The ancient city of Ibadan is atavistically known with a particular touchy trait, that is the ability to evoke the spirit of public disturbances, anyone that remembers the popular Wetie Crisis in the 1960s’ Western Region would know how hard it could be to maintain order in Ibadan whenever the people have a cause to go on rampage.
The rage across the country in the past few weeks in the name of EndSars took all the entire onlookers aback, nobody expected that the so called “Indomie” generation would ever grown a gut to face the men with amory without shivering. The waves of eruptions migrated across the country while leaders at various layers adopt different approaches to stair through.
Oyo State had it’s own fair share of the national hullabaloo, starting from the confrontation between the youths and security agents in Ogbomoso to the uproar erupted in the ancient city of Ibadan, but amidst the whole pandemonium, Governor Seyi Makinde showed acute dexterity and prudence as a good manager of crisis.
The Covid19 Pandemic crisis came earlier in the year and laid a precedence, while other states were thrown into total confusion, Governor Seyi Makinde as a prudent leader took some bold steps that placed him ahead of his contemporaries. First of all, he refused the 24 hours total lockdown that became the norms in all other states on the ground that how would people survive the hunger that comes with the lockdown, secondly, he opened schools while other states were still swimming in pool of indecisiveness. GSM templates were later adopted by other states and Federal Government.
The uproar that came with the end police brutality protest took ugly faces as the youths expressed their General frustration in a violent manner, South Western Region became the epicenter of the whole kerfuffle. In it usual forms, violence in South West is most prominent in Lagos and Oyo State, but while the violence engulfed Lagos State probably because of poor management of crisis, reverse was the case in Oyo State as Governor Seyi Makinde dexterously calmed the tension and brought normalcy to the State.
GSM refused to toe the path of other States that declared total curfew, he allowed other activities to be moving simultaneously with the protest activities, he also ordered that police shouldn’t be seen near the place of protests, rather, Operation Burst should be guiding the protest to prevent it from being hijacked by bellicose elements among the youths.
At the heat of the protests when the rage among the youths increased and there were tendencies that the situation if not properly managed could degenerate into huge crisis in Ibadan, Governor Seyi Makinde walked to the midst of the protesters to show solidarity and covered some miles while matching with them. Unlike what we witnessed in the neighboring state where a Governor and his entourages were brutally attacked and bullied by angry mobs, Seyi Makinde was cheered and welcomed by Oyo Youths.
In all these, it is obvious that Seyi Makinde is not only a good manager of human and financial resources, experience has shown us that Makinde is a professor of crisis management with street credibility.
Ogunwoye Samson Gbemiga
Ogbomoso, Oyo State.