With Ondo State Deputy Governor Lucky Aiyedatiwa in an ongoing impeachment battle, Governor Rotimi Akeredolu’s senior aide, Doyin Odebowale, on Wednesday recounted the deputy’s journey into the political limelight while seeking answers about his apparent rivalry with the governor.
Appearing on Channels Television’s Politics Today, Odebowale, who is the governor’s Senior Special Assistant on Special Duties and Strategy, alluded to Aiyedatiwa’s ambitions as Akeredolu’s second term comes to an end in about 17 months.
The lawyer was responding to a question posed about similarities between the circumstances of Aiyedatiwa’s political differences with the governor and those of his predecessor, Agboola Ajayi, who served as deputy governor between 2017 and 2021.
“For as long as you have those who are inordinately ambitious, for as long as you have those who think too much of themselves, then you continue to have this,” Odebowale said.
The governor’s SSA argued that Ajayi wanted to contest against Akeredolu to occupy the coveted seat of power. But the case appeared to be different for Aiyedatiwa, according to Odebowale.
“This one was almost a nonentity, as far as politics in Ondo State is concerned, before he was nominated. I knew him in 2012 or 2013 or thereabout when he came to meet Aketi in Owo,” he said, referring to the governor by his nickname.
Odebowale added that Aiyedatiwa had never held any office before he became the deputy governor.
“I also know that when he was nominated as the representative of the people of the South – my wife’s people – many people protested and Aketi was insistent that ‘let him be the one who killed Jesus,’ Jesus had forgiven him,” he said.
“Aketi said he would be [the deputy governor]. They did not allow him to occupy the office for one day. Aketi said, ‘No, what did he do to you’ and stuff like that.
“So, when that one went to commit political suicide, then it was his luck. He was even bragging: he was lucky, ‘Aiye ti da t’ohun’ and stuff like that. But only he can explain the point at which Aketi became an enemy.”