Since the first day I read the profile of Dr. Kayode Fayemi in 2006, I had instantly concluded he would be a democrat, hence I keyed into the ‘Oya to’ slogan, which was then popular with his followers in Moba Local Government. I was approaching 20 when he first came but through the persistence of his followers, especially the late Hon Saliu Adeoti, Fayemi appeared to me like a different breed among Nigerian politicians. Besides, his story around pro-democracy activities ‘captured’ me and many Ekiti youths. This explains why his journey to government house before and after the re-run election which pitched him against Engr Segun Oni was like a movement. I digress and give this background to let my readers know my early acquaintance with the political foundation of the subject of this small write up.
Has politics changed Fayemi? Was it power that changed him? Was he a pretender when we thought he was a messiah? Is it a case of stoop to conquer or a carrot-and-stick approach? All these keep roaring in my brain as I review my life and fate under Fayemi in the last two years.
As a fresh graduate from the department of Physical and Health Education of the Obafemi Awolowo University, I had jumped at the window of opportunity provided by the then Governor Ayodele Fayose at the twilight of his office in 2017. I took part in various stages of the employment process and was given employment to teach at the Ekiti Baptist High School, Igede Ekiti. A year into a teaching career which I had thought would be for decades was truncated by Dr Fayemi administration. I took it in good faith when many spirited Ekiti patriots appealed to us that the process was fraught with inadequacies and that Fayemi would repeat the exercise in a more transparent way.
I believed because I thought Dr. Fayemi was a democrat. I was wrong.
As Fayemi was resuming in office for his second term, I was also resuming in the University of Lagos for my Masters Degree. While rounding off the programme, Ekiti State government announced the beginning of another employment process. I applied into both Civil Service and Teaching Service Commission. I saw opportunity in teaching and I saw at the Sports Council. I went for the exam and passed but not without some challenges.
I had become pregnant during my final examination in UNILAG and I was going about with my protruding stomach. This was the situation when the date of Ekiti Exam was announced. It felled in between two remaining papers at UNILAG. Against the advice of loved ones, I had jumped into a bus on a Friday after exam in Lagos and headed to Ekiti. I finished the Ekiti Exam and was returning on Sunday when the bus I was travelling in had accident along Lagos/ Ibadan express road. I survived it and got to Lagos late in preparation for my remaining examination on Monday Examination.
You can then imagine how I felt when I sailed though in both the UNILAG and Ekiti Examinations.
Now almost a year after the examination, ‘mum’ has remained the word on the part of government. The job opportunities that were then being celebrated on both online and offline platforms, have suddenly become a process skewed in secrecy. Initially, I thought it had been jettisoned until information reached me that Ekiti State Government, under the watch of the ‘O yato’ politician, a supposed democrat, a supposed lover of due process, a former minister, governor of governors and aspiring President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, letters are now being distributed descriptively to those perceived as sons and daughters of influential people in government and friends of the administration. Did I hear you ask what becomes my fate; A poor daughter of a tailor?
I decided to take this to the public arena not because of millions of naira that were collected from poor Ekiti youths to obtain forms at the beginning but because of the stories flying around that the process had been hijacked from government? Who hijacked it? Could it be market men and women or leaders of NURTW?
Mr. Governor, over to you sir, we voted for you for good not to be shortchanged. Even when your detractors said you were coming in to vent your anger on Ekiti people over your ugly experience in 2014, some of us were out there campaigning with the hope that you were coming to give us the best. Please safe the souls of sons and daughters of Ekiti who know nobody in Government.
Now, I’m coming to term with the entire scenario, a week after the election, Erelu Bisi Fayemi had painted a comparative pictures of two Sundays –the bleak one in 2014 and the bright one in 2018, to reflect how the first family felt about losing the 2014 election. Now if indeed Erelu has decided to always speak ‘above whispers’ since 1998 as he revealed in one of her press interview, I think the time to speak in ‘loud whispers’ is now.
*P.S: As I’m working out the total money generated through the process and how those who didn’t pass the examination are now collecting letters through the backdoor simply because they are sons and daughters of somebodies, I appeal to those who passed the transparent examination that was said to be handled by a consulting firm to inbox me. I bet the second part of this would be mind-blowing and reveal to Ekiti people how far Dr. Fayemi has changed from being a democrat and an activist to a true Nigerian politician who will not say what they will do but will promise what they will not do.
I confided in two people before coming out this morning and one of them said it would mar my chance of getting job in Ekiti, rather than making me. Again, I’m not bothered and ready to face the consequence, after all, it will right some wrongs and help some people.
Thank God, I’m now a disciple of Erelu Fayemi for speaking ‘above whispers’.