Ekiti Decides: MPN’s Omoyeni Sees A New Ekiti Under His Watch
On the list of candidates from the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Bisi Omoyeni, was named as the flag bearer of the Mega Party of Nigeria (MPN).
MPN adopted him after dumping Sunday Balogun, the winner of the party’s primary.
He hails from Ikere Ekiti, the same town with the flag bearer of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Professor Kolapa Olusola,
He was formerly in the PDP and served as a former deputy governor under Governor Ayodele Faose.
He dumped the party to pursue his governorship ambition after Olusola emerged the PDP candidate.
Although he sees not the opportunity as a do-or-die affair, having been a part of Fayose administration, Omoyemi is strongly of the view that Ekiti can actually get more than it currently does in terms of the delivery of good governance, with a better focused and administratively inclined leadership.
Omoyeni said if elected, his administration’s industrialisation agenda will be anchored on agriculture and education to give the state a new economy and change the character of the state from the civil service state tag.
He promised to create at least 10,000 high-paying jobs within four years through agriculture and agro-allied jobs.
“Within four years we will work to give Ekiti a new character different from the tag of civil service state. Our government will target rice, cocoa and cassava production and build industry and wealth around the value chain by partnering with key industries and private sector.
“We will create 10,000 quality jobs through integrating production of rice, cocoa and cassava with industrial processors. We will bring young people into farming by organizing them into cooperatives and link them up as out-growers to industrial off-takers,” he said.
Omoyemi is a seasoned banker, who started his career as an Insurance Broker but later moved to mainstream banking with Wema Bank in 1987.
He got to the pinnacle of his career as the Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of the bank where he served between 2005 and 2008 when he retired after 21 years of service.
Is he hoping to triumph on July 14? “Very sure, I will win come July 14. We have so bright a chance that we will win the election. The people are anxiously waiting for us to come into government.
“Now, Fayemi’s administration was not better off and the people do not want him to come back, while Fayose’s administration has been plagued by months of unpaid salaries'' he said during one of his campaign rallies.
Also, from the audience survey, they are fed up of the APC and the PDP and they want the MPN to come on board.
“Three things are already speaking for me: the integrity and conscience that I carry, reference can be made to my clean personality at anytime and my manifestoes are not for selfish reasons at all, but to better the lives of the people, creation of jobs, payment of salaries as at when due and lots more.''
Omoyeni's laurels in banking may not find expression in politics. He caught his first political tooth when he was appointed Deputy Governor in 2014, a position he occupied for two months and two days after which he quit to take appointment as Managing Director of Wema Bank. This is a clear demonstration of his preference of Board Room politics to the grassroots politics.
Some of his admirers say Omoyeni left because he could not work with Fayose.
If this is true, then, his personal judgment may be called to question. Did he not know who he was going to work with and why?
Some people believe he mistook board room politics for grass roots politics. If this is true, when and where did he train for the current governorship aspiration?
Beside the board room policies and politics under the air-conditioner; what experience has he in the mucky, dirty and hot air grassroots politics?
Reacting to his own appointment in October 2005 in his own words, Omoyeni said: "I was shocked. Politics is not a familiar terrain to me, I wanted a quiet life."
The big question now may be, at what time has politics become a familiar terrain to Omoyeni?
Is he ready for a tumultuous life now different from the quiet life style he wanted in 2005?
Somebody who quit being a deputy governor two months after appointment, maybe because of the rigors of the office, may not be ready for the more strenuous and rigorous 24/7 job of being a governor in 2018.
Among his ardent supporters, Omoyeni is still seen as a gentleman who is too quiet, too aloof and who still cherishes a quiet life as he wanted in 2005. And indeed politics may still not be a familiar terrain for him.
Omoyemi was born in 1958 in Ikere, his hometown. He has a Bachelor of Science (1983) in Insurance.
A man with an unquenchable thirst for knowledge, Omoyeni followed up his first degree with two additional postgraduate degrees; Masters in Banking and Finance (MBF) and International Law and Relation in 1991 and 1993 respectively.
Omoyeni cut his professional teeth with Hogg Robinson Nigeria ltd. Lagos where he started as a broker. He moved to continental loss adjusters, Lagos where he was the manager and later joined the service of Wema bank in 1987 as assistant manager 11.
Omoyeni was given double promotions from assistant general manager to general manager in August 1993 because of his sterling performance. He rose through the ranks to become the MD of the bank.