29th April, 2011
On 29 May, the Southwest will officially return to the fold of the progressives, with the victory of the Action Congress of Nigeria, ACN, in Ogun and Oyo states, due to the unimpressive performance of the sitting governors in the gubernatorial elections held across the country on 26 April.
The ACN, last Tuesday, reclaimed the most sophisticated political zone from the conservative forces that have held on to it since 2003, with the results declared by the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, indicating that the party won the governorship election in both states.
The takeover of these states came as a relief to progressive politicians who had toiled day and night on the project for years.
In Abeokuta, the Ogun State capital, youths hit the streets in celebration of ACNâ€™s Senator Ibikunle Amosunâ€™s victory over his PDP opponent, Chief Tunji Olurin.
The governor-elect, a chartered accountant and senator between 2003 and 2007 polled 377,487 votes to defeat his closest rival, Adetunji Olurin, of the PDP who polled 188,698 votes.
Residents and indigenes of the state had watched with envy, the transformation taking place in neighbouring Lagos State, wishing that the Lagos experience should be replicated in the states.
But last Tuesday, voters in the state braved all the odds and signed on for progressive transformation by voting for the ACN.
In Oyo State, the assertion that serving governors elected on the platform of the national ruling party, PDP, usually enjoy a guaranteed return at periodic election failed to come to play as the incumbent, Alao Akala, was voted out of office.
He was shoved out by Chief Abiola Ajimobi of the ACN who polled 420,852 votes as against Akalaâ€™s 387,132 votes.
Akala had vowed to break the jinx of the state not returning its sitting governors to office.
The gladiators went to the trenches in a very fierce battle and as the results trickled in, people in the people waited with anxiety and mixed feelings.
When the results were finally made available, it was obvious that Akala could not break the jinx after all.
Senator Ajimobi was declared winner and will carry the progressives’ baton in the pacesetter state.
Now, both states, Ogun and Oyo, have the honours of enjoying quality and sustainable governance, which had eluded them in the last eight years.