that is the problem of the people in Oke Ogun
The Oke Ogun people are very peaceful and honest
Oke Ogun is rich in both human and natural resources but backward in terms of development, now you are agitating for a governor of Oyo state from the region, what are your expectation
The most important thing for whoever that becomes governor is that he must be an honest man, an average Oke Ogun man is honest and can be trusted because they are people with fear of God so a man with fear of God will distribute development evenly, he is not given to tribalism or ethnic mentality
In APC we have about 9 people from Oke Ogun jostling to be governor of the state and we still going to have people from other party, what method are you going to employ in ensuring that a candidate that will be loved and supported emerges because you can choose for the party
We are not politician, the party will choose, but I am sure this our agitation will help whoever will emerge out of the aspirants jostling for the position
What if the ruling party did not choose from Oke Ogun
APC is not the only party in Oyo state, we have the PDP, some of our indigenes will surely come up as Aspirants in PDP, ACCORD and others, we already have some others that have even contested under APP before as governorship aspirant and I am even aware that he is also preparing now to contest again under the same party, so as the time is drawing nearer a lot of other contestant will come up from other party
Are you looking at organizing a kind of debate or screening for anybody who want to contest for governorship from that region
That may not be necessary, we don’t need to organize a debate for them
Now that we don’t have an indigene as the governor of the state what is the region missing
Well , like I said earlier, its about development and having our people in key post, we have been relegated to playing second fiddle, in this state we have produced the highest number of deputy governor and, you know deputy governor is like an extra tyre.
But if you have an Oke Ogun idegene as a governor now is he going to be practicing favoritism for the oke ogun people
No its not like that, I know if an oke Ogun man become the next governor of Oyo state, first zone that will benefit zone is Ibadan and the people residing in Ibadan because an average Oke Ogun man, like I said is an honest person, and I know an Oke Ogun man will distribute development , appointments evenly and with honestly
Some people believe that politics is a game of number and for a zone to be agitating that its their turn is a kind of inferiority complex because nobody is saying that you cannot contest, why is the emphasis on “our turn now”
Because we have be marginalized, its glaring, Ibadan people has about 52 % of voting population, out of the 52 % population, I can assure you that outsiders, people from other towns other state account for 60% of that 52 % so the typical Ibadan indigenes their voting population is less than 20%
So are you mobilizing the Oke Ogun people in the diaspora to be prepared for the journey?
We have been doing that, Oke Ogun project forum have our representatives everywhere, we call them Oke Ogun Ambassadors, we have them in the 36 state of the federation including the FCT , we also have them in the diasporas, we have coordinators, in UK, US and others
What are your relationships with other Oke Ogun groups
Well, we have been working have been working hand in hand, you see the beauty of it is that Oke Ogun project forum, Oke Ogun Development Council, council of Oke Ogun indiegenes and others we have all united including the Obas and we have one single aim which is , Oke Ogun person must become the next governor of the state , the asa that are in the council of Oke Ogun traditional rulers even those that are not even participating, we have been to their meeting and we have visited those that are not members of the council individually and all of them are speaking with single voice that it is high time an Oke Ogun man becomes the next governor
Sir don’t you think there will be power play at the end of the day
Well, we cannot rule that out, all I know is that this is our turn and God on our side, we shall surely get it
Tell us a bit about your persons and other members of the group
Like I said Oke Ogun project forum we are groups of professions mainly from Oke Ogun, I am a registered estate surveyors, we have among us accountant, Lawyers, Pharmacists and other professionals as members
So what is your message for Oke Ogun people
Since we have stated that our goal is to ensure Oke Ogun man become the next governor of Oyo state, people should give us the support, the trial and I know that they well be happy at the end of the day
Sir, is any of your member interested in the governorship position
To the best of my knowledge, none yet .