By Faseesin Olasumbo Esq.
In what appears like tsunami with explosives across the length and breadth of Ondo State are two groups namely Arabinrin Grassroots Movement (AGM) and Non-Indigene Coalition (NIC) spreading like wide fire in all the eighteen (18) Local Government. They are groups of individuals who saw the need to unite and cause a major breakthrough for members who have been overtime neglected with less or no attention and sense of recognition until Betty Akeredolu, the wife of Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, SAN gave expression to their efforts in political participation.
Arabinrin Betty Akeredolu gave assurances in her brief meeting with these group of persons and personalities who found the need to identify with Arakunrin Akeredolu’s administration for obvious transcendal projects and monumental accomplishment in infrastructure and industrial revolution among other unprecedented development.
To them, it is unprecedented in the annals of Ondo State politics hence “our collective desire to support what we think is good without bias or sentiment.” While AGM has been in operation for about two years consequent upon neglect of grassroot loyalists of Aketi; NIC was birthed to foster unity among diverse ethnic groups resident in Ondo state as well as harvest their support for re-election bid of Governor Akeredolu. According to Arabinrin Betty Akeredolu, “the AGM
has a life of its own. They are present in all the 18 Local Government Council but Akure North and South members’ commitment is phenomenal.It has no second part!
They are operating independently. During the operation “win your ward”, they appear everywhere in the two local government with colourful Blood Red-T-Shirts and Face Caps. “It is amazing and I feel fulfilled that my foot soldiers are meeting the goal of the movement” Betty asserted.
Of course a complement for the party structure without demanding money or, waiting Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu SAN to open vault and perhaps distribute stipend. They obviously bridge the gap and play the supporting striker. On their own they raise money without waiting for Mrs. Akeredolu. Occasionally, she drops something at will. “An interesting development and very unusual in our polity. I couldn’t be happier, On the part of NIC, they
have found reason to support our amiable Governor, Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu SAN who has been doing well since inception. NIC is quick to point at the roads and schools wearing new look”, Mrs Akeredolu added
The coalition is equally delighted at the enormous sense of belonging through Arabinrin Betty Akeredolu who keeps assuring us that discriminating tendency against the non-indigenes under Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu SAN administration is now the past and perhaps in extinction forever. It is a thing of the past going forward. Equal rights, benefits & privileges with Akeredolu’s administration she promised. While addressing members, Chief Pius Ezekwere, the chairman of NIC added ” our people are committed to this project and we shall not renege or retreat, it is a win for us”.
NIC has since come to terms with this soul uplifting reality hence the obvious participation in the politics of Ondo State with Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu SAN as a test case scenario. The coalition through an online registration platform is mobilizing all non-indigenes across Ondo State who reside in all the nooks and crannies of the state. It is a step towards ensuring nobody is left behind in the scheme of things. NIC has expressed their availability and preparedness for this October, 10, 2020 election stating that the campaign had been in top gear towards the realization of the 4+4 agenda. It is heart warming to note that the NIC has shown the zeal in mobilising her members to vote massively for APC with the hope for recognition and inclusion in Ondo state politics.
“We have always craved a sense of belonging and due recognition as an integral part of Ondo State regardless our limitations, including language barrier and other cultural values . Notwithstanding, today, a majority of us can speak Akure and other ethnic language including dialect in diverse tongues. We have since acclamatized and acculturated ourselves in the practice of festivals in Ondo State.
For this purpose, we unanimously agree to push support for Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, SAN haven blazed the trail in performance with his supportive wife, Betty Akeredolu who never sleeps. Indeed, for any successful man making waves, ask the wife questions. This is unprecedented in the history of Nigeria and Ondo State where non-indigenes coalesce, resolve and resolutely agreed to push supportfor a candidate of their choice
“We have keenly observed the mutual relationship and therefore, we wish to express our gratitude and further, appreciate and applaud our own Mama D-gital whose idea is carrying everyone along” Chief Pius added.
Chief Mrs. Betty Akeredolu had always gone behind the scene to cover gaps and fill up spaces. Evidently, the aggrieved members of ALL PROGRESSIVE CONGRESS have always found succor around her for generous attention and quick response to their yearnings.Equally, all marginalized PROGRESSIVES in the party are always around Mama Digital for hope.
These are members who have been with Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu from the hey days through ACN IN 2012 UNTIL APC IN 2016. Both indigenes and non-indigenes alike.
Betty Akeredolu has always provided support and assuaged the pains of these aggrieved group of persons. She is able to achieve this feat through her platform ARABIRIN GRASSROOTS MOVEMENT. Although the Igbo, Hausa and Ebira all have SPECIAL ADVISERS & ASSISTANT TO MR GOVERNOR, their members yet complain about neglect. Other than sharing pecks in rice and ram during festive period, Mrs. Akeredolu like her projects, got a data base of members online for adequate representation and proper allocation of resources. We have started online registration like its working for ondowidows.care.ng. She explained.
“Mama digital is the nexus with profound understanding of grassroots politics and we make bold to identify with her. She’s always arms-ready to welcome, encourage and support our cause. We say thank you mummy as we jointly echoe and chant AKETI 4+4=8”.
Finally, in her good will message to the people, she expressed gratitude, “this approach is an advantage in harvesting more non-indigenes towards the re-election bid of Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, SAN. I thank you all for pledging support and going all out for this purpose. May you all reap the good works in more beneficial projects. I can assure you that Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu SAN will not relent in his efforts to better our wellbeing and welfare. Before now, the non-indigenes had no shape or form in Ondo State but through your efforts, we have successfully regulated all activities in this regards to engender equal development and political development. Beyond election period, the non-indigenes will remain relevant and useful”. Thank you all!