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For Omisore, Fayose and Aregbesola.

LAST week, veteran aspirant, controversial candidate and gubernatorial hopeful, Senator Iyiola Omisore sent me a WhatsApp hint, confirming he's seeking the governor's job, this time on the platform of the rejuvenated Social Democratic Party (SDP). This was after being muscled out of PDP, the party which while in government under Olagunsoye Oyinlola, he was running from Agodi prison while answering for the unresolved murder of Bola Ige, whose memory has now been mummified as campaign meme by his lieutenants.

For them, finding Ige's killers becomes a must when gubernatorial contest is around the corner, especially when Omisore is involved. Ige's memory nestles in the pyramid of Osun politics once election is won and lost. Finding his killers is now every four-year ritual. With Omisore likely to be on the ballot on September 22, this libation will be poured again, except the family ends the sham.

If anyone should receive mountainous credit for forcing Omisore out of his PDP 'fortress,' Ayo Fayose would solely be deserving. Apart from telling me point-blank that the Ife-born engineer was past his gubernatorial-prime, he was certain Senator Ademola Adeleke would be PDP's standard-bearer when the boogie fellow wasn't even nursing the ambition. As the leader of the party in the South-West, Fayose has almost engineered the second prediction into reality but regarding Omisore's political future, he had no power over any man's fate, just like men also failed over his own fate.

Omisore knew of the coup but he was helpless. He was like Shehu Shagari as president, who knew a certain Muhammadu Buhari was baying, but couldn't stop the tsunami. The imagery is that of a man 'running things' one moment and 'chasing things' the next moment. Politicians don't learn, even from their own fall. I go better (incurable optimism) is the golden code.

Despite being ruled by two parties, which want the other dead and buried, Ekiti and Osun have shared umbilical cord. Apart from gubernatorial elections in both states this year, expected to set the tone and tenor for 2019, both sitting governors are buddy buddy, to great discomfort of their party-men. Certainly, Rauf Aregbesola and Fayose's friendship isn't some made-in-heaven bromance. When they contended as political enemies with Rauf, serving as the fixer for Fayose's impeachment in 2014 election, it was politics. When Bourdillion began courting Fayose or the other way round, Osun governor, expectedly became the face of the wole wode (open romance), it is still politics. The popular joke in the axis is 'Fayose is PDP in Ekiti, APC in Osun, Aregbe is APC in Osun and PDP in Ekiti.'

It is an arrangement not strange to the man in Osun. When Bourdillion favourite, Segun Abraham came short of expectation in Ondo, Aregbe dumped party loyalty. In local parlance, it is called, anti-candidate.

So, would anyone blame the Omisore camp for pushing the theory that Fayose is scheming for a weak and easily-beatable PDP candidate in Osun for Aregbe and Bourdillion's APC candidate to have a smooth sail?

Is it not also possible for Omisore's supporters even while still in PDP to extend the anti-candidate opera to Ekiti, in favour of APC candidate against Fayose and PDP's candidiate? With Omisore and his people now without any allegiance to PDP, the moral burden of being Fayose's nemesis in the July 14 election, especially in the border towns, where the electorate do cross-border voting at will, is off their necks.

Nigerian modern politics, I guess, is deliberately played for the path of the leading actors to keep crossing. My main assumption is their desire for politics of the economy and the nation's wealth, unlike the politics of service and goodwill of the past. Political parties are mere ambition-realising platforms, to strengthen the strangulating control on everything. That is why they never disagree on fundamental issues because their relational agenda with the people is everything but fundamental. And as long as you don't rock the boat, as they say, you are never off the bus. And as long as there is something to chop, they are game. That is why a Distinguished Senator will not blink an eye becoming an aide to a colleague who stepped up as a principal officer, simply because he was extinguished in his re-election bid. Yes, the crop around here isn't the worst globally, only that the stomach and primitive acquisition usually override humanitarian considerations.

It won't be right to say Omisore is done with PDP or Fayose. Future exigencies could even put Aregbe in his warm embrace. Aren't Oyinlola and Segun Oni back with those who got them out? So, why should Omisore feel badder (my neologism) if stopped now and embraced in the future for other purposes and considerations.

In fact, before the ink dries on this page, these actors could be fusing again as PDP opened oppositional alliance vista. Name-change is also a possibility, to at least, hide the disfigured umbrella for a while.

Favourable history is on the side of the party of the horse and it should ordinarily swallow the mended but leaky umbrella, if an alliance would be. With only a letter change in acronym, it would seem the former ruling party is just doing the Saul-to-Paul conversion stuff, after seeing the Light. But how lightened and enlightened are now the leading lights of PDP who lit everywhere with darkened politics when in charge and aren't likely to joko jeje (be sober) in the new house, considering their obvious sense of entitlement to the front-row at gatherings, including where they should be completely denied access or be told 'gerrarahia you know what I'm saying' (apologies to Francis Odega).

It is useless pointing the humbling take-aways in this seeming perpendicular anti-candidate war, to others who may want to toe the path of the involved. When it is time for a new political orientation, it is the players themselves that would eke it out and it would have little to do with preachment. Right now, our politics sounds like the science of stupidity, ruling everyone and everywhere.
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Publication:Nigerian Tribune (Oyo State, Nigeria)
Geographic Code:6NIGR
Date:Apr 22, 2018
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