Emerging as the Dominant Force in Oyo Politics

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On December 29, 2023, marking seven months into his second term, Governor Seyi Makinde emerged as a transformative force in Oyo State politics. Breaking the second term jinx, previously set by Abiola Ajimobi in 2015, Makinde’s victory carried a distinct narrative.

Unlike his predecessor, who rode on the APC’s bandwagon effects in 2015, Makinde, operating under the PDP platform, independently secured victory on March 18, 2023. His charismatic personality and popularity played a pivotal role in influencing Oyo State’s votes in favor of President Bola Tinubu during the presidential election, as well as securing his own re-election during the governorship poll.

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Remarkably, Makinde navigated the political landscape, defeating formidable opponents and overturning expectations set by President Tinubu’s widespread success in the region. Winning in 31 local councils and securing all state Assembly seats, he showcased political mastery.

Notably, Makinde achieved this victory without the support of major PDP stakeholders and even individuals like Rashidi Ladoja, highlighting his independence and personal appeal. His earlier decision to back Joseph Tegbe over Senator Kola Balogun stirred pre-election concerns but proved inconsequential as Makinde triumphed convincingly.
Makinde’s political prowess continued post-election, demonstrated in his handling of the former Chairman of Park Management System (PMS), Alhaji Mukaila Lamidi, alias Auxiliary. Despite concerns of crisis perpetuation, Makinde effectively silenced Auxiliary, leading to a decline in violence in Oyo motor parks.

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Termed the “Lionel Messi of modern-day politics” and likened to the biblical David, Makinde’s dominance extends beyond his electoral triumphs. His influence transcends party politics, with the ruling PDP seemingly revolving around him. Notable voices from the opposition parties have been muted, and the Oyo political landscape appears under his firm control.

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As Makinde cements his position as a powerful political figure, his ability to freely engage with governors across political divides reflects uncommon traits in office. The report portrays him as a giant killer in Oyo state politics, solidifying his status as a transformative force shaping the political narrative in the Pace Setters state.

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