Aworis In Ogun, Lagos Expresses Confidence In Ogun Deputy Governor As They Call For More Political Participation Among Indigenes
By: Ogunremi Esther
Joy, emotion rented the air on Saturday at The Event centre, Ikeja Lagos when Aworis in Ogun and Lagos came together to celebrate the emergence of Engr. (Mrs) Noimot Salako-Oyedele as the first Ogun State’s Deputy Governor to have emerged from the Awori ethnic group of the state.
It will be recalled that Awori people of Ogun state have not had its own fair share of the political pot of pottage since its creation in 1976 until the emergence of Engr. Mrs Noimot Salako-Oyedele whose exalted position changed the Awori political narratives in the 2019 gubernatorial election.
Engr. Mrs Noimot was described as ‘the first Awori to become a Deputy Governor in Ogun State’, a development that was described as ‘boosting the chances of the Aworis to also contest for Ogun State Governorship position in future.’
While declaring the epoch making event open, the chairman, organizing committee for the event, Prof. B.L. Salako, said ‘the celebration was to recognize the golden opportunity Ogun state Governor, Prince Dapo Abiodun granted us by selecting our daughter as his choice of running mate’.
He added that the event was to celebrate the recognition of the ability of Aworis to produce a Deputy Governor in Ogun State. He however, lauded past Deputy Governors in Lagos state who are of Awori tribe for laying the precedence for Engr. Noimot.
A former President, Nigerian Institute of Management and Vice President, Lagos Chambers of Commerce and Industry, Asiwaju (Dr.) Michael Olawale Cole, while delivering his goodwill message, said, “I deeply rejoice with the able, quiet, humble and great Awori daughter, Her Excellency Engr. Noimot who has been a notable repute and a worthy ambassador of the Aworis.”
He appealed to all Awori indigenes to be actively involved in politics as it was high time Aworis took the mantle of leadership in both Ogun and Lagos states. He lamented that Aworis have been sidelined in the scheme of things and they may not take what rightfully belongs to them unless they also join the game.
“I implore all my Awori brothers and sisters to gird their loins as a matter of urgency, encourage collaborations, put up a united front, advocate the Awori cause in this Land, and be at the forefront of every political movement, hence, we may not be given what we deserve.”
The royal host of the event, HIM Oba Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi, Ojaja 2, Ooni of Ife who was represented by the Elejesi Of Ijesi, HRM, Oba Babatunde Tokunbo Awosinmi, while giving his goodwill message, affirmed that Aworis migrated from Ile-Ife and first settled in what became Lagos and Ogun states and as such, they should not be treated with scorn or disdain.
Another royal host, HRM Oba (Prof.) Adeyemi Abdulkabir Obalanlege, Olota of Ota, in his own speech said, “There are numerous lessons to be learnt in the story that led to her new position.
See Olota’s speech below..
Her humility got her this position and I have no doubt that she would prove critics wrong that there are no resourceful people that can govern in Awori land, especially, the Aworis of Ogun state.”
Ogun state’s first lady, Mrs Bamidele Abiodun, said in her speech that “I have known Engr. Noimot for over 30 years. She has been my friend since Primary School, despite the fact, I was not involved in her emergence as the Deputy Governor. I am happy she was given this opportunity and I also make bold to say that she will deliver.
The Deputy Governor, while reacting to the goodwill messages, said, ‘I am happy that this is happening at this time. I must commend Prince Dapo Abiodun, MFR for looking into the direction of Ota and deeming me fit as his choice of running mate. I also commend my darling husband, Alhaji Bode Oyedele for his support towards this. As an Awori daughter, I will continue to build on the reputation I had before I came into government and I will never disappoint my people.’
She however, urged people to continue to support the administration of Prince Dapo Abiodun towards ensuring that they deliver good governance.
The event, which was colorized by thrilling performances from Egungun and the Agasa dance troops had the past Deputy Governors from Lagos state bagging an award of excellence for good performance while in office.
Speaking with VOA News correspondent shortly after the event, the Deputy Governor, Engr. Mrs Noimot Salako-Oyedele, thanked the organizers of the event as well as Aworis for having so much confidence in her.
She said she had no choice than to ensure she deliver in order to change the mindset of some people who are of the opinion that Aworis do not have resourceful people that can govern the state.
See interview here..
She assured that the administration of Prince Dapo Abidoun will make sure that there is sustainability of peace and tranquility in the state.
In an interview with VOA News correspondent, former Deputy Governor of Ogun state, Alhaja Salimot Badru, said that she has confidence in the person of Engr. Noimot Salako, owning to her family background, educational qualifications, and experience which she has gathered in the private sector before venturing into politics.
The event was well attended by who is who in Awori of Ogun and Lagos states. Some of whom included; the Asiwaju of Awori land, Sen. Ayodeji Otegbola, Ogun state first lady, Mrs Bamidele Abiodun, former Ogun Deputy Governor, Alhaja Salimot Badru, former Lagos Deputy Governor, Princess Adejoke Orelope Adefulire, former Deputy Governor of Lagos, Mrs Idayat Adebule, Awori Welfare Association President, Chief Ojolowo, Awori Natives Coalition President, Mr. Oye Taiwo, Senator Akin Odunsi, Professor B.L Salako, Asiwaju (Dr.) Michael Olawale-Cole, Barrister Chief Akinbiyi Ojo SAN, Olota of Ota, HRM Oba (Prof.) Adeyemi Abdulkabir Obalanlege, among several others.