By Ayobami Agboola, Osogbo
A governorship aspirant on the platform of All Progressives Congress (APC) in Osun state, Dr Peter Babalola, has vowed to continue the milestone developmental programmes and projects of the Governor Rauf Aregbesola, if he wins the coming gubernatorial election.
Babalola who commended Aregbesola for his unprecedented achievements within the space of seven and half years said the major key to the continuation of these developmental projects was for the party and the people of the state to vote him as the successor of Governor Rauf Aregbesola.
He said this in Ikire, the headquarters of Irewole Local Government Area on Tuesday at an inter-religious prayer programme organised to start his governorship campaign.
Babalola who is the Chairman of Osun State Local Government Service Commission said, non of the aspirants have the experience and exposure he has in terms of governance, boasting that he has in-depth understanding of the administration’s six point integral action plans philosophy.
“I can say it categorically that among the aspirants jostling for governor’s seat under the canopy of our great party, non of them can compete with me in terms of experience and exposure.”
“I am the best with grasp of the policies of Aregbesola’s administration, so I am best suited for the job. I will use my wealth of experience to take the state to the promised land”.
“I am using this medium to appreciate our amiable governor, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola for raising bar of development in Osun, in almost 8 years of his reign, the state has witnessed unprecedented development.
“I worked with the military administration and also with civilian government. Aregbesola’s has been able to outperform others before him since the creation of the state. We don’t want that to stop,” Babalola said.
Comparing the outgoing administration with that of previous ones, Babalola said the administration of his former principal, Prince Olagunsoye Oyinlola in the state was foolish.
Babalola who was the Chief of Staff to Oyinlola when he was the governor of the state said he was betrayed by Oyinlola.
However, Babalola did not expatiate on the foolishness he claimed the government of Oyinlola displayed.
Babalola, who spoke in Yoruba however, commended the government of Governor Rauf Aregbesola for running the affairs of the state with good judgment.
The governorship aspirant, who defected from the Peoples Democratic Party and joined the defunct Action Congress of Nigeria said he bought 69 vehicles to campaign for his governorship ambition but converted them to campaign for Oyinlola overnight.
Despite this gesture, Babalola claimed he was betrayed.
He said, ”When we were in government ( Oyinlola’s government) we were foolish and people said I am abusing somebody. We are in government now ( Aregbesola”/ government) and we are wise. “
In another development, Babalola, has said a Christian from Osun West Senatorial District must succeed the incumbent Governor Aregbesola.
He said agitations by the people of West Senatorial for the governorship ticket of APC is real, adding that the zone would not compromise its stand no matter the interest of the power-brokers within APC.
The prayer was attended by the Chief Imam of Osun State, Sheik Musa Animasaun, and imams from all local government areas in the state as well as the leadership of the Christian Association of Nigeria led by the Vice Chairman in the state, Rev. John Adeniyi.
The Timi of Ede, Oba Adesola Lawal, led about 20 Obas to attend the prayer which recorded a large turnout of Christians and Muslims from across the state.
The Christian and Muslim clerics prayed for the success of the campaign and peace and prosperity in the country.
In his sermon, Chief Imam of Federal Polytechnic, Ede, Dr. Taofiq Abdumhamid, said injustice within the fold of the APC caused rancour that dogged State and local Congresses the party recently held across the country.
He then warned Osun state chapter of the party to be fair to all aspirants seeking its governorship ticket to aviod needless controversies, adding that, if zoning is part of APC arrangement, then it should be respected by it’s leaders.
“I was watching television earlier today and I saw reports on rancour that characterised APC Congresses across the country. The root cause of the crises is injustice.
“In Osun here, if zoning is part of APC constitution, whether written or unwritten, it should be respected. Don’t cheat anyone. Be fair to all to avoid needless controversies,” the cleric concluded.
In another sermon, Rev. John Adeniyi, Osun state Deputy Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) chairman, urged Babalola to put his trust in only God, as he goes out to vie for APC ticket.
According to him, people seeking political offices must put God first in their and pursue their ambition in peaceful manner.
The service was attended by the religious leaders, politicians, traditional rulers and members of APC across the state.