‘How We Won Ado-Odo/Ota Massively For Gov. Dapo Abiodun’! – Hon Waliu Taiwo Speaks


A former Ogun State Commissioner for Works and the current Chairman of Ogun State House of Assembly Service Commission, Hon. Waliu Taiwo, has countered the latest outbursts of a journalist and media aide to former governor of Ogun State, Otunba Gbenga Daniel, Mr. Steve Oliyide, who wrote that Governor Dapo Abiodun of Ogun State was not duly re-elected in the March 18, 2023 General Elections.
In this interview he granted us recently, Hon. Taiwo speaks on the achievements of the Governor, especially in Ado-Odo/Ota Local Government area of the state, where Oliyide alleged election was massively rigged for the Governor. Excerpt….


You are one of the leaders of the APC in Ado-Odo/Ota Local Government and a journalist, Steve Oliyide said that the party did not win the Governorship Election in the local government and that it was rigged?

I don’t know where he got that information from. Was Steve Oliyide in Ado-Odo/Ota area during the election? He was not in here and how did he know that they rigged the election. People would just sit down and cook up stories, probably they are trying to satisfy their paymasters. There is no doubt that the Governorship Election in Ogun State was very tough. I personally knew that the election would be very tough and I used to tell the people around me that the election would be tough, but that Governor Dapo Abiodun would eventually win. That was exactly what happened. We really prepared for it, apart from our House of Assembly candidates that moved round, we the leaders followed them to the CDAs, CDCs and we tried to let them know what the present Governor has done. Unfortunately, the opposition were able to manipulate members of the public such that people continued to say that what has the Governor done, not knowing what Prince Dapo Abiodun has done in Ota. There was a time, when things were so bad and Lagos-Abeokuta Expressway was impassable. You couldn’t come to Ota or leave the place. The Governor came to Ota and provided alternative roads by constructing roads to AIT and another one leading to Ikola so that anybody going to Abule Egba, FESTAC, Apapa and other places didn’t need to go through the express. All the feeder roads were gone because the Lagos-Abeokuta Expressway is a federal government road. Later, the road from Iyana Iyesi to under Sango Bridge was almost impassable. Coming from Iyana Iyesi to Oju Ore would take you three hours. I remember, when Prince Dapo Abiodun came for campaign for the local government election at Honda area, we intentionally made him to pass through the road to under bridge in Sango. When he got to the front of Domino Pizza, the road was bad. He saw it and he did the road before the last election. They are federal roads, but the people of the state pass through the roads. Remember that the same APC is at the the federal level. He could not do what Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu did when, he was Lagos State governor and the PDP was ruling at the federal level. Then Ikorodu road was bad, and Tinubu now put a signpost that “Please, bear with us, this road belongs to the Federal Government.” But the Governor of Ogun State cannot do that because his party is at the federal level and the people do not know the difference between the federal and the state. He embarked on the construction of Joju Road and Lagos-Abeokuta Road was so bad such that you could spend a whole day around Owode and Iyana Ilogbo Road, when coming from Abeokuta. Governor Dapo Abiodun then made efforts to meet the Governor of Lagos State and they met the Minister of Works and Housing, Mr. Babatunde Raji Fashola. He also approached SUKUK Fund, which gave money to Julius Berger that spent about three months to repair parts of the road. Ado-Odo/Ota extends to Agbara-Igbesa, Lusada, and other places, and from there industries were relocating to Shagamu. The Governor embarked on the construction of the roads there, which is the costliest project this government has done. Moreso, Ado-Odo, Ikoga-Badagry Road had been neglected before Governor Dapo Abiodun came. These are apart from the renovation of classrooms, hospitals and others. So, these projects can speak for themselves. When one side of the express was completed, the other side was too bad, there was a day the Governor wanted to visit the area and Ijoko Ota to Under Bridge Sango was another nightmare, it was terrible. Majority of us did not want him to come because we knew the embarrassment he would face there. People were so bittered, but when he met the politicians, he was hailed. He then came down and we advised that he should go back to the vehicle, when we were going to Ijoko. As we were going, we got to where we saw something like lagoon on the road, around Plaza Junction. I pitied the Governor, and that day, I hate to be a Governor. You need to see the way the people were talking and abusing him. But the man took time to explain to them and he told them that he had been talking with the Minister of Works and that if the Minister didn’t do it, he would do it. That was a Saturday and to my surprise, on Monday, I saw him in Abeokuta and I was trying to dodge him because of the embarrassment he faced in my area, he saw me and said “Chairman, come.”
He said “eku ana,” and I said it’s now there days. I then apologized to him for what happened, he said no, that he took what happened as if nothing happened and he said that he would have done the same thing if he were in their shoes. He then told me that he had ordered contractors to move to the place immediately. The following day, I saw him in Ifo during the Fidau prayer for the father of Rt. Hon. Oluomo, the Speaker of the Ogun State House of Assembly. He called me again and said that he would fix the road from Sango to Ijoko and the one that leads to Alagbole, and Ojodu. Go and see those places and you will see people moving there. After Julius Berger completed the other side from Ilepa to Toll Gate, it remained the other side coming from Lagos. The Governor took over the road and awarded it to another contractor, not Julius Berger. Go to the front of Sango garage now and see what he has done. Some people once organised themselves and protested that the Governor should fix Ado-Odo/Ota road, but one would have expected them to come out now and thank him for fixing the road. But the opposition was using them. There is nothing wrong in that because the rest of us from Ota too did not enjoy the road then. But now the hold up has disappeared, Joju Road has been completed, and Animashaun Area too has been done. I opened that road as Commissioner for Works in Ogun State. But because they were doing flyover in Sango some heavy vehicles were passing the road. Now, it has been fixed. You will remember that COVID-19 took about a year of the government of Governor Dapo Abiodun and EndSARS also took about five months, which is almost one and a half years, take that away from three and a half years, what you will have is two years and he did all those things in Ota. So, what are you talking about.

Steve Oliyide was particular about the roads, probably because he did not go to Ota regularly, he didn’t know that the roads have been fixed

….That is why you should not take him serious. May be the last time he came to Ota was about two years ago. Whoever has been to Ota in the last one year would know that the nightmare had disappeared. Oliyide should come and tell us, which road he is talking about; is it Lagos-Abeokuta Expressway, Ijoko Road or Ota-Idiroko Road. It appears he doesn’t know what he is saying. Of course, Steve Oliyide is somebody I know very well, he is like a younger brother to me. So, I know what is responsible for his outbursts.

You know he is very close to Senator-elect of Ogun East, Otunba Gbenga Daniel, he is his media officer

….Well, I don’t want to comment seriously on that, but I know what is going on. May be he knows what he is looking for and he was not properly managed. I know that the Chief Press Secretary to the Governor, Kunle Somorin Tunji Egbetokun, myself and the state Commissioner for Information, Waheed Odusile, we had a meeting with him, with Malik Ibitoye, that we should bring them into the governor’s media team, including Bolaji Adeniji. So it’s a lesson that we should know how to manage ourselves. He waited enough and he was not managed well.

Some people said the Senator-elect of Ogun West, Senator Solomon Adeola Olamilekan aka Yayi helped a lot in Ota and that people are pushing that he should have his eyes in Ogun State Governorship in 2027, probably he helped to deliver Ota, is that true?

Any man that has the spirit of God will know that Senator Solomon Adeola Olamilekan (Yayi) contributed a lot the success of Ogun West, not to that of Ado-Odo/Ota alone. But if you want me to limit it to Ado-Odo/Ota, I can tell you many things he did that helped us in the area. When he came, he started with empowerment, he did one for about 500 people in Ogun West and almost 200 people benefitted from Ota. They came home with various items such as sewing machines, dryers, burners with cylinders, generators, and make-up kits. He did another one for about 3,500 people out of which about 1,000 people benefitted from our local government. He did another empowerment for about 5,500 Iyalojas, people from all the markets in Ado-Odo/Ota benefitted and they came home with N25,000 each. On infrastructures, in Ado-Odo/Ota, he donated about nine transformers, he gave the communities one million naira each for the installations. After that, he did a very big empowerment, when elections were approaching. About 4,000 people benefitted, they went home with generators, sewing machines, make-up kits, dryers and so on. Some people were given cash of N80,000 each to start businesses. I know we have issues along Itele axis that we don’t know how to handle. When I was commissioner for works, I opened up the place, it was only former governor Gbenga Daniel that constructed the road from Ota to Ayobo-Itele. The road is no more there, so we don’t know what to do. It was one of the conditions Olota of Ota spoke about towards the end of October that before December something must be done. Truly, they’ve started doing it. Yayi started that, we invited the CDC, when they wanted to flag it off. From Ota axis here, they started from Ayobo-Ayetoro axis and people appreciated the efforts. Go and see the pattern of any vote that came from there. Also before the Governorship Election, Yayi met with all the royal fathers in Ado-Odo/Ota at the Olota’s palace where he assured them that the governor (Dapo Abiodun) will attend to all their needs in the various communities. He also did empowerment for the Obas an Baales. So,what are they talking about? They are talking about rigging, is it thumbprinting or what, is it possible to do that one now? You cannot rig again with BVAS, the only rigging that can happen now is if they fight and they cancel the votes. You cannot remove or add. So, I don’t know what he is talking about. Steve Oliyide has relocated to Ibadan, he should come home and see that things have changed. He is someone that I respect so much and I know many years ago, when we used to be together.

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