Obasa: The making of Agege political leader, by Afolabi Ayantayo

hon. obasa
It is no gainsaying the fact that Lagos State House of Assembly Speaker, Rt. Hon. Mudasiru Ajayi Obasa, is the dominant name in the sphere of politics in Agege. In banners, posters and signposts, different faces of the Speaker straddle the township. His acceptance as the leader of all political groups within the All Progressives Congress in Agege Federal Constituency is unassailable. And many still strive to team up with him, even from outside the APC enclave. Daily, the quintessential politician receives droves of decampees from other parties across the political divides in Agege.
That the Speaker will be returned by the people of his constituency for another term as their representative is no longer the issue, as both his party and the entire populace are resolute on that. What with many benefits that have accrued to the community upon his ascending the speakership seat.
The issue is maintaining our current status as a stakeholder in the affairs of our exemplary state, Lagos. This is because for a long time Agege had lagged firmly behind in terms of physical and human development until the current ascendancy of Mr Speaker.
That his speakership position has benefited us immensely is an understatement. Hardly has any other community benefitted so much from the speakership position at any time in the history of Lagos State than our own humble Agege. The cornucopia of this position is felt by almost all inhabitants of the entire Agege kingdom. And to add to all these is the enigmatic personality of the Speaker himself. Affable, humble, attentive, focused, hardworking, intelligent, experienced, dynamic and above all, pious, Obasa is a shining example to many aspiring youths in whatever vocation they find themselves.
Many are born into leadership, many work their ways to leadership while many grow up to attain leadership. In the case of Obasa, for those of us who have been with him right from the beginning of his legislative career, the man had been dogged in his pursuit of the apex of his career. And it has not been easy, what with weathering many political storms that fill the paths of Nigerian politicians who manage to clinch their choice positions.
As an astute politician, Obasa’s mind is recondite and impenetrable. Not given to too many words, the prayerful legislator operates with a fiery tenacity in the pursuit of his goals which he has achieved for himself and many of his followers who have benefited immensely from his political endeavours.
Initially wrongly perceived by many as arrogant, inattentive and unresponsive, many have now learned that he is actually humble, simple and easy to work with if only you recognize his forthright, truthful and upright dispositions. He has been benevolent to many who needed assistance not only within Agege but all over the state, but he won’t make noise about it. These assertions are verifiable by anyone in doubt as the Speaker operates an open door policy both at his constituency office and his office at Lagos State House of Assembly complex.
Another important aspect of the Obasa narrative is the glamour, charm, candour and prestige that his personality has attracted to the seat. By operating with panache, grace and amity among his colleagues in the house, the state Governor, Akinwumi Ambode, and our great leader, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, he has been able to gain their confidence and friendship much to the chagrin of his detractors. Without mincing words, it would be difficult for his successors to fill his shoes upon leaving office. His popularity across the entire nation is unprecedented and this should be a source of glory and pride to us back home in Agege, a town relegated and unrecognized, perceived by many as lowdown township of peasants and riffraffs now respected by many as Lagos State’s speaker’s home base. If we could produce a speaker why not a governor in the nearest future?
As a versatile, ebullient and proficient Speaker, Obasa has led the Lagos House of Assembly to be the most productive assembly in Africa. One of the major impact this proficiency has on the assembly is the adoption, by the house, of the native language of Lagos State, Yoruba, as a language of proceedings. This bold step aimed at resuscitating our dying language further bore upon the Lagos State Government into making Yoruba a compulsory subject in all basic and secondary schools in the state.
Indeed, by the landmark achievements that the Speaker has recorded in his first term, we are rest assured that his second term would be more eventful and equally scandal free. This is because Obasa has learnt the ropes and garnered requisite experiences over the years at the Assembly.
It gladdens my heart that we’re speaking with one voice again after so much rancour, resentments and bitterness elicited by last year’s contests. All along, the Speaker, as I was aware then, was all for peaceful resolution of the issues that generated back then but some misconstrued his intentions for attempt at domination and all hell broke loose. Now, almost everyone is coming back to their senses: the hen is coming home to roost.
And having rallied all political gladiators and political office holders in Agege together, from my humble self, to the two council chairmen: in the persons of Hon. J.S. Babatunde and Hon. Ganiyu Egunlobi; member, Lagos State House of Assembly representing constituency 02, Hon. Olayinka Ogundimu; state Commissioner for Waterfront Infrastructure, Hon. S.B. Adejare; member of the House of Representatives representing Agege Federal Constituency, Hon. Taofeek Adaranijo; former member, House of Representatives, Hon. A. Amunikoro; former member, Lagos State House of Assembly, Hon. A. Asimiyu; among many others, Obasa successfully united all political forces in the community and this impacted heavily on the just concluded APC ward congresses that took place in all political wards in both Orile Agege and Agege on May 5, 2018.
The APC being almost about the only party in Agege, people from all walks of life trooped out to participate in the congresses. And, speaking with one voice in the presentation of party executives, the congresses held all over in the 13 wards in peaceful atmosphere, without any incidence whatsoever.
I must at this juncture commend the Rt. Hon. for taking it upon himself to settle all scores and balancing the political equations in Agege, so that together, we may move forward. We must realize the need to speak with one voice, spoken through the Speaker, whom the Almighty has ordained to lead us to the promised land. We thank all those who understood our plight and listened to our wisdom and followed the moving train. We urge the fractional minority still nursing one animosity or the other to come with us under the umbrella of Obasa’s leadership. As he himself has said, there’s enough to go round.
. Ayantayo, former Secretary to the Local Government, Orile Agege Local Council Development Area, writes from Agege.