Oni Canvasses Support for Oyebanji’s Development Efforts

The governor of Ekiti State, Abiodun Oyebanji and former governor of the state, Chief Segun Oni sat side-by-side at the State House Chapel as both leaders worshipped together on Sunday.

Observers continue to commend Oyebanji for his efforts at uniting the state and bringing everyone together to move the state forward.

The latest development is seen as a new dimension to opposition politics in Ekiti State.

Chief Oni, a former governor of the state, was the candidate of the Social Democratic Party (SDP) in the last governorship election that brought Oyebanji in.

Chief Segun Oni stormed the Ekiti Government House Chapel on Sunday morning to join Governor Biodun Oyebanji for the Sunday worship.

The former governor, who came with some members of his immediate family and political associates, arrived at the chapel, located inside Government House Complex, Ado-Ekiti around 9.55am was received by Oyebanji, his host.

Chief Oni said he was in the service to fulfil a promise he had earlier made to Governor Oyebanji to come and worship with him at the Government House Chapel, having missed the opportunity to join the governor for the special thanksgiving service held on October 22, in commemoration of his first anniversary in office.

The former governor, recalled that his last worship at the chapel was on October 15, 2010, the day he was removed from office by the Court of Appeal.

Chief Oni, in his address to the congregation, which included the deputy governor, Chief (Mrs) Monisade Afuye; Speaker of the Assembly, Rt Hon Adeoye Aribasoye; Head of service, Engr Sunday Komolafe and some top government officials, called on stakeholders in the Ekiti project to join hands with Governor Oyebanji to achieve a landmark success for the collective progress of the state.

He emphasised the fact that politics remained an avenue to serve the people, adding that election and election petitions were part of the constitutional processes of democracy.

“It is good to contest an election. It is also good to challenge he outcome in the court. And after then, you move on. We should run politics; politics should not run us. This is the time we should all join hands together with Governor Oyebanji to develop the state”, Chief Oni said.

He expressed delight at the transformation being experienced in the state within the last one year, saying that it was an attestation to Governor Oyebanji’s exemplary and visionary leadership.

“I have come here to fellowship with everybody, especially my brother, the governor and to also tell politicians, we should give ourselves holiday sometimes from politics and politicking”, the former governor said.

He commended the governor for the various infrastructure projects as well as the on-going efforts at ensuring all abandoned projects were completed including the Ado-Ifaki road, saying “I will say he has been very impressive, he is a gift to us as a people and I believe that he has a perfect composure to move us forward.”

Chief Oni charged the governor to continue to trust in God for the realization of his shared prosperity agenda, even in the face of the meagre resources available to the state.

In his response, Governor Oyebanji thanked the former governor for his love for the state and his commitment to her development.

Oyebanji, who described Chief Oni as a selfless leader, who genuinely loved and worked for the growth of Ekiti people, said the state would forever be grateful to him for his selfless service to the people of the state.

“I thank Your Excellency for this remarkable visit, which I consider a demonstration of your love for me and for our dear state. For you to come around and worship God with us shows you love and support our development efforts.

“One think remarkable about you is that you love Ekiti people and Ekiti people love you. You are selfless and you live in the heart of the people.

“That I won the election does not mean I am better than you. It is by God’s grace. And you have been a pillar of support to us, immediately the court case ended”, Oyebanji declared.

The governor also used the avenue to appreciate all former governors of the state for their support for his administration, not minding political party affiliations.

Assuring the former governors that his administration would continue to prioritize the welfare of the people, Oyebanji urged stakeholders to come and contribute their expertise and resources for the overall development of the state, emphasizing that progress knew no party lines.

The Chaplain of the Government House Chapel, Pastor Segun Awolumate, who hailed the humility and simplicity of both former the governor, Chief Oni and the incumbent Governor Oyebanji, urged politicians and public office holders and seekers to take a cue from the lifestyles of the two leaders.