Nekan Olateru Olagbegi, Mimiko’s Devoted Disciple
The most critical attribute to the success of any venture is loyalty. Loyalty is very key to business success. This is the more reason why companies would not hesitate to regularly spend hundreds of millions of naira to reward customers that portend brand loyalty in consistent patronage of their products and services. Occasional disloyalty may be permitted if a man that has accustomed his taste bud to “Star” Lager beer chooses to switch to “Trophy” brand for a change. This is far from being the case in politics. Loyalty is far more important in the political sphere because it must be total and unflinching. Loyalty in the political arena must be demonstration of absolute faithfulness and unwavering fidelity to the cause of a political direction. Anything short of this in politics will definitely be frowned at with its attendant severe sanctions.
Experience over time has shown that loyalty is often shown by an average Nigerian politician when the goings are only good. Defection to another political party where bread of politicians could be sumptuously buttered would predominantly dominate their thoughts the moment pecuniary expectations dropped short of being met. The most disappointing aspect of our politics in this side of the world is to see politicians who had hitherto enjoyed tremendous patronages through which they have become emergency billionaire suddenly became sworn enemies of their benefactors. We have become so attuned to the antics of fair weather politicians in our country that it will be difficult to believe we still have few exceptions.
Prince Adenekan Olateru- Olagbegi is one of the very few technocrat cum politician in Ondo state who has chosen to stay blindly loyal to the political cause of Dr Olusegun Mimiko and party supremacy since he venturer into politics in 2006. This is a man that abandoned his comfort zone in the United States of America with the prime intention to better the lots of his people. He began this rescue mission by importing over a million textbooks that were distributed to both primary and secondary school students in the state. This Owo Prince followed up this intervention by bringing into the country containers of medical supplies and equipments that were distributed to the people of the state. Prince Nekan Olagbegi equally thought it necessary to procure a borehole rig which he donated and was used to sink boreholes for his people. The Financial consultant became convinced that more lives could only be touched while in position of authority; for this reason, he jumped into the ship of the Labour Party. Prince Nekan Olagbegi contested the Ondo North Senatorial slot under the Labour Party in 2007 but got robbed of victory. The electoral malfeasance meted out to him was taken with equanimity, but chose to stand by Dr Mimiko while he pursuing his case at the Tribunal. It was in the cause of efforts to reclaim the stolen mandate of Dr Mimiko that Prince Nekan Olagbegi was offered a juicy federal appointment by the late President Umar Musa Yar’Adua. A regular Nigerian politician would have jumped at this offer and gone ahead to declare an elaborate feast to mark his defection to the then ruling PDP from Labour Party where he pitched his tent. But in an unusual show of loyalty, Prince Nekan would rather prefer to decline the offer of federal appointment and stand by Dr Mimiko to lend him all forms of support.
It is note worthy that Prince Nekan Olagbegi remains one of the few very loyal lieutenants of Dr Mimiko that are still in his camp, even after quite a number of them that began the struggle in 2007 had moved to other political parties. The belief and loyalty of this United States trained Accountant to the political philosophy of Dr Olusegun Mimiko leaves no one in doubt. He has been very passionate and firmly convinced that the incumbent governor has all it takes to leave Ondo state far better than he met it.
Prince Nekan was on a faithful mode at the sideline of governance in the state for five whole years until Dr Mimiko decided to cash in on his intellect. The unassuming Owo Prince hit the ground running upon his appointment as the Coordinator of Public Private Partnership. Within a short period of two year, the economic complexion of the state has taken a turn for the better as a result of the sterling performance of this man of few words but greater deliveries. The Akure Shopping Mall where most residents of the town now enjoy great shopping experience is the least of Prince Nekan’s achievements as the PPP Coordinator. The Deep Sea Port which will in a short while turn out the biggest business venture ever in Ondo State has been made possible by Prince Adenekan Olagbegi. The proposed Free Trade Zone in the state has been pushed to a level of reality through the dogged interventions of Prince Nekan Olagbegi. Ditto for the bitumen project that is billed come on stream anytime soon. The Owo Prince has leveraged on his vast connection in the international business environment to attract core investors for these projects. The Ifon Ceramics has gotten a new core investor and the company is sure to hit market with its products before the year runs out. I should be quick to posit that none of the successes recorded by Prince Olagbegi could have been possible without the unflinching supports offered by Dr Olusegun Mimiko.
It quite agrees with commonsense that a man of unusual loyalty should get his fair reward. This is coupled with the fact that the quest to position Ondo state for economic prosperity could at best be delivered by the driver of such idea. However, it will smack off absurdity on the part of anyone who canvasses that Prince Olagbegi should be rewarded with the gubernatorial ticket of PDP only on the account of his long term loyalty to the Governor. Far from it! Prince Nekan is eminently qualified to aspire for the position the highest position in the state. He is such a fantastic brand that will undoubtedly make good electoral sales. He is a tested and trusted hand. He is a man of enviable integrity and an individual whose capacity and ability to deliver can never be in doubt. In addition, he enjoys the advantage of being from the Owo-Ose axis of the state. This is an axis that has not had the chance to produce a governor since our return to democratic rule in 1999. It is expected that PDP will concede its ticket to this axis in the interest of justice, equity and fairness. Going forward, Prince Adenekan Olagbegi has made a clear statement that he is equipped to take the Sunshine state to the much desired height of financial independence; even in the face of dwindling allocation from the federal purse. The truism which encourages that a man who is faithful with little can as well be trusted with higher responsibility, cannot be faulted if alluded to the case of Prince Adenekan Olagbegi.
The rarity of faithful loyalty of Prince Nekan Olagbegi is a worthy attribute that should be sufficiently recompensed with commensurate political reward.