The Minister of Interior, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola, has said that he does not belong in the class of politicians who run up and down to pursue political ambitions.
Aregbesola spoke on the evening of Tuesday, 26 May, 2021 at a virtual colloquium with the theme: Africa: Interrogating the Leadership Questions which was organized by a Lagos based media consulting organization, Proumou Media Consulting, to celebrate his 64th birthday.
The minister, who was Governor of Osun State for eight years, said he has never on his own sought political offices but strictly on the urge of his leaders.
Asked by a participant at the event whether he was truly scheming to become Nigeria’s next President in 2023, Aregbesola said he would not respond to the question because 2023 is not in his thinking at the moment.
He said, “I have no response to that. I belong to a group of focused, serious politicians who don’t on their own just jump up and pursue ambitions, I have never done that before and I wont start that now.”
Others who spoke at the event include: Poet, Odia Ofeiumun; the Head of the Department of History at the University of Ibadan, Prof Olutayo Charles Adesina; the Director Centre for Advanced and Professional Studies, Prof Anthony Kila; the daughter of the late MKO Abiola and founder of Women in Africa, Hafsat Abiola-Costello; the former representative of Delta State in the Niger Delta Development Commission and Poet, Dr. Ogaga Ifowodo; and former Deputy Governor of Osun, Mrs. Grace Titi Laoye-Ponle.
Speakers agreed at the event that leadership have the quick responsibility to change focus if only to rescue the continent from an impending doom.
They queried the style of leadership across Africa which makes it hard for citizens not to realize their potentials despite the many opportunities that abound.
Abiola-Cotello said, “One thing to reflect on is the doctors saving lives; those many that are saving lives in the United States, United kingdom, in South Africa and all over the world, they are from Nigeria.
“There was a doctor, where there was something wrong with the baby in the womb and they had to do surgery while the baby was in the mother’s womb. That doctor that did that surgery was Nigerian.”