HomeOpinionsA Defence for Akeredolu, By Akaraiwe (SAN)

A Defence for Akeredolu, By Akaraiwe (SAN)

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There has been some raucous critical of Akeredolu as parallels are drawn between his calling for the resignation, when he was NBA President, of President Yar’ Adua due to debilitating ill-health and his current health challenges as governor and failure to transmit power to his Deputy-Governor Aiyeditawa.

As one who had a ringside view of events at the time, nothing could be further from the truth in respect of the parallels now being drawn.

Akeredolu’s NBA executive, at all times material, knew that President Yar Adua was a decent man who had lost the capacity to take decisions including resigning from office. And upon those premises, made strident calls directed at Yar Adua’s inner circle, “The Cabal,” for his resignation, or transmission of authority to Vice-President Jonathan since it was apparent that he could no longer carry out the duties of President of Nigeria.

Perhaps, Governor Akeredolu is in the same state of not being able to take the decision to resign himself. I know not. Although when I spoke with him by phone some six months ago, he was as compos mentis as ever.

If Mr. Akeredolu were to be fully aware, I have no doubt that he will do what is right for the people of Ondo. Not for Governor Akeredolu any shenanigans (a word I learnt from him). I do not think that Aketi will tolerate from his inner circle the sort of mistake Yar Adua’s Cabal made.

Why am I so certain of this? In early December 2009, Mr. Akeredolu SAN, as NBA President, called me to his office at the then NBA Secretariat in Victoria Island, Lagos and solemnly intimated me, eyeball to eyeball, of his intention to resign the NBA Presidency on December 10, 2009 instant during the NBA NEC slated to hold at Enugu that day IF the committee of former NBA Presidents chaired by TJ Onomigbo-Okpoko SAN indicted him over the then crisis going on within his NBA national executive. As it turned out, he wasn’t indicted.

If a 54 year old Mr. Akeredolu was principled enough to contemplate resigning as NBA President if he was indicted, a 68 year old Governor Akeredolu would more than happily resign the governorship if that was the way forward. We do not learn bad habits in old age. Akeredolu is a supremely self-confident and principled man who does not fear to do the right thing.

The challenge as always, when the principal person is too ill to take his own decisions are the political associates and close friends with their geopolitical calculations of “it is the turn of our zone, so how can he resign, so it goes to another zone?”

But I expect his family and friends like us to rise up and implement the Aketi principle-centred philosophy over and above the wishes of party and geopolitical aficionados.

Ikeazor Akaraiwe (SAN) was NBA 1st Vice-President when Akeredolu was NBA President (2008-2010).

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