Governor Oluwarotimi Odunayo Akeredolu, SAN, CON has been battling with a deadly cancer of the blood for about two years now, undergoing critical clinical operations and surgery to stay alive.
In the build-up to the last General Elections, the health conditions of the Governor assumed a very dangerous trend that immediately threw the people of the State into prayer mode, as the last option to seek divine intervention after several medical trials in the best German hospital.
When the Owo-born legal practitioner turned politician is battling with his life, his closest family members (wife and son) whose position as Governor for six years has greatly impacted their lives and societal status were busy going around siphoning money here and there.
When the Governor was away in December 2022 on one of the medical trips to Germany, his wife and first lady of Ondo State, Ada Owere 1, was busy organising FOWOSO where she hosted dignitaries from all walks of life to a lavish dinner party at The Dome International Event Centre, Akure.
As an attendee of the event, my first observation was the arrival of Mrs. Betty Anyanwu-Akeredolu to the event in the full entourage and compliment of the Executive Governor of Ondo State. I almost took her arrival as that of the Governor until she stepped out majestically as a bride from the black Toyota SUV meant as the official vehicle of the Governor.
At the FOWOSO dinner party that night, Mama FOWOSO vigorously engaged in the business of ranking in several millions of naira from the dignitaries which included the first lady of Lagos State, representative of River State Governor, Senator Dr. Jimoh Ibrahim, CFR, Hon. Prince Okunjimi Odimayo, MHR for Okitipupa/Irele Federal Constituency, Hon. Bunmi Tunji- Ojo, All Progressives Congress, APC candidates in the last February 25, 2023, National Assembly Election, chairmen of the 18 Council Areas and their wives and all female appointees in the Rotimi Akeredolu led Ondo State Government.
What baffled me most was the seriousness of Ada Owere 1 although the money-making event without reminding her guests to pray for her husband’s quick recovery even for a few minutes. If Ada Owere 1 couldn’t pray for Akeredolu, who is mine to do so, and what will be the effect of my prayer for Akeredolu? I need a warehouse of loads of prayer for myself and my family. No sycophantic for me, please.
It got me worried when I read on several social media platforms, urging prayer sessions for the Governor when Akeredolu bloodlines are busy en-mass wealth and seeking Federal political patronage from President Bola Tinubu. How will you describe the situation where Akeredolu’s son and director-general of PPMU ran to Abuja last week to meet President Tinubu with the help of Senator Dr. Jimoh Ibrahim, CFR who took Babajide along with his son, Seun to meet the President?
If Babajide must realise that he is nothing and empty without the influence of his father, the young man should have used his energy and time, going from one church to another mountaintop to pray for Akeredolu’s quick recovery. If Babajide could leave his dad’s sick bedside to seek Tinubu’s favour for possibly a Federal appointment, why will I be the one to pray on his behalf for his father’s health when my children are expecting me to get good appointments to give them better living conditions? I am praying to God to better my life like the Akeredolus.
As if Babajide’s Abuja enterprise was not enough, the mother too is busy now preparing and as usual, ranking in millions of naira she loves doing in the pretence of celebrating her seventy years birthday in July at this critical period when Akeredolu’s health is deteriorating. What a people!
Where are the rest members of Akeredolu’s family in all these? What is/are their role in restoring hope to the head of the family? Oluwarotimi Akeredolu is first a son and member of the Akeredolu family before being an Owo man, an Ondo State indigene and a Nigerian citizen. The family members are the ones enjoying his wealth, fame and power and influence that came with his position as Governor of Ondo State, so they should be in the lead to seeking healing, support, help and care for the ailing Akeredolu.
All of us witnessed the drama put up by Mrs. Betty Anyanwu-Akeredolu the last time an Akure Princess and aide to the Governor, Mrs. Bunmi Ademosun effort to lend a helping hand to get an alternative remedy to Akeredolu’s ailment, but backfired and scandalised. Mama Igbo said it emphatically that her husband needs no help or our prayers since he is attended to by the best specialists and medical team in Germany. Period.
For me, the recent action of civil servants in the Ondo State Public Service, gathering to pray to God for the quick recovery of Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, SAN, CON, is baseless and sycophantic. Since the Governor has yielded to the demand of the people and the dictate of the Nigeria Constitution by commencing medical leave on the 7th of June, 2023 to attend to his health issue, and has handed over the affairs of the state to his Deputy, Hon. Lucky Orimisan Aiyedatiwa; let everyone face his or her duties and put the State back on developmental stride. That is my take for now!
YEMI AKINTOMIDE, a journalist and public affairs analyst wrote from Ireakari Estate 2, Orita-Obele, Akure