If a prophet had prophesied that a man in his forties wearing an oversized Ankara buba and sokoto, dancing up and down to entertain party chieftains and spectators would become a governor of the state, it would have been counted as fake, misleading and untrue prophecy capable of misleading millions of innocent people in the state.
8 years after, the same man identified as Senator Nurudeen Ademola Adeleke is now the governor of Osun State. He was declared the winner of the 2022 Osun State gubernatorial election which took place on 16th July by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) after polling the highest number of votes.
Adeleke, a candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) polled 403,371 votes against his close rival, Adegboyega Oyetola of the All Progressives Congress (APC) who polled 375,027 votes.
Days after the INEC’s pronouncement, Adegboyega Oyetola and his party, All Progressives Congress (APC) approached the Osun election petition tribunal to challenge the outcome of the election over claims of multiple voting and proper documentation of results in some areas.
However, the Osun Election Petition Tribunal is noting witnesses and evidence of the plaintiff (Adegboyega Oyetola and the All Progressives Congress) and the defendant (Ademola Adeleke, the Peoples Democratic Party and Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).
It is equally noting arguments and positions made by all parties involved to form a declaration on the matter presented before the Osun election petition tribunal.
As the good people of Osun State await the declaration/judgment/verdict of the tribunal, WITHIN NIGERIA takes a critical shot on Senator Ademola Adeleke’s struggles to the Bola Ige White House in Abeere, Osogbo.
Senator Ademola Adeleke was almost strange to Osun politics until 2017 when he travelled down to Nigeria following the sad demise of his elder brother, Late Isiaka Adeleke.
Ademola Adeleke was only a mere rally-goer who used to follow his brother to rallies and entertained spectators on stage with his dancing skills before the sad demise of his elder brother, Isiaka Adeleke.
In a viral video, Ademola Adeleke could be seen showing off his skills while dancing to Davido’s song – ‘Kun kere’ at one of the Mega rallies of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the state.
After the successes recorded at the 2014/2015 election such as the victory of Rauf Aregbesola against the then candidate of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Iyiola Omisore and the victory of his elder brother, Isiaka Adeleke who was elected as a senator representing Osun West Senatorial District, he left the shores of the country and travelled to United States of America (USA) to continue his life.
However, the sad demise of his elder brother, Isiaka Adeleke whose death was controversial and implicating was a major turning point for Ademola Adeleke. He wanted to wear the political shoes of his elder brother. He actually wore it, replaced him in the political terrain and became the new face of the Adeleke dynasty in Osun politics.
From ‘rally’ entertainer to senator
When he declared interest to replace his deceased brother at the senate, it was rudely rejected by then Governor Rauf Aregbesola now Minister of Interiors because he wanted to hand over the ticket back to the initial owner, Mudasir Oyetunde Hussein.
Recall that Aregbesola replaced Mudasir Oyetunde Hussein who was Osun West senator (2011 – 2015) with late Isiaka Adeleke as a political compensation after he dumped the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) over internal crisis and irreconcilable differences with Iyiola Omisore, PDP guber candidate in 2014.
Following denial of Osun Chapter of the All Progressives Congress (APC) and its then leader, Rauf Aregbesola, the Adeleke dynasty lured the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), lobbied for the party’s ticket and got it.
Mudasir Oyetunde Hussein, candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) at Osun West Senatorial By-election was defeated woefully and pitiably by Ademola Adeleke of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
Adeleke won nine (9) local governments out of ten (10) leaving Ejigbo, hometown of APC candidate. Being a lively person and his ability to entertain people with his dancing skills at public functions earned him the nickname – ‘Dancing Senator’.
From senator to gubernatorial candidate
Ademola Adeleke popularly known as ‘dancing senator’ on the 16th of April, 2018 declared his interest to contest the September 22 governorship election in Osun State.
Recall that Senator Ademola Adeleke has only spent barely a year in the senate as a replacement for his elder brother, Isiaka who died in April 2017.
When Ademola Adeleke declared his intention to become governor, it created panic within the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP). Some PDP leaders saw him as a threat while others were projecting the Insurance guru, Dr. Akin Ogunbiyi as their preferred choice.
Ogunbiyi’s popularity within the party was sudden, quick and intimidating but it did not last. Before the party primaries, some of Ogunbiyi’s early supporters had switched sides. The primary contest was very stiff, challenging and quite disastrous because it nearly created a sharp division within the party.
But the party was rescued from destruction through the unparallel and untiring efforts of the reconciliation team headed by former Kwara governor, Bukola Saraki.
Against the calculations of his political enemies, Senator Ademola Adeleke won the gubernatorial primaries and became the flagbearer of the Peoples Democratic Party in the 2018 Osun gubernatorial election.
Following his victory at the 2014 PDP guber primaries, the first challenge he encountered was certificate scandal.
The ‘dancing senator’ was accused and charged to the Osogbo High Court by Rasheed Olabayo and Oluwaseun Idowu for allegedly falsifying his secondary school testimonial and West African Senior School Certificate Examination results.
According to the allegations levelled against him, the testimonial Adeleke submitted to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) dated July 20, 1988, reads Ede Muslim Grammar School, Osun State, when at that time, Osun state was not in existence.
The duo also posited that another testimonial also reads Ede Muslim High School, dated 2018, indicates that the principal who signed the 1988 testimonial also signed the 2018 testimonial. This resulted in the arrest of the principal.
According to the plaintiffs, Adeleke did not take WASSCE in 1981 as claimed, since there was nothing like the Senior Secondary School Certificate Examination as that time.
They also alleged that the National Examination Council (NECO) examination that Adeleke claimed he took could not be genuine, considering that the body was not in existence at the time the Adeleke said he sat the examination.
However, Mr Edmund Boriomoni, counsel to Ademola Adeleke in his defence claimed that the secondary school had not come out to deny his testimonial.
He therefore asked the court to dismiss the case.
The court dismissed the suit stating that the plaintiff could not prove Adeleke’s forgery despite witnesses telling the court that they didn’t see Adeleke in the examination hall. One of the witnesses said he would have recognised him since he is a public figure.
2018 Osun Gubernatorial Election
Ademola Adeleke did not attend any interview in 2018. He was not available at the gubernatorial election debate organised by Channels Television in conjunction with NGOs.
There were also claims within the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) by some aggrieved persons that Ademola Adeleke can not read or write too which was fuelled by the All Progressives Congress (APC).
His emergence as the candidate of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) made Iyiola Omisore, the party’s flagbearer in 2014 and his running mate, Adejare Bello dumped the party.
While Iyiola Omisore moved to Social Democratic Party (SDP) to become its gubernatorial candidate, his running mate in 2014, Adejare Bello contested for Ede North, Ede South and Egbedore federal constituency under the platform of the All Progressives Congress (APC).
The Osun State gubernatorial election took place on 22 September 2018. Senator Ademola Adeleke of the People’s Democratic Party won the initial election as announced by INEC but was defeated in a rerun on 27 September by Gboyega Oyetola.
At the end of the entire process, Gboyega Oyetola of All Progressives Congress (APC) polled 255,505 votes and Senator Ademola Adeleke of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) polled 255,023 votes.
2022 PDP Osun Gubernatorial Primaries
The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) concluded its gubernatorial primary election on Tuesday, March 8, 2022 but it was a parallel one which was caused by existing injunctions from several courts.
These injunctions established a proxy leadership led by Wale Ojo who has the backing of Soji Adagunodo, National Vice-Chairman (Southwest) of the party and further strengthened the leadership of Sunday Bisi who has the backing of Senator Ademola Adeleke, a top contender in the 2022 guber election.
WITHIN NIGERIA had earlier reported how party chieftains took sides with interested leadership within the party. This report highlighted major events that shaped the parallel election held on Tuesday, March 8.
2022 Osun Gubernatorial Election
To the surprise of many, Senator Ademola Adeleke attended interviews especially the one organized by BBC Yoruba. He was available at the gubernatorial election debate organised by Channels Television.
Many political analysts opined that it would be a great difficulty for Ademola Adeleke to win the election owing to internal crisis within his party and the decision of Senator Iyiola Omisore who polled more than 128,000 in 2018 as a candidate of the Social Democratic Party (SDP) to join the All Progressives Congress (APC).
Some analysts also opined that the decision of Dr. Akin Ogunbiyi to dump the party and crossed over to Accord Party (AP) to fly his gubernatorial ambition would also reduce expected votes to make Ademola Adeleke win the election.
Findings by WITHIN NIGERIA revealed that the Anigba group – a coalition of aggrieved chieftains and members of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and its candidate, Prince Dotun Babayemi worked for the victory of the party at the poll with the hope that their candidate will be favored by the court.
The candidate of Accord Party (AD), Dr. Akin Ogunbiyi and his followers polled 4,514 votes which had little or no effect on the chances of victory.
Some analysts had projected that the Insurance guru, Akin Ogunbiyi would polled a reasonable number of votes which would had adverse effect on the chances of his former political party he dumped.
Senator Ademola Adeleke won the 2022 Osun gubernatorial election which took place on 16th July, 2022. Adeleke under the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) polled 403,371 votes while his closest rival, Adegboyega Oyetola of the All Progressives Congress (APC) polled 375,027 votes.
However, Adegboyega Oyetola and his party, All Progressives Congress (APC) had approached the Osun Election Petition Tribunal to challenge the results of the Osun gubernatorial election.
If the tribunal and other competent higher courts of jurisdiction affirmed the victory of Senator Ademola Adeleke, it simply means that he would be the first rally entertainer ever in the history of the state to become a state governor.