“Talk is cheap, voting is free; take it to the polls.” – Nanette L. Avery
It’s election season in Nigeria where various political parties are throwing their weight behind their flag-bearers that won in the primaries either by delegate voting or consensus. From a minimalist perspective, elections are the first and most basic indicator of democracy.
The Ekiti governorship election is set to hold on July 18 and 16 candidates will be on the ballot in the race to succeed Governor Kayode Fayemi.
The people of Ekiti state will be visiting the poll come this Saturday to elect their Governor that will be occupying for the next four years and it’s necessary to give an overview of each of the major party flag-bearers. Let’s start with the ruling party- APC
Biodun Oyebanji – APC
Abiodun Oyebanji is a Nigerian politician and currently a member of the All Progressive Congress (APC). He’s a lecturer and also once a Secretary to the Ekiti State Government.
Oyebanji was born on the 21st of December 1967 and he is from Ikogosi-Ekiti, Ekiti State, Nigeria and married to Professor (Mrs) Oyebanji a princess in Ado Ekiti and also an Associate Professor at the University of Ibadan.
His academic journey started at Baptist primary school, Ikogosi-Ekiti, Ekiti State, Nigeria. He attended Awo Community High School before he moved to CAC Grammar School, Efon-Alaaye, Ekiti state in 1979.
In the years 1983 to 1985, he attended the Federal school of Arts and Science, Ondo State and the District commercial Secondary school, Aramoko-Ekiti.
In 1989, he bagged a degree in Political Science from the Ondo State University, now known as Ekiti State University. Also, in 1992, he got a Master’s in Political Science from the University of Ibadan (UI).
In the years 1993 to 1997, Abiodun Oyebanji worked as a lecturer at the University of Ado-Ekiti in the Department of Political science.
After four years, he started working as a Manager for defunct Omega Bank PLC now known as Heritage Bank, till May 1999.
He is also into Agricultural business and is currently the chairperson of Con Dios Farm LTD.
His political journey started on 8th June 1999 when he became the special assistant of parliament affairs to the Ekiti state governor.
From, the 1st of August 2000 to September 2001, he was the special adviser to the Ekiti State Governor. From September 2001 to May 29th 2003, he became the Chief of Staff to Ekiti state governor.
Also, he became the chairperson for a governing board of the Federal Ministry of Youth and Sports Development from June 2009 to December 2010.
He was the commissioner of the Ministry of Integration and Intergovernmental Affairs of the Ekiti state governor from the 23rd of December 2010 to December 2011.
December 2011 to 9th January 2013, he became the Commissioner for Transformation Strategy and Delivery of Head Office.
He served as the Commissioner for the Ministry of Budget, Economic Planning and Service delivery in Ekiti state between January 10, 2013, and October 16, 2014. Then he became the secretary of the Ekiti state government from 18th October 2018 to 2021.
He became an Ekiti state governorship aspirant when he resigned as the SSG on the 7th of December 2021.
Oyebanji promises to the people of Ekiti focuses on Job Creation, Human Capital Development, Agriculture & Rural Development, Infrastructure & Industrialisation, Arts, Culture & Tourism and Governance.
The priorities are
- Grow the economy and create jobs for young people.
- Complete strategic infrastructure projects in transport, agriculture and power designed to improve quality of life for all and make Ekiti competitive for businesses of all sizes.
- Invest in the human capital development required to safeguard people’s lives, livelihoods, well-being and future.
- Provide a conducive environment and sustainable welfare package for our workers, 4retirees and traditional institutions.
Bisi Kolawole – PDP
Bisi Kolawole is a Nigerian politician and currently a member of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), born on September 20, 1956, in Ile-Ife by Chief Ezekiel Kolawole and Mrs. Alice Mojirola Kolawole from Efon-Alaaye in Ekiti State, Nigeria.
His academic journey started at John’s Anglican Primary School, Efon-Alaaye, Ekiti state, Nigeria. He attended Doherty Memorial Grammar School, ljero-Ekiti. His Higher School Certificate was obtained from Ahmadiyya College, Agege, Lagos, Nigeria.
Kolawole furthered his study at Yaba College of Technology, where he got a Higher National Diploma (HND) in Graphics design and also bagged both a Post-graduate diploma and master’s in Public Administration at Ekiti State University (EKSU) – the year remains unknown.
Kolawole’s National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) program was between 1981 to 1982. In the years 1982 to 1992, he started working as a staff in Nichetex Industries, Ikorodu, Lagos. He later ventured into the printing business.
He started his political journey right from his childhood because in 1950 his father, High Chief Kolawole Ezekiel was a councilor in Efon-Alaaye under the Ekiti West Divisional Council in Awolowo’s Action Group and he also lives in the Obaloja Palace in Ekiti State.
Therefore, all these experiences have helped shape his political trait. He was also one of the prominent and courageous members of the Student Union politics at Yaba technology. He was a former member of the Ekiti State House of Assembly in the year 2007 to 2011.
From 2015 to 2018, he served as the Commissioner for Environment under the tenure of Governor Ayodele Fayose and he was once the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) president of Ekiti state.
In the year 2020, he contested for Ekiti, PDP chairperson, and he won. He resigned in September 2021 and joined the 2022 gubernatorial primary race on January 26th.
Kolawole promises to the people of Ekiti focuses on six-cardinal agenda anchored chiefly on participatory governance, security of lives and property, agricultural development and food security.
The Priorities are
- Tackle the recurring cases of kidnapping, ICT fraud and farmers-herders’ clashes to protect the citizens and boost agriculture for sustainable development and attaining of food security.
- Provision of high quality education at all levels.
- Rally local security to work with conventional security apparatuses like police, DSS, and NSCDC.
- Introduce land use control system to fight illegal land grabbers and for the management of land disputes.
Wole Oluyede – ADC
Dr Oluwole Olumayokun Oluyede governorship candidate of the African Democratic Congress is a Medical Doctor with interest in Emergency Medicine,Rural and Remote Medicine He runs the Gnownagerup Shire Medical Practice in Gnowangerup WA Australia and He is a Fellow of the Royal Australian College of General Practitioner.
(RACGP). He married to Olukemi Oludoyinsola Oluyede (nee Kuforiji) and they are blessed with children.
Dr Wole was born on June 04, 1964 to the late Chief Folarin Joseph Oluyede a retired teacher turned business man and a seasoned politician until his death in 2013 and Chief Mrs. Grace AyodeleOluyede (nee Gbadebo) also a teacher who retired as a school headmistress in 1994.
Dr. Wole grew up in Ado Ekiti, living in Dallimore Street Christ School Ado Ekiti teacher’s quarters and State Hospital area of Ado Ekiti in those days. Wole Oluyede began his Primary education at Emmanuel Primary School, Ado Ekiti, Nigeria in 1970. In 1974, He gained admission into Christ School Ado Ekiti.
He later went to Federal School of Arts and Science Ondo State for his A” Levels but was there for a year before he gained admission into the University of Ilorin in 1980 to study Medicine. In school, He played Badminton for the then Ondo state.
He graduated from Ilorin in 1986 and did his Internship training at the ‘State Hospital Akure” from 1986 – 1987 and completed his mandatory National Youth Service Corps year service with Neuro-Psychiatric Hospital Yaba Lagos in 1988.
After his NYSC, Dr. Wole worked for a while at the Neuro-Psychiatric Hospital Aro Abeokuta and also at the Comprehensive Health Centre Emure Ekiti, LUTH and several private Hospitals in Akure and Lagos.
He opened his first clinic at Agege Pen Cinema Lagos thereafter, he opened another one at Iju Agege. He later moved the clinic Bethany Clinic to Abesan Estate in Ipaja Lagos in 1994.
He operated Bethany Clinic until 2001 when he left the shores of Nigeria for the United States of America.
Dr. Wole started a new phase of life when he got to the US in 2001 and started residency program at Upstate University Syracuse NY USA, certified by the Canadian Medical board.
He went to the Caribbean for about 3 years to practice Rural Emergency medicine and from there went to Australia in 2006 where he was certified as a fellow of the Australian Royal college.
In 2008, the government of Prince Edward Island invited him to work for them hence his move to PEI Canada in 2008 but he never left Australia completely.
He was constantly going back to Australia at least 4 times in a year and eventually left Canada in 2011 for Australia where he now owns his Practice.
Despite the fact that he has traveled far and wide, he did not forget his source which is Nigeria and in particular Ekiti.
He is into so many partnership businesses both abroad and in Nigeria. After he decided he was going into hospitality business, he started the business in Ikere Ekiti hence the birth of “Green Hills Hotel” that is under construction along Ikere Ado Highway in Ikere. He also has a hospital under construction in Ikere as well.
The Nigerian politician is seeking to become the governor of Ekiti State. He was a former member of the All Progressive Congress (APC) but dumped the party after being unsuccessful in obtaining the governorship ticket. He is now ADC’s candidate and was elected through a voice vote at the primary election of the party held in Ado-Ekiti.
Oluyede promises to the people of Ekiti focuses on dismantle the alleged castle of poverty, unemployment, exclusion and insecurity.
Segun Oni – SDP
Segun Oni flagbearer for Social Democratic Party in Ekiti 2022 gubernatorial Election. Olusegun Oni popularly known as Segun Oni was born on September 5, 1954, at Ifaki in Ekiti State, Nigeria to Hezekiah Adebomi Oni and Comfort Ajayi Oni. His father died on January 28, 1981. Segun Oni is a Nigerian Politician and an ex-Governor of Ekiti State married to Olukemi Adetola (nee Ogunsiji).
Oni started schooling at Methodist School, Ilogbe, Ifaki at a very young age but he was accepted on a non-formal status in January 1959. He was not admitted formally into the school register until after the first half-year examinations, having proven by his results in the examinations that he could cope with school life despite his age. He completed his Primary School education in the same school in December 1964.
Segun Oni, thereafter, attended the Methodist Secondary Modern School, Ifaki Ekiti from 1965 to 1968 and Wesley College, Ibadan from 1969 to 1971. Olusegun Oni the trained teacher, having completed his education at Wesley College Ibadan in December 1971, returned to Ekiti to work at Community Secondary Modern School, Ido Ekiti, where he taught Arithmetic, Mathematics, and Geography from January 1972 to July 1973, before being invited to join the staff of Ayetoro-Iloro High School, Ayetoro/Iloro Ekiti where he taught Physics, Mathematics and Yoruba until he left for the University of Ife in September 1974.
At the University of Ife, Segun Oni read Chemical Engineering but was actively involved in student journalism as a member of the defunct Spit-Fire News Agency, and politics.
He was active in student politics as he was an Electoral Commissioner in 1977 /1978 session in the commission that conducted probably the then best-ever students union elections in Ife having introduced amongst other innovations, a Press parley (at Moremi Hall common room) for Presidential candidates and relocation of the election-eve speech night from the cafeteria to Oduduwa Hall amphi-theatre. That election widely acclaimed by students, staff, and the authorities of the University, produced the then youngest-ever produced President of the Students Union of the University.
Olusegun left Ife with a Second Class Upper division degree in Chemical Engineering in June, 1979. He then proceeded for his National Youth Service Corps where he was posted to the National Steel Development Authority (NSDA) Ajaokuta, later Ajaokuta Steel Company (ASCO) from 1979 to 1980. During the National Youth Service Corps in Ajaokuta, Segun worked at the Metallurgical Coal Research Laboratory.
After NYSC, he was offered immediate employment by Ajaokuta Steel Company where he worked briefly as Chemical Engineer II in the Planning Division.
In September 1980, Segun returned to school and was in University of Lagos, Akoka for his Masters programme in Business Administration (MBA) from September 1980 to January 1982. Simultaneously with this, he was a teacher under the Lagos State Teaching Service Commission. He taught Mathematics, Physics and Chemistry at CMS Grammar School, Bariga and Anthony Village High School, where he was deployed on special assignment to help prepare the then fifth formers for West African School Certificate (WASC) Examination in Physics, after being without a Physics teacher for almost one year.
After his Master’s degree, Segun Oni was offered employment at Delta Steel Company Ltd, Aladja from 1982 to 1984, where He worked in the Marketing and Sales Sector of the Commercial Division as a Commercial Officer I, later Senior Commercial Officer where he was at various times in charge of steel billet allocation to the Inland Rolling Mills (Katsina,Jos and Oshogbo) and Market Analysis and Product Development, where he pioneered the marketing of lime, oxygen/ nitrogen/ argon and foundry products. He worked closely with the external Management Advisors to Aladja, Booz Allen and Hamiton Associates, a USA based International firm of Management Consultants, where he assisted mostly with corporate strategy development.
He left Aladja in January 1985 to join Leventis Staff Development Centre of AG Leventis & Co. Ebute Metta, where he was a Consultant and Management Trainer. He was a member of the pioneer team that designed, delivered and executed the Leventis Group Foundation Course for Managers, a very successful Management Development package, targeted to develop high flying management resources for the Leventis Group. After Leventis, Segun worked briefly at Public Finance and Management Consultants Ltd as Director of Projects. Here, he anchored the first National Workshop on Investment Opportunities in Downstream Oil and Gas Industries in Nigeria, and another for the Steel and Metallurgy industries.
Segun Oni joined Rank Xerox Nigeria Ltd as Technical Support Manager in May, 1987. Here, he was responsible for operational and strategic planning for the Customer Services and Logistics Division.
His performance on this job was recognized with a move to the position of Regional Sales Manager for the Western Region covering present-day Ekiti, Ondo, Osun, Oyo, Ogun, Kwara, Kogi, Edo and Delta States in January 1992, a position he held briefly, leading the Western Region from the last position (out of seven) to first position in six months. In July 1992, Segun was posted out to Kenya by Rank Xerox Headquarters (in UK) as an expatriate, the first time an African was being so treated. In Kenya, he held the position of Customer Service Operations Manager responsible totally for service and logistics, including imports and exports.
In addition, he was also responsible for Service Support to the Xerox Dealership Operations in all countries of the entire East and Central Africa sub-region. He returned to Nigeria in 1995 to take over the position of General Manager, Customer Service Operations at Rank Xerox Nigeria from the expatriate General Manager, thereby becoming the first Nigerian to manage the Xerox service force in Nigeria. This position has since been held by Nigerians.
The position of General Manager, Systems Business was added to Segun’s portfolio in early 1997. When Xerox Nigeria was reorganized in October 1997 and the functional structure was replaced with a regional structure, Segun Oni became the Director responsible for the Northern Regional Operations based in Abuja. He led the Northern Region from 15% of total company revenue in 1997 to 36% in 2000 when he retired voluntarily from the services of Xerox.
Segun Oni attained the status of corporate member, Nigerian Society of Engineers (MNSE) in 1987. In addition, he became a full Member of the Institute of Management Consultants of Nigeria (MIMC) the same year. In 1988, Segun Oni became a COREN registered Engineer.
He had served as Treasurer, Lagos State Chapter of the Nigerian Society of Chemical Engineers (1986-1988).
In Ekiti State politics, Segun Oni was a foundation member of United Nigeria, Congress Party / (UNCP) where he played a largely supportive role as a party loyalist. He is also a foundation member of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Ekiti.
His support for, and his services to the PDP have been consistent and without any strings attached since the inception of the party. He was nominated by the Honourable Minister of Education in September 1999, to serve on the Board of Trustees of Education Trust Fund (ETF) as Trustee representing the South West. He is still serving on this Board.
Segun Oni was elected Governor of Ekiti State in April 2007 under the Platform of the People Democratic Party (PDP). He was However removed from office on the 15th of October 2010 following the Judgement of an Appeal Court which ruled against him in favour of his opponent, Dr, Kayode Fayemi.
Segun Oni believes that service should be the primary and cardinal objective of politicians, whilst quest for position and leadership should be a by-product of service and loyalty to the political system.
In 2014, he defected from the PDP and joined the newly formed opposition party All Progressive Congress (APC). He then held the position of Deputy National Chairman South.
Segun Oni was conferred with the prestigious title of Asiwaju of Ifaki-Ekiti on Friday, October 29, 2010, exactly 15 days after he left office as governor of Ekiti State.
Segun Oni is a Christian of the Methodist denomination. He believes in service to God and people. While in Kenya, he was a volunteer Honorary Consultant to the Kenya. Management Advisory Programme (K-MAP), an entrepreneurship development initiative, where he anchored all their programmes on Customer Service and Satisfaction Management. In Nigeria, he is involved in microcredit where he sponsors a couple of microcredit cooperatives targeted at the youth and women in Ekiti.
His hobbies include lawn and table Tennis, Jazz and Classical Music, Community Service and Politics.
In October 2015, he was named as one of the Ministerial Nominees to be Screened by the National Assembly under the President Buhari Led administration.