Kwara; The Politics of cosmetic governance


By Abdulbasit Ibrahim Oniwiridi

Just like what Brandon Gaille referred to as ‘terrific aggressive marketing strategy’, Kwara Abdulrazaq’s style of governance of a State have been, unfortunately, reduced to mere attempt to show he is ‘good’, and not necessarily making goodness out of his job as a State Governor. His carriage and directions as a Governor has continued to be dictated by political correctness and populism, which is only a trait of shortsighted and desperate political leaders.

Lately, Kwaran are inundated with a Governor that seem to build governance around himself, and not for the people who actually elected him to serve in that capacity. Just like beautiful restaurants that serve mediocre food; charmingly branded apps that feature frustrating user experiences, our political office holders, including the Governor are now more interested in talking up their own greatness, instead of investing their time into making Kwara great and allow those people talk about their greatness

From the Governor, to KWASSIP Coordinator, to Head of Service, everyone is now a ‘media handler’, trying hard to present the administration, and particularly the Governor as the best with the talks. Definitely, they must have alluded to the conclusion that the governmental actions and inactions aren’t enough to convince Kwarans of their goodwill and the positive implications of their leadership on the common man, hence, the need to aggressively do the talking. Even if it unconventionally reduces our Governor to article writer, when the battalions hired to write is not achieving desired result.

Brandon postulated that when a product’s story is driven by flashy pitch decks and loud marketing, one thing becomes clear: it was built with ego, not elbow grease. This approach to building products not only harms the brand’s integrity, but also exacerbates already underwhelming performance. It’s an obvious short-game approach. This typified the obtainable situation in Kwara, where the kilometers of road networks constructed and numbers of critical infrastructures built, but by newspaper rating, which in recent times have been found to be less of merit based but of economic interest. After all, at no year did ex Governor Bukola Saraki and Abdulfatah Ahmed missed a ‘Governor of the Year Award’, but Kwarans couldn’t have rejected the Bests in actuality. Connect the dots.

Like I said in my recent article (, while trying to fake personality, deceptive leaders usually fall into their own traps. As plausible as the disengagement of the illegally recruited teachers, among whom we have crops of grossly incompetent teachers would have been, Governor Abdulrazaq robbed himself of the accolades because of his utter desire for populism against what was right in the first instance. He is now seen as a man whose promises cannot be banked on, having promised his government will not disengage them even without reasonable justification other than political sensation. )

As if that was not enough, Governor Abdulrazaq in his usual attitude of hoodwinking people to have a notion of firmness about him still went all out, publicly to admonish public officials to not influence the process of recruiting over 4,000 teachers in the State. What a gaffe!

The Governor has only demonstrated his lack of control and firm grip of his own administration. A father only cries out to caution his children when he loses control of his home. By that singular action, he has shown his distrust for those he is working with and tactically attempts to exonerate himself from any such allegation of favoritism or nepotism in the recruitment process, should it occur.

One would expect a Governor in control to call officials billed to be involved in the recruitment process and issue directives and stern warning, stating clearly, consequence for flouting the directive on the recruitment process. Not going of pages of newspaper to announce your intention to be impartial or admonitions against influencing the process. It shows nothing but weak leadership.

The Governor may need to have a rethink, sure, building a government that provides actual value to the people can be challenging. But governance of lasting value are not built on foundations of flashy and gimmicky taglines. They’re built on making the people truly happy by delivering quality leadership that provides sustainable and not mushroom socioeconomic development. Visionary leaders lay a cornerstone for truthful, collective and potent governance that champions a great course for the future a State.

As I was winding up with this opinion, I saw a flash from a local tabloid of the possible dissolution of the State executive council (SEC) which was later officially confirmed via a press release that came like the proverbial thief in the night, one can only wish for a better pro-Kwara assemblage with intellectual dept and experience is management of human and material resources away from the dissolved assemblage which was anything but inspiring.

Oniwiridi is a PhD student at the University of Ife, he can be reached via

Opinions expressed here doesn’t represent the editorial stand of Fresh Insight, it’s solely the view of the writer



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