It is no longer news that the appointment of Dr Festus Adedayo as special adviser on media and publicity to the Senate President was reversed barely 48 hours when the news of his appointment greeted the airwaves.
The prolific writer, who was former aide to Governors Chimaroke Nnamani and Abiola Ajimobi of Enugu and Oyo States respectively, was opposed by groups and individuals loyal to APC and President Buhari on the argument that he has been a harsh critic of the APC led administration at the centre.
The fact that the Senate President reappointed three media aides that served under the PDP senate leadership of Bukola Saraki suggests that the decision to withdraw the appointment of Festus Adedayo was beyond political or tribal considerations.
It should be obvious to all that Festus Adedayo is an anti establishment critic. He is arguably comparable to a Gani Fawehinmi of blessed memory. One wonders however why such a person would accept to serve under the same incumbent government that he has consistently dealt a great blow.
Festus Adedayo while accepting the decision of the Senate President, vowed to continue hitting Buhari and Bola Tinubu.
Apparently, Festus Adedayo must have been attracted to pick the job in the first place based on other considerations and not in view of his commitment to the professionalism he had been known for which, has consistently pitched him against the establishment. He even describes himself as “a rabid anti-establishment person.”
While reading his response following the news of his sack, I observed his statement to the effect that he is a pessimist who sees optimism in pessimism. To be precise, quoting him, he wrote “I am a natural pessimist and see pessimism in optimism”
Sincerely, in my view, a person like Festus Adedayo is not the type that is needed in government, especially at a time like this. Considering the low morale of the people, the professionals that we need in government are those who are natural optimist, who can inspire hope and lift up the spirits of Nigerians. Individuals who can restore confidence in our system and institutions while engaging those in office to live up to the expectations of the masses. It is doubtful if Festus can rise up to such a task considering his antecedent.
I recall his recent criticism of the decision of Governor Seyi Makinde to cancel the payment of N3000 fees by students in Oyo State public schools. Rather than commend the Governor for fulfilling his campaign promise to the electorates and encourage parents to reciprocate the good gesture and goodwill extended to them by the Governor by doing every other thing needed to enrol their children in school, he was of the opinion that the Governor was depriving the state about N1.2 billion annual IGR at a time when the state is experiencing dwindling resources. What he failed to address was the huge leakages under the Ajimobi Government that need to be blocked. Can Festus Adedayo claim to be ignorant of the excesses of Ajimobi while he was in office? What were his reactions?
In view of the foregoing, the question that has been coming to my mind is this, Is Festus Adedayo a victim or a villain?
– Written by Idowu Ogedengbe, an investment banker, economic analyst and public commentator.