In the battle to save the soul of the good people of Ondo State from mediocrity and government of self-centeredness, a saint-like man showed up on the scene. In the garment of the kind with the proposition of undue care for everyone, Mimiko walked into the battle ground.
An all ending war was brewing – a dedicated people on one part (fighting for true governance devoid of petty politicking) and a government that her kitchen’s cabinet was holding the people on her jugular on the other hand. A battle that once won, the people will move to the next level of their lives without fear of failing again.
They needed a messiah, a true servant from amongst them, one who had been in their shoes right “in front of them”. A grass rooter, a politician with an understanding of their psyche, built from the same fabric they were made from. A genuine fighter and lover, who will lead them in battle against the forces of poverty, oppression and tyranny and who will show love all through their battle that seems unending.
This yearning and demand, Mimiko was aware of and promised to deliver them on the all-inclusive platform of Labour Party – the party the people of Ondo Statewere made to believe belongs solely to them.
The platform where individuals committed their non-existent savings into bringing a government on board. They strived hard, trusted, showed love and gave all they could in truth, for the enthronement of the government that seems like answered prayers.
People on the other side shouted that it sounded too good to be true, others said Mimiko is just like everyone else – a liar and a political prostitute shrouded in deceit. Many others, amongst which were his kinsmen said the Iroko looms larger than life and will kill off others. Nobody listened; those that did were either in government or have access to the members of the kitchen cabinet of the then government.
The people have made up their minds and no going back. Whatever you say at this time or whatever they agreed to was just for the justification of what they believed.
The movement was huge, it compared to none. The love was overwhelming; it is now going away from politics into a way of life. A reason to belief. A cause to fight and a reason to stay true to the call. It was the unintended orange revolution, the installation of a new order. The people are now in control of their destinies. They (the people) are winning.
At his campaign flag off that was held at the Akure City Hall because the sitting governor didn’t give the permission to use the stadium, AbdulRahman Abayomi Mimiko wept when he saw the crowd cheering him on. He couldn’t believe it. Less than 6 months (not up to that though), the LP had gained traction and isn’t losing any ground – with no signs of slowing down.
This and many activities before the election showed that when the people are mobilized for a genuine cause, they would give all they could all ina bid to create a better environment for everyone to thrive.
The movement was sincere and the support – unflinching. This goodwill, Mimiko rode on during the election and the tiring court tussle for the people’s mandate. It was never MImiko’s. It was from the people and only for them. This goodwill, a result of collectivism preached at a point most needed, is what Mimiko threw back in their faces without remorse.
During the first 12 months of the Mimiko’s era, the people had divided into various irreconcilable groups. He was providing bus shelters (with no bus to use them), Mother and Child hospital (that discharges her patients 4 hours after birth regardless of your condition). He was building beautiful model schools in centralized locations thereby killing neighborhood schools and primary education. These colourful projects went on glamorously but with more damages beneath them.
Gradually, Mimiko was giving the people 1 and taking 9 from them. He understood their psyche and he used it well to his advantage. Provided neighborhood market for the people of Iju-Itaogbolu (rather than provide access roads to their farms). Themarket they have refused to use (just like every other farming community in the state). He was made from the same fabric from them, so he knew if they see Shoprite, it will make them feel like they are already competing with Lagos State, yet threw away the only advantage Ondo State had, the Olokola FTZ, just for his selfish reasons. This flagrant abuse of the people was too much to bear.
The Iroko-Gbasibe that people gave their lives for his struggle, willfully, 8 years ago have now turned against him. He has pulverized and impoverished the people by withholding the reward for their sweats.
Olusegun Mimiko who promised to work for the people has only made them work for him, his families and their pockets. He has fallen from grace- the reason the people rallied round him in the past, into disgrace, as seen by the outright rejection of his protégé, a clear show of his classic leadership failure.
Going to the polls, it is imperative to urge the people of Ondo State (and Nigerians) that the true quality of a man is not in how well he says it but how well he does it. How do we know this prior to the D-Day? Looking objectively at the antecedents of the applicants is important. We ask again, is this enough?
Without mincing words, we must note that like every choice we make, there would be consequences. What is important is are we prepared to live by it?
You have seen and heard of their plans, you have been told of their past and it is time to determine who manages your future. Be guided and be ready.
Abayomi Sarumi, (@AATSarumi), is the curator of AATSarumi.com