Take a fresh look at your lifestyle.

Kwarans have longed for freedom for decades – Wole Oke

Chief Stephen Wole Oke is a member of what is known as Awolowo School of Ideology. He was a member of the Unity Party of Nigeria, UPN, which he, Chief Cornelius Adebayo and others helped to organise in Kwara State in the Second Republic. He was later elected on the platform of the party, as a member of the state House of Assembly where he became the House Leader. He had since, at every stage, belonged to the leftist parties, ranging from the Social Democratic Party, SDP, in the aborted Third Republic; Grassroots Democratic Movement, GDM, one of the five political parties of the late General Sani Abacha; the Alliance for Democracy, AD; Action Congress, AC; Action Congress of Nigeria, ACN, and now All Progressives Congress, APC.

Oke is a radical politician, who had been a thorn in the flesh of the system in Kwara State for decades. At a time, he was the secretary of a body known as the Kwara Progressives Movement, KPM, headed at different times by Chief Cornelius Adebayo and the late Major General Abdulkareem Adisa. He is presently a leader of the APC in the Kwara North region of the state.

He spoke with The Nigerian Xpress in Ilorin on the just concluded general elections as it affects Kwara State.

From Wole Adedeji, Ilorin

READ ALSO:Celebrating Anambra achievers: Looking back into the future

How would you react to the victory of APC in Kwara State?

It is a long dream coming to pass. The people have for decades been desirous of freedom; freedom from the clutch of a self-established dynasty that had for years held them bondage. Thank God the prayers of our people had been answered. The people have played their part. The election has come and gone. A winner has emerged in the person of Alhaji Abdulrazaq AbdulRahman of the APC. Success has come his way through divine intervention and the determination of the people, who have faithfully endured the rigours of a long wait on the queue in the sun to cast their votes, believing that liberation has come.

What advice do you have for the governor-elect and his government?

With the declaration of Alhaji Abdulrazaq AbdulRahman as the winner of the election, expectations have begun to run riot. The governor-elect cannot afford to allow the expectations of the people to faint so early in his administration. He should lend the people his ears and be receptive to their demands, views, opinions and ideas. In the interest of his administration and the future, the governor-elect should open his ears to the people and make himself very accessible, humbling himself to be a team player, as he cannot afford to be a lone ranger in his new status as governor of the state, now operating in the public domain and no longer as a private sector practitioner, for the purpose of ensuring positive change in the state; a change that will ensure meaningful, equitable ad even development throughout the state.

A change that positively impacts on the living standard and the well-being of the people in terms of availability of potable water, not only in the state capital, but in every town and village in every local government area of the state; access to good health facility for every citizen no matter his or her place of habitation in any part of the state. The people’s desire is for a change that will take our youth away from the street as job seekers and make them fully employed in order to legitimately earn their living; a change that will distinguish AbdulRahman’s administration from Bukola’s era of stagnation. They are asking for a change that will leave a worthy legacy for generations coming behind.

READ ALSO:Trophy 5-a-side tournament: Over 300 grassroots teams emerge

What are the immediate expectations of the people of the state?

These are the expectations of the people; they expect the governor-elect to hit the ground running. His success in this direction will be contingent upon the quality of people whom he might decide to surround himself in government. The character of his administration cannot be divorced from the character traits of the personnel in his administration.


What advice do you have for Kwarans?

It is necessary to remind the people to keep hope alive and give the new administration the necessary support both morally and spiritually. There lies the success of the incoming administration and the realisation and fulfillment of the people’s expectations and desires. There can be no doubt that the governor-elect is determined to run a successful administration and perform, as much as humanly possible and within the limit of available resources, to the satisfaction of the people, judging from his success in the private sector.His international business connection will surely come into play in the administration, as hopefully, foreign investors will find Kwara State their preferred destination in Nigeria.