Ekiti: Olanipekun drums support for Oyebanji
By Samuel Ogunsona
A prominent lawyer, Chief Wole Olanipekun (SAN), has called on Ekiti indigenes at home and in the Diaspora to shelve their political and religious toga and support Governor Biodun Oyebanji in his quest for a sustainable development of the state.
Chief Olanipekun, who stated this in Ikere Ekiti on Saturday, during the 26th edition of the annual Chief Wole Olanipekun Scholarship Scheme and 3rd Olanipekun Empowerment Programme, charged all Ekiti people to contribute their ideas and counsel to the present administration to enable it achieve great success in the development of the state saying ‘Ideas rule the world’.
He commended Governor Oyebanji for being the first Chief Executive of the state to embark on consultation with leaders from the state, regardless of their political affiliation, before being sworn in. He added that that singular step would help him take decisions that would be in the best interest of the state because he would not be bereft of ideas needed to development of the state.
Olanipekun charged the people to contribute their quota to the development of the state, adding that gone were the days when government alone could bring sustainable development to the people because the resources are finite.
He charged the beneficiaries of the scholarship scheme to thank God for whatever they received from him, adding that the most important thing for them is to also lift some other people when God bless them.
“I want to plead with all Ekiti people, let us sheath our swords, I am not a politician, I am a Lawyer, I work across board, but I want to plead with all of us, let us sheath our swords. Four years is around the corner, let us support the people who are there now. We need to move this state forward. I don’t like a situation whereby they are saying we are the poorest or inferior, and when you have human resources, ideas rule the world. When we have human resources, what else, and we have mineral resources everywhere. Tap them, I will support Your Excellency.
“I don’t deceive people, we love you and we are not pretending, I love you, Your Excellency, I am not saying this to dress you in borrowed robe, I am saying this from the bottom of my heart. Very soon, you will become a flagship Governor and we are going to support you. I never received a contract from Ekiti, I give to Ekiti and I will continue to give to Ekiti.
“I register my commitment, my love, my support, whatever God has given me to you. And anytime you need my counsel, I will oblige Your Excellency. All we want is that we want Ekiti to develop, we want Ekiti to grow, when a man is humble, God adds everything to him, and our Governor is humble.
“May I salute all your predecessors in office, I have been close to all of them. You are the first one that immediately after your election, you started visiting Ekiti sons and daughters across board irrespective of political leanings, religious inclinations and ideological divide, you visited me in my office and you have also been communicating because you want ideas.
“For those of us who have been favoured from God, whom we have seen his benevolence, we have to appreciate him by giving back to humanity. Yes, it is good to pray, but it is important to lift someone up.” Olanipekun added.
Governor Oyebanji, in his remarks at the event, commended Chief Olanipekun for his philanthropic strides, which, according to him, had brought succour to many people and households in the state, especially indigent students. “It is not easy to give, or share what you have but Chief has an uncommon grace”.
The Governor called on wealthy people in the state to take a cue from Chief Olanipekun in assisting the less privileged in their areas, stressing that the only thing that would count at the end of the day, are the souls and the people we are able to assist with our resources.
Apparently impressed by Chief Olanipekun’s scholarship programme, the Governor promised to start similar awards for the people of the state using his home town, Ikogosi Ekiti as starting point.
“One lesson I’ve learnt here because I keep challenging myself that okay I’m not as rich as chief but I can start something from Ikogosi and I have made up my mind today. I will start from Ikogosi, I’m going to set up a foundation and I will invite Chief to the launch.
While congratulating the beneficiaries, Oyebanji urged them to continue to excel in their chosen career so they can hold their heads high in the society and be able to do more than their benefactor.
Speaking on behalf of the beneficiaries, Mr Samuel Olowoyo, a Law Student, expressed his appreciation to Chief Olanipekun, saying this is the best time for the event considering the economic reality of the nation.
In attendance at the event were the Deputy Governor, Chief (Mrs) Monisade Afuye, former Deputy Governors – Surveyor Abiodun Aluko and Prof. Olusola Eleka and the Ogoga of Ikere, HRM, Oba Adejimi Adu Alagbado.