The Sunshine Leadership Forum, a socio-political organisation, has appealed to the President-elect, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, to consider Ondo State for additional spots while distributing appointments across the states after being sworn-in as President on May 29, 2023.
The group, in a communique issued after a meeting, in Akure, on Tuesday, submitted that, since the advent of Muhammadu Buhari’s administration in 2015, Ondo State has continually been undermined by the Federal Government for appointments.
According to a statement by its Director of Communications, Steve Bayode, what the state has always received was junior ministerial positions and low-level appointments into other federal government agencies, heads of boards, and other committees of the federal government.
The group emphasized that Ondo State is the bastion of social progressivism political ideology in Nigeria. Progressive politics started in the ancient town of Owo in Ondo State. The state is the cradle of modern-day Nigeria’s progressive politics.
Leader of the group, Engr Benjamin Akinbobola, said despite the intimidating credentials Ondo State people possessed and it is the fountain of the progressive movement in Nigeria, the state is not being awarded the corresponding federal government patronage in the distribution of infrastructure and manpower development in the country.
Akinbobola said, “in the last eight years-on of APC government, no federal government presence could be recorded in the state. The Akure-Ikere road that was awarded was, thereafter, abandoned. This is one area in which the state would have benefited from the nation’s infrastructural developmental dive. However rumors making the rounds state that the project has been riddled with contractual controversy and led to its abandonment.
“Ondo State produced some of the brightest brains in Nigeria the state was not even considered for a substantive minister in the present cabinet. All the state has gotten from the APC led government was mere minister-of-state positions.
“Cladious Omoyele Daramola, a university professor, was given the Minister of State of the Niger/Delta ministry. Alasoadura, a former senator of the federal republic of Nigeria, got a Minister of State appointment to two different Ministries. Also, the present Minister of State for Transport, Prince Ademola Adegoroye, got the same treatment in the last cabinet reshuffle”.
The group is struggling to phantom the cause of the consistent debacle of the non-appointment of Ondo State indigenes into senior ministerial positions in the country has decided to take a step further by appealing to the newly, elected president to look into the matter.
The Sunshine Leadership Forum is hoping this unexplainable occurrence in the polity of the state would change by the effect of the appeal. In addition, the role played by the state to have churned out 69% of total votes cast, which is the highest percentage of votes in the country for Asiwaju Bola Tinubu in the February 25th, 2023 presidential election is noteworthy and relevant to the scheme of things as may be discussed anywhere.
Also, Ondo State indigenes played a vital role in the campaign activities leading to the election. The governor of the state Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, SAN, was the Southwest Chairman of PCC that delivered the zone for Asiwaju Ahmed Tinubu and other political leaders from the state galvanised the southwest region to participate vigorously in the campaign activities and to vote en-mass for Asiwaju Ahmed Tinubu in the presidential election.
The group acknowledged the quality role played by the leadership of the party in the state led by Engr Ade Adetimehin, the Party Chairman – his political sagacity has always fetched the party a consistent winning streak since he became the leader of the party in the state is not, in any way lacking.
Adetimehin often referred to as the Jagaban of Ondo State politics worked, assiduously, to secure the landslide victory for Asiwaju in Ondo State and ensured that no other political party secured up to 25% of the total votes cast in the state.
The group is seeking, not only the appointment of the state indigenes as Ministers but that the long period by which the state was confined to the junior minister appointments be compensated with more appointments to redeem the feeling of nonsatisfaction nurtured by the people.
The Group posited that like Oliver Twist, “we ask for more positions in the federal government system”.
In the communique, Asiwaju Ahmed Tinubu, the president-elect, was advised to ensure that senior Ministerial appointments and Heads of agencies include people from Ondo State with the requisite skills and experience as the state is bless with a large quantum of it.
The group also appreciated the electorate in the state for their overwhelming support for Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu. It assured them of a renewed hope for a better Nigeria and a prosperous nation.