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OSUN: The dancing senator, second time lucky and other things to know about incoming Gov Adeleke

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OSUN GOV POLL: Adeleke the dancing senator wins PDP ticket

The governorship candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Senator Ademola Adeleke, was on Sunday morning declared the winner of the Osun State governorship election held on Saturday across the 30 local government areas of the state.

In the final results announced, Adeleke defeated his closest rival and incumbent Governor Gboyega Oyetola, the candidate of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), polling 402,979 votes to Oyetola’s 375,077 votes.

A breakdown of the results by local government areas also showed that Adeleke won in 17 LGAs while Oyetola won in 13 LGAs

Other candidates who took part in poll across other political parties included former Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives, Yusuf Lasun of the Labour Party (LP), Dr Oyegoke Omigbodun of the Social Democratic Party (SDP), Dr Akin Ogunbiyi of the Accord Party, (AD), Munirudeen Atanda of the Action Democratic Party (ADP), and Lukman Awoyemi of Allied Peoples’ Movement (APM), among others, did not muster enough votes to challenge the two main candidates.

The man Adeleke and the controversies

The governor-elect of Osun State, Ademola Nurudeen Jackson Adeleke, popularly called the ‘Dancing Senator’ is one Nigerian politician who is not new to controversies as he has been dogged with one controversial issue or the other most of his political life.

Adeleke’s tenure as a senator representing the Osun-West senatorial district at the National Assembly between 2017 and 2019 was mired in serious controversy that swept him aside at the end of the day.

Even his first attempt to become the governor of the state in 2018 was truncated due to a scandal that emerged over his educational qualifications.

According to his profile, Adeleke commenced his primary education at Methodist Primary School, Surulere, Lagos State, before he relocated to the old Oyo State and attended Nawarudeen Primary School, Ikire.

He progressed to The Seventh Day Adventist Secondary School, Ede also in the then Old Oyo State and later moved to Ede Muslim Grammar School Ede, where he finished his secondary school education before moving to the United States.

Read also: PDP’s Adeleke wins Osun guber election, defeats incumbent Gov Oyetola

While in the US, Adeleke reportedly started his higher studies at Jacksonville State University, Alabama, where he majored in criminal justice and with minor in political science.

However, it was the controversies surrounding his educational qualification that made him return to school and got enrolled at Atlanta Metropolitan State College in the United States, where he obtained a Bachelor of Science degree in criminal justice in 2021.

A scandal that almost derailed that political career of Senator Adeleke emerged when he was accused and charged to the Osogbo high court for forging his secondary school testimonial and WAEC result to cancel his governorship candidacy.

The testimonial Adeleke submitted to INEC dated July 20, 1988, which stated that he attended the Ede Muslim Grammar School, Osun State, had revealed that the state was not in existence at the time.

Also, the SSCE results indicated in the testimonial showed that the mode of examination wasn’t existing in the year 1981.

Another testimonial with the Ede Muslim High school dated 2018, indicates that the principal who signed the 1988 testimonial also signed the 2018 testimonial, leading to the arrest of the principal by the police.

Adeleke, an astute businessman and administrator, once served as an executive director of Guinness Nigeria Plc from 1992-1999, and was also the group executive director at Pacific Holdings Limited from 2001 to 2016.

Prior to joining Pacific Holdings Limited, Ademola had worked with Quicksilver Courier Company in Atlanta, Georgia, US, as a service contractor from 1985–1989.

He progressed to Origin International LLC, Atlanta, Georgia, US, a flavours and fragrance manufacturing company as vice president from 1990 to 1994.

Adeleke started his political career in 2001 alongside his late brother, Senator Isiaka Adeleke, who was also a governor in the state.

When his brother died in 2017, Adeleke contested at the Osun West senatorial district by-election and emerged as the winner under the PDP.

In 2018, Adeleke emerged as the governorship candidate of PDP in Osun State and ran for the governorship election against eventual winner Gboyega Oyetola of APC and Iyiola Omisore of SDP.

Though Adeleke was leading in the polls, the election was later declared inconclusive by the Independent Electoral Commission (INEC) and a rerun slated on September 27, 2018, which was later won by Oyetola.

Adeleke contested the result describing the election as a “coup” and went to court but on March 22, 2019, a tribunal sitting in Abuja declared Adeleke the winner of the election.

Adeleke proceeded to the Supreme Court which also affirmed Oyetola as the authentic winner of the 2018 Osun State governorship election on July 5, 2019.

Having won in Saturday’s poll, Adeleke is now the governor-in-waiting for Osun State, to run the affairs of the state for a four-year term. A lot is expected on him to lift the state out of the number of problems he identified during the campaigns, which he promised to reverse, and bring development to the state.

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