Breakfast With Governor Kayode Fayemi
A Reporter’s Diary
By Akogun Tai Oguntayo
It was just few minutes past 7:00 this morning when I received a call from the former National President of the Association of Nigerian Authors (ANA), Dr Wale Okediran saying: “Akogun, sorry for waking you up. Please can you join me at the hotel right now so that you can accompany me to the Governor?”
Without thinking twice, I answered extemporaneously: ” On my way sir!”. Are you laughing? Please don’t! Tell me, who will turn down such an early morning rare honour by an august visitor to the No 1 citizen of my State?
Within a couple of minutes I finished bathing and put on a Lord Lugardian suit not even minding if I looked like a village headmaster, just to beat the time because the Okediran I know would zoom off after waiting few minutes without seeing me.
On getting to the main entrance of the Government House, some tough-looking policemen on duty won’t allow us in until we had to put a call across to the one and only Erelu Bisi Fayemi who directed that we should be allowed in. Dont mind me, the police were doing their job. In a jiffy we were already at the lounge of Oduola Osuntokun House where we were told the Governor was yet to get out. Of course, we were his first visitors at 7:55am.
Before we could say Jean Jack Robinson at the waiting room, we were already ushered into the sitting room where the Olorioko came in alone, no orderly, no PA, no protocol or any formality. Apparently he was coming from his study within his room as he was wearing a T-shirt and trouser with a palm slippers.
We stood up to greet him but he waved us to sit down and the waiters who already came to demand for our choice of first course even before the Governor’s arrival, then brought a tray of coffee, tea, honey, sugar, hot water and spoons. I’m sure you won’t ask me what all these are for. Lol!
I was busy gazing in askance at the 24 inches television, watching Channel television while the duo of Dr Okediran and the Governor sipped the hot tea and chatted about the ANA event of yesterday among other issues. Suddenly, the Governor looked at my side and said: “Oh Tai, what are you waiting for? Help yourself with tea please.”
I was so humbled to take one of the cups on his stool to pour in some tea not knowing that the real breakfast was being prepared. With that tea already taken, I was about calling Mummy Femi (that’s what I call my wife o!) not to bother preparing breakfast for me when a well dressed waiter came to say that the table was set.
We then moved out of the large room to the dining where each of the three of us served ourselves. Who says there is no difference between being in government and being in the opposition? Through out Oga Fayose’s government, I dared not move close to the junction of the Government House not to talk of going inside to sit down on the same table eating breakfast with him. This is the real Stomach Infrastructure not the deceitful roadside booli eating style. I can see you are waiting to read what I ate, that’s a story for another day because Yoruba people will say: “a kii ri enu ojimomo” – no one watches the king eat!
As if Dr Wale Okediran was reading my mind, he asked the Governor as we were busy munching and gulping, “Excellency, do you mind if we take some pictures?” Gladly, the Governor said: “shebi oga journalist is here (referring to me)”. Hardly did he finish his comment when I jumped up taking my ever ready paparazzi phone to snap him and Dr Okediran. I later gave a waiter to take another one that included me.
The sumptuous breakfast was no longer my interest but the opportunity to meet the Governor again inside a building we left four years ago. With the two great men. I also participated in their discussion freely and as the Governor saw us out it was a retinue of policemen state house staff and visitors that we met.
I walked tall and raised my head high as they were all looking at us that who could these two guys be to have brought out the Governor in a casual dress this early morning? Those who already knew me there were like: “could this be Akogun Agba Oye?” Abeg, park well, na me biko!