By Michael Ogunsina
In the vibrant state of Oyo, a transformational shift is underway, steering the trajectory of politics and governance towards a promising future. Spearheading this revolutionary movement is Governor Seyi Makinde, a visionary leader who recognizes that the future is not a distant destination but an unfolding reality that demands proactive action. Unprecedented in its scope and foresight, his approach to governance has revolved around one key principle – the empowerment and involvement of young people in politics and leadership. This youth-friendly model has ignited a paradigm shift, allowing young leaders from all walks of life to rise above political affiliations and ethnic alliances, with the singular goal of shaping a better Oyo State and, by extension, a stronger nation.
Governor Seyi Makinde’s leadership style can be characterized by an unwavering commitment to the youth. He understands that the youth embody the potential for transformation and progress, and their active engagement in politics and governance is essential for a thriving society. It is this understanding that has led him to provide platforms, opportunities, and privileges to young people throughout his tenure.
Under Governor Makinde’s stewardship, young leaders have been elevated to strategic positions in Oyo State, breaking age barriers and redefining the boundaries of conventional leadership. Names like Asiwaju Seun Fakorede, Victor Dideoluwa Lolade Ajibola, Kazeem Bolarinwa Ibadanpride, Lamide, Jesse, and many others serve as testament to the Governor’s unwavering support for young talent. Remarkably, some of these young appointees were barely 30 when they assumed their roles during Omituntun 1.0, and they have been reappointed to continue their valuable contributions in Omituntun 2.0.
One of the significant milestones achieved under Governor Makinde’s watch is the emergence of young leaders in the State House of Assembly. By endorsing and supporting young candidates during the 2019 elections, the Governor played a pivotal role in the ascension of Rt. Hon. Adebo Ogundoyin to become the Youngest Speaker of a state legislature in Nigeria. This historic achievement not only signifies a shift in political dynamics but also sets a precedent for other states to emulate.
Governor Seyi Makinde’s vision extends beyond party politics. He has strategically positioned young leaders in various crucial offices, personal aides, and even his kitchen cabinet, thereby entrusting them with the responsibility of shaping policies and decisions. This deliberate move represents an investment in the future of Oyo State, nurturing the next generation of leaders to take the reins of power confidently.
In addition to fostering young talent in leadership roles, Governor Makinde’s administration has implemented several youth-friendly policies and initiatives. These include investment in education, skills development programs, job creation, and the promotion of a digital ecosystem. By equipping young people with the necessary tools and resources, the Governor is paving the way for a brighter and more prosperous future for the entire state.
In Governor Seyi Makinde, Oyo State has found a trailblazing leader who exemplifies youth-friendly governance. His unwavering commitment to empowering young people and providing them with the platform to showcase their abilities has set a precedent for leadership across the nation.
As the baton of leadership is steadily passed on to the younger generation, the future of Oyo State appears exceptionally promising. The legacy of Governor Makinde’s youth-centric governance will undoubtedly resonate for generations to come, shaping a society where the leaders of tomorrow are nurtured, valued, and empowered today.
Michael Ogunsina is the State Youth Leader and Acting Spokesperson of the People’s Democratic Party in Oyo State.