Ola Ajayi Ibadan
Oyo State Governor, ‘Seyi Makinde, has vowed that he would be the first governor to hand over to his successor if defeated in the 2023 gubernatorial election.
He said this at the inauguration and commencement of duty service of the 8th President of Christ Apostolic Church Worldwide, Pastor Samuel Olusegun Oladele, held at All Saints Chapel, C.A.C. General Secretariat, Bashorun, Ibadan.
He said, though no governor has ever handed over to his successor, he would break the jinx.
Governor Makinde who has been variously criticized by his political opponents in the state, said, “When we started the democracy we are now enjoying in Oyo State, if you look at all the past governors, none of them has handed over to the successor.”
He said that he was ready to make the difference in Oyo State where, according to him, no governor has handed over to the successor, since the start of the Fourth Republic in 1999.
He recounted that in 2003, Governor Lam Adesina did not attend the handing over ceremony of his successor, Alhaji Rashidi Ladoja; the latter did not also attend the inauguration of his successor, Adebayo Alao-Akala, even as Akala didn’t attend the inauguration of Senator Abiola Ajimobi, who also refused to hand over to the incumbent, Governor Seyi Makinde.
He pledged to be the first governor to do the handover to his successor in the state.
“In the message of the vice president, he said we politicians need to learn how to conduct rancour-free elections. I think it is not just about elections. We have something to learn about even handing over power and making proclamation and ensuring continuity.
” From Alhaji Lam Adesina to Baba Ladoja, there was no handing over. From Baba Ladoja to Governor Akala, no handing over. From Governor Akala to Governor Ajimobi, there was no handing over. From Ajimobi to me, no handover.
“But because we are having a new beginning, and as I am standing on the altar of the Almighty, I will be the first governor to hand over to a successor in Oyo State.”
He said: “The Chairman of the South West Governors picked something from the citation of the 8th President of the CAC Worldwide and he mentioned that his (new president’s) priority is to end the crisis of division that has plagued the church for 30 years.
“I am reading the same thing from a different angle. Our country is at the crossroads right now: the issues of insecurity, banditry, ethnic clashes everywhere. And we know that the leadership of the church or political leaders did not drop from heaven as we are also from this society.
“So, if we are at a crossroads and the new president has said his priority is to end the crisis of division, I think as a nation and people, we, also, from this day, should make it a priority to end the crisis of division in Nigeria.
“The division is not just about the local branches here. The church has branches all over the world. We also need to make it a priority that Nigeria needs to reconcile with the rest of the world and I know it will happen.”
He, however, enjoined all politicians to learn from the transition model of the Christ Apostolic Church, which, he said, is rancour-free and encourages peaceful handing over of power.
Makinde appreciated the leadership of the Christ Apostolic Church for managing the affairs of the Church, praying that God will continue to be with the Church.
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In his own remarks, the Vice President of Nigeria, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo, who was represented by the Aso Rock Chaplain, Rev.Seyi Malomo, commended the Christ Apostolic Church for the smooth process that brought about the inauguration of the 8th President, adding that this is the way it should be.
He said: “I want to commend the Christ Apostolic Church for the smooth process, which has brought the inauguration of the president because this is the way it should be. “Certainly, there is a lot for politicians to learn from the church on how to conduct elections without rancour.
“My prayer for the new president is that his tenure will record greater success in Jesus name.
“I also want to thank the outgoing president for his infallible service to CAC, for the years of glorious and faithful service. You have managed the affairs of CAC with integrity, maturity and fatherly understanding. May Almighty God preserve you for many more years in strength and good health to enjoy your fruit of labour.”
He declared that through the CAC, God has demonstrated that he does not need the highly educated professors or the mighty to do his work and that He can raise the humblest men to do his work.
The VP Said: “The anointing of God in this church has made it such that the humblest of men, even the least educated, can bring the good news of delivering the oppressed from the unseen spirit and even raising the dead.
“Apostle Ayo Babalola remains a testament to this fact.”
He, therefore, enjoined the church to support the new president so that, as one body, the CAC will march forward, grow stronger and move faster to propagate the much-needed gospel of Christ.
The service also had the governor of Ondo State, Arakunrin Rotimi Akeredolu in attendance.
Akeredolu, while addressing the congregation, asked them to work for a new beginning adding that the leadership of the church has been in the trenches for too long.
In attendance was the Chief of Staff to the governor of Osun State, Dr Charles Akinola, who represented his boss, Governor Gboyega Oyetola, a host of royal fathers, government functionaries, pastors and dignitaries from different parts of the world.