Today January 15th, marks the post hummus 65th birthday of a legend, in person of the First Executive Governor of Osun State, Senator Isiaka Adetunji Adeleke. It is after his death, that we understood, how lonely he struggled at putting too much into being with politicians and high public office holders, who were not as committed to the public good as they appeared to be. Senator Isiaka Adeleke, was at a point disappointed, that he was dealing with crass opportunists in politics, who have no over-riding love of life more abundant for the citizenry like he was. Senator Isiaka Adetunji Adeleke was literally burdened with this sad development, because he had hoped to make Osun State an Eldorado and her people, first among equals by emerging as their governor in 2018, since there was little he could do for them with his limited resources as a distinguished Senator of Nigeria. And that rare virtue of undiluted love for humanity, was what put Asiwaju Isiaka Adeleke many miles ahead of his political peers.
The Otunba of Ejigbo, traversed life too quickly with candour. He gave enough hope to the hopeless and the voiceless, if those of us living will care a bit, to look back and see how he processed and proceeded into making life worth living for the vulnerable. When he transited gloriously on April 26, 2017, that telling sweet smile on his face was making a statement about his satisfaction, that he had kept the faith. More profoundly, Senator Isiaka Adeleke was optimistic, that despite the political abracadabra in the land, Nigeria was set for greater height. He went into his grave, with the belief, that Nigeria will navigate her way through to a land flowing with milk and honey and will remain one and indivisible country. What a great Patriot, Senator Isiaka Adeleke was! The First Executive Governor of Osun State was of the conviction, that if each and every one of us, try hard to do our bits diligently, humanity will be better for it. That was the lesson he passed to those of us, who had the rare privilege of knowledge initiation at his feet, without necessarily forcing his way through or inducting us into accepting his views, hook, line and sinker. He was an avatar of unending joyous good times. Overtime, clarion calls have been made by this writer to the effect, that there is an absolute need for ISIAKA ADELEKE POLITICAL MUSEUM, right inside his Ede country home, to serve as a “Mecca” of sort for people from far and near, to see firsthand, those things – intellectual and material, that made SERUBAWON, ERINLOMO thick during his life time. A visit to Ikenne home of the late Sage, Papa Obafemi Awolowo of blessed memory, will serve as a reference point to this clarion call. Also those handling the writing of his biography, should hasten action, with a view to affording the public – at- large, the opportunity of knowing, those hitherto, unknown facts and records, the biography is set to unveil.
Our joy knows no bound, that the family has put up an everlasting legacy of a Central Mosque in his name. We return all glory to God for this unique landmark in his memory. My interactions with Senator Isiaka Adeleke, for a period spanning twenty-five years, availed me the opportunity, that true heroism lived in him. Many of his acquaintances, were also beneficiaries of this unique virtue, that stood him higher in the social, corporate and political turfs. We should therefore, as well-wishers of Senator Isiaka Adetunji Adeleke, pursue his dream and objective and do our best to stay on his vision for humanity as capsulated in his ideas of politics without bitterness, which he practiced through-out his lifetime. Asiwaju Isiaka Adeleke was a study and role-model for good naturalness, whom his admirers, fondly continue to refer to as their friend, brother, boss and benefactor with deep-seated respect and affection. His Excellency, Senator Isiaka Adeleke, indeed left no one in doubt, that it will take the grace of God for his political charisma and well-endowed flamboyance to be equaled. He remained an INSTITUTION; AN ENIGMA; An ICON; A LIKEABLE and LOVEABLE personality of all times. A CITIZEN of the world. It is pertinent to state, that Senator Isiaka Adeleke political empire, should be thoroughly fine-tuned and well-placed, as he would have loved to, to embrace all his loving but “god fatherless” disciples spread all over Osun State and beyond. Enough of favouritism of a particular set of people in Isiaka Adeleke political empire as presently constituted. There is still a lot of shifting and weighing to achieve this noble goal and sustain his political legacy and make it endure without hindrance. Senator Isiaka Adeleke, whilst alive lived for all. He managed his political journey refreshingly, without anointed disciples as we are witnessing today. Those who, for one reason or the other have grudgingly left his political base, should be worked upon to return and contribute their quotas to make Asiwaju Isiaka Adeleke political empire, bloom and blossom like four-season flower. He richly deserves this. A populist that he was, Senator Isiaka Adeleke heeded and fulfilled a generational call to give us what we have today as the State of the Living Spring, where acts of OMOLUABI reign supreme. He worked labouriously to achieve that goal and emerged triumphant. An attribute, that made him loved, dreamt and lived Osun throughout his lifetime.
This brings to mind, the need for vast majority of Senator Isiaka Adeleke associates, friends, of whatever categories, to come up with a ISIAKA ADETUNJI ADELEKE FOUNDATION, all on their own, without the involvement of his nuclear family, who are doing more than enough to make his memory evergreen. That time is NOW for the FOUNDATION to bring succor to Isiaka Adeleke down-trodden followers among other objectives.
Senator Isiaka Adeleke was a ‘human lion’ that ‘roared’ lovingly, without any harm to humanity. He “roared”, so that the less-priviledged far away, could hear his voice and come closer to him to partake of life more abundant. ERINLOMO was a political Stallion, that marched gingerly over the land. A political river, that never stops flowing. Asiwaju Isiaka Adeleke was a captain of his soul, urged by self determination. He demonstrated consummate intellectual grasp of issues, that inspired and mobilized a whole generation of young and old. A politician, that promoted shared values, shared services and shared opportunities in deepening democracy in Osun State. Up till today, Senator Isiaka Adeleke elegance, native intelligence still dazzles a lot of people. Senator Isiaka Adeleke as a man of God has departed this world in peace with salvation from the Almighty. Our brother, friend and boss, epitomized all that is Osun State, nay Nigeria. You cannot take humanity out of him, while humanity itself is not prepared to go out of him. May you continue to rest peacefully in the bosom of Almighty Allah- your Creator.
Happy post humous 65th birthday, Senator Isiaka Adetunji Adeleke. You live in our hearts forever.
Lawal was special adviser (media publicity) to the late Senator Isiaka Adeleke.
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