Chief Obafemi Awolowo was a political leader of Yoruba extraction, who lived and acted by example.
His leadership style impacted positively on the Yoruba people in all spheres of life, but it is doubtful if those who hold sway today, followed his footsteps.
Chief Awolowo had a formidable political structure, with established hierarchy, that outlived him. Meetings were held at his Ikenne, Ogun state residence.
After he passed on to glory, in the days of military rule, Pa Adekunle Ajasin took over the mantle of leadership. During Pa Ajasin’s time, meetings were held at his Owo, Ondo state home. This was the foundation of the National Democratic Coalition(NADECO). The platform of Pro Democracy Activists during the dark years of military rule.
On the glorious home call of Pa Ajasin, Pa Abraham Adesanya became the leader of the group, up till the end of the military era.
In the course of Pa Adesanya’s leadership, those who could best be described as Pseudo Awoists and Pseudo Democrats were accepted into the fold.
Sadly, the foundation progressives were barred from the group, this was hinged on the fact that they served under the inglorious regime of late Military Despot, General Sani Abacha.
Now known as Afenifere, the group seemingly selected its members, while ensuring a close relationship with the Alliance for Democracy(AD). This did not go down well with others who had different political inclinations.
The composition of the group included, the first generation Awoists, the second 11 and the new elements. The new elements eventually hijacked the structure through unconventional means, taking advantage of the weaknesses of the group.
Out of the first generation Awoists, only a one time Governor of Lagos state in the Second Republic, Alhaji Lateef Jakande is alive.
However, Chiefs Bisi Akande and Segun Osoba emerged after the first generation Awoists, while the remaining were yet to emerge during the functional and active period of the group.
In an interview session with a Lagos based news magazine years back, the Director of Organization of the defunct Unity Party of Nigeria(UPN) in the Second Republic and now a member of the Peoples Democratic Party(PDP), Chief Ebenezer Babatope disclosed that during the last convention of the UPN in 1982, Chief Awolowo expressed hope that a time will come when the good elements of the conservatives will join the good elements of the progressives to form a synthesis.
But present happenings in political parties in the land contradict this synthesis.
Polarization and division in the parties were the means to the present scheme of things, even though the foundation progressives embarked on the free education policy to empower the Yoruba people.
Strangely, capitalism side by side nocturnal ideals and preferences have played great roles in shaping the well being of the South-West Geo-Political zone of Nigeria, much to the disappointment of the disillusioned and impoverished people.