INTERVIEW: Our Hope And Prayer Is That Osun Election Will Be Peaceful – Bolorunduro
Governor Rauf Aregbesola’s second term re-election campaign committees in all the nine Federal Constituencies of Osun State was recently inaugurated by the state chapter of All Progressive Congress (APC).The State Commissioner for Finance, Budget and Economic Planning, Dr. Wale Bolorunduro, a renowned technocrat is made the chairman of the committee for Ijesa North Federal Constituency consisting of Obokun and Oriade Local Governments.
In this interview with MICHAEL OLANREWAJU, Bolorunduro discloses plans by his committee to ensure total victory for incumbent Governor Aregbesola in the scheduled August 9 governorship election despite the presence of big names in the opposition political parties in the area.
As the chairman of Governor Aregbesola’s campaign Organization for Ijesa North Federal Constituency, what are your plans for the campaign?
My plans is to run the most effective campaign such that for the first time, Governor Aregbesola will deliver the highest vote ever recorded in the history of the constituency in terms of number of voters and the vote casted for him and also in term of interest that his re-election will generate. It is going to be a rare privilege to rally round our people and to get them out, get out the voters and the votes for Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola. By my training, am a strategist and a planner, I feel a little bit paranoid in the sense that, the goal that I and my committee set for the re-election of Governor Aregbesola how are we going to deliver it? That is what made me paranoid and you know when you are paranoid you will put in all your best and give yourself to spiritual, you will also need to use the best tools, mobilize all your resources for the project
What message are you dishing out to the citizenry?
The message is simple, ‘Aregbesola Leekan si’ that is, Aregbesola ‘one more time’ and the message will be dishing out to our people that we have never had it so good like this, telling them not to sit down at home but rather go out and vote, don’t just vote, make sure your vote count and ensure that the count is preserved and announced. We are going to rally our people as we all know that Ijesa people are very tenacious, so we are going to unleash the power of Ijesas that is in term of aggressively demonstrating their love for Ogbeni Aregbesola and that they’ve never had it so good. I know that they believe in giving back and they will definitely give back. The people are very conscious about re-election of governor Aregbesola, we are getting quick feedback from our people and they are very cooperating, they know that this is give back time as Aregbesola has done much for them and that, this time around they need to compensate him with their vote. They know that it is the time to put all energy into it and start campaigning door to door, street to street, Ijesa people will vote for the first time the way they’ve never ever voted before, they will vote come rain come sunshine and ensure that their vote count.
On the issue of violence, people are afraid that violence might trail the election. What are you doing concerning it?
What we are telling our people is that, the security personnel are there to protect them, whatever things that may happen they will all be protected and safeguarded by the security personnel that will be deployed for the purpose of that election. What we are telling our people is to come out en-mass and vote, they should not be intimidated by anybody. We hope there would not be any violence and strongly believed too that the security agents will take charge and ensure that there is peace and violent free election. Having said that, I think as a Yoruba people, looking at Osun actually be at the centre of the South West, we are at the peak of that historical facts that the Yoruba people are sophisticated and they know how to defend themselves, the Yoruba people believed that nobody has monopoly of violence, they know how to defend their vote, if you look at the history, it happened in 1965 when election were rigged and marred with violence, people then rose and defend their vote and the First Republic fell. In 1983 also, elections were rigged in South West, Ondo and old Oyo, the Second Republic fell also not because elections were rigged in other places but in South West. Our hope and prayer is that, the election will be peaceful, it will be violent free and if its violent free, the President of the country will come out as a responsible leader and show courage to ensure that the vote of the people count. We are only enjoining Mr President to ensure that the vote of the people of Osun and Ekiti states count.
What words do you wants to pass to the opposition?
My message for the opposition is to play the game according to the rule. They should know that they don’t have monopoly of violence, they should not subvert the wish of the people which the only way to express themselves is to vote democratically and to be able to do that, they must come out with their manifestoes and up till now, we have not seeing the manifestoes of the major opposition. We expect them to come out and let us have robust arguments not to be poisoning the air that they will reverse everything. Osun is on the move towards socio- economic development and it cannot be reversed never will it be reversed.
You are a corporate person but now digging deep into politics. What have you seen to be the driven force and difference that has happened in the two worlds?
In the world of corporate, politics are played but somehow politics in the corporate world are at a stage lifted you above life and also lifted you above being shameless not because you cannot come down. The irony of life is that, human beings has the opportunity to live above life and things that are not profitable to development either by virtue of events or determine and actualization. So, in the corporate world, you are elevated above pedestal things but you can actually come down, so in essence, what I mean is that nobody has monopoly of violence, the progressives which APC represented will not be a folks but neither be eating up by the folks. In corporate, that element of preservation and defending your right exists. In the political domain in administrative politics, there is always a similarities and that is you are providing service to humanity just as in corporate world too by growing your business and allowing the business to employ more people but in term of politics, whether in the corporate, they are the same, the only difference is that the corporate people live by the rule, they are somehow elevated beyond the pedestal things. We are all political animals which will always look for opportunity to provide service and to defend it.
Which of the Aregbesola’s programmes do you admire best and why?
I admired his socio- developmental programmes like the infrastructures putting in place. Am an admirer of physical infrastructure person, I believed so much in physical infrastructure development why? Because it is the only way as a federating unit in the federal system whereby you can as a leader attach yourself and stimulate growth, when you build road, airport, schools, you automatically created job and it will drastically reduce unemployment which will jacke up peoples standard of living and moving people out of poverty. As an applied economist, that is the best programm and you know coming from a corporate background, people think you are a monetary, and am not but a fiscal policy man who believed in the federating system where you do not have currency sovereignty as a state. The only instrument you have is fiscal instrument and you must drive it like crazy, you must create linkages between your fiscal, expenditure and economy growth and between real growth and development. For me I love the socio service. The most critical thing above all is physical infrastructural development.
As a technocrat, how are you coping with the job assigned to you considering the PDP bigwigs in your federal constituency?
I will not want to discuss our strategies and make it known but we have being going out, door to door, street to street and asking our people a simple question, who have not benefited from Aregbesola’s government? There is no house hold that has not benefitted directly or indirectly from Aregbesola’s government. So we go out with that message and challenging our people to come out en-mass and vote. Talking of bigwigs of PDP in my federal constituency, yes we are not scared of them, the question we are asking our people is that, despite the claim of the opposition of being closed with the people when they are in government and now claiming of being closed with the federal government, what do they do for them? If they have not done anything for them in the past, people should come out and vote against them, cast their vote for Aregbesola who is performing wonders.
How are you going to sustain the intrigues of politics as a technocrat?
You must first realise that government and corporate policies are different, in corporate policy, many people play by the rule but in governance, it is not so, so your role is to call the attention of the umpire and the security operatives to ensure that opposition play by the rule, that is going to be very key.
What are your plans to dislodge the moneybag politician?
We have being sensitizing our people not to sell their vote, selling their vote amount to selling their future. Osun people are sensible, they have tested these people before and know what they were up to, the infrastructural development putting in place in Osun as of today has seriously transformed the state, people can not fall into their hands again, we have learnt our lessons. Our people and to get them out get out the voters and the votes for Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola. By my training, am a strategist and a planner, I feel a little bit paranoid in the sense that, the goal that I and my committee set for the re-election of Governor Aregbesola how are we going to deliver it?
That is what made me paranoid and you know when you are paranoid you will put in all your best and give yourself to spiritual, you will also need to use the best tools, mobilize all your resources to ensure that you deliver all your set goals.