By Kunle Oyatomi
When beggars die, there are no comets seen;
The heavens themselves blaze forth the death of princes-William Shakespeare in Julius Caesar
Lately, our party, All Progressives Congress, APC, has lost three such ‘princes’ and the comets, true to the prescient observation of the Bard of Avon, are glowing in the form of tributes all over the land. Just as many compatriots have not been able to hold back tears to mourn the departed, the tailed heavenly bodies have not also been wanting in glowing to celebrate the exit of the trio of Adebisi Adejare, Adebayo Osinowo and Quadri Owonikoko.
Adejare was the tenacious, tireless and trusted Deputy Chief of Staff (Administration) to Governor Adegboyega Oyetola of Osun State. He was part of the team the governor assembled to sail the ship of the state through tempestuous waters and the result is what we are witnessing today: a stable polity with indices both insiders and outsiders are hailing as signs of renaissance. He had suffered ill health for some time. But little did we know that it was the trick of the messenger of death to deal the fatal blow through a quiet appearance in the corner.
Barrister Adejare has been eulogized as “a very good man whose touch of human kindness is unimaginable’’. He will be missed by his family, friends, APC colleagues, and not least by Governor Oyetola, who will always remember the countless occasions that had seen Adejare apply his legal mind to swing fiery debates to an agreeable finish.
But death was not through with visiting APC. For, days after its horror work in Osun, it took a trip to Lagos. Its destination, the home of Adebayo Osinowo, Senator of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. Osinowo, fondly called ‘pepperito’, represented Lagos East on the platform of APC, died of illness linked to Covid-19. A great friend of Osun State, Osinowo identified with the progressive stance of the government and people of the state because of his own faith in politics that centre on unstinting service to the people through representative democracy. He saw this at work in the administration of Aregbesola and Oyetola.
In Lagos and in the upper federal legislative chamber in the nation’s capital, Osinowo is going to be missed for his muscular contribution to the welfare of his people through debates that introduced liberating legislation and succor into the system.
More fatal news came our way with the report that the ‘lively, vivacious’ Quadri Owonikoko had passed on. Known respectfully as ‘Integrity’, Owonikoko was the last Chairman of Olorunda North LCDA in Osun, where the record is that he touched the lives of the grassroots people in numerous memorable ways.
Losing these affable gentlemen to the icy hands of ruthless death in the APC family is sobering national bereavement. The party’s loss amounts to a national loss on account of the fact that APC is the governing party that dwells on the contributions of these members and other party faithful to address the challenges of the people.
We commiserate with the bereaved families of the departed as well as with APC National Leader, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, Governor Oyetola and Prince Gboyega Famodun, Osun APC chairman. Truly, they have sustained grave losses. But is that the close of the narrative? No! Rather, as we join them all to mourn the egress of Adejare, Osinowo and Owonikoko within only a space of one week of each other’s demise, we must all take refuge in the indubitable consolation that these politicians served well to attract the attention of the comets. Any greater reward for service to your people?
Oyatomi is the spokesperson of APC in the state of Osun