The Minister of Interior, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola whose absence at the Osun State governorship election was conspicuous has waxed both Biblical and philosophical in his response to the defeat of his party, the All Progressives Congress (APC) by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), saying God gives power to whoever He desires.
Aregbesola’s preferred candidate, Alhaji Moshood Adeoti lost the APC governorship primary, and also failed to overturn the decision of the electors through a judicial process that lasted until the eve of the election. Incumber Governor, Alhaji Gboyega Oyetola won the APC ticket but lost the general election to PDP’s Senator Ademola Adeleke on Saturday.
In a post titled Osun le tente (Osun on the precipice) on his social media handles, Aregbesola, a Muslim, shared a Bible verse, Daniel 4:17 which exalts God’s power to place control in the hands of whoever He wishes. “This matter is by the decree of the watchers, and the demand by the word of the Holy ones: to the intent that the living may know that the most High ruleth in the kingdom of men, and giveth it to whomsoever he will, and setteth up over it the basest of men.”
Aregbesola is Oyetola’s predecessor but the latter was not the choice of the Minister in 2018. And when the Governor Oyetola was been positioned for a second term, Aregbesola had a public disagreement with former Lagos State Governor, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu. Aregbesola travelled out of the country on Friday for what his aides said was an official assignment.
He had remained silent on development in the state after his outburst against Tinubu in February.
Aregbesola’s media adviser, Sola Fasure reportedly said that his boss was not invited to work for Oyetola’s second-term bid, and was not named in the campaign team set up by the party.
Adeleke, who lost by a margin of 482 votes to Oyetola in 2018, established a gap of 28,344 votes this time. Adeleke polled 403,371 votes as against 375,027 by Governor Oyetola.
Aregbesola accused Tinubu and ex-Governor of Osun State, Chief Bisi Akande of forcing Oyetola on the people, against popular will. Though Aregbesola made moves to reconcile with his political boss Tinubu, the efforts yielded no result.
A few hours to the governorship election, a faction of the APC, The Osun Progressives, which is led by the Minister, released a statement noting that despite the fued, its members would remain in the party.
This was after a stalwart of the APC and one of the closest loyalists to Aregbesola and a TOP mobiliser, Kolapo Alimi defected to the PDP.