By Emmanuel Ajibulu
To the glory of God Almighty, November 9 is one special day when Hon. Abimbola Oluwafemi Daramola also known as Congressman appears to be everyone’s attention. This is a day when friends, political associates, employees, family members, loved ones etc, will leave no stone unturned to make him feel special.
Daramola, one of Nigeria’s iconic brand, was born November 9, 1967, precisely 50 years ago in Ado Ekiti to the family of Francis Adebayo Daramola, a former Chairman (Mayor) of Oye Local Government Area.
Indeed a journey of 50 years has no doubt shaped Daramola’s life. Even though not born into sheer affluence by dint of grace of good and hard work, he has done well for himself not by affluence but capacity to influence; he remains a simple, humble and self-effacing leader whose politics is defined by passion for discovery and service. He is endowed naturally with knowledge and sense of perception. Closely observing Daramola at work leaves one with impression of a man who refused to be encumbered by the nation’s fault lines. Just as prophets refuse to be defiled by the iniquities of the moment; Daramola has risen above the bitterness and acrimony of ethnic, tribal and religious divide.
He is famous for his penchant for the welfare of his people and anybody around him. This is consequent upon his political belief, which the All Progressives Congress (APC) represents. On the political platform, Daramola has become a driving force for human capital development and empowerment. He is consistent in advocating for social justice for the people and development.
An apostle of good governance, the former House of Representatives member has endeared himself to the Ekiti masses. This is so because not only does he preach it, he also expressed it during his election in 2011 as a member of the National Assembly to represent Ekiti North Federal Constituency 1, comprising of Ikole and Oye LGAs.
On November 8, 2014, Hon. Daramola added to his credentials as a public spirited politician when he built and equipped a 32-bed hospital worth over N180 million for members of his constituency for improved health care delivery. Today the infant and maternal mortality rate around his constituency has reduced.
The project is the flagship of his numerous programmes. The hospital, christened ‘Joan Taiwo Daramola Memorial Hospital’, and built in memory of his late mother, is located in Ire Ekiti, his country home in Oye Local Government Area of Ekiti State; as at the last check nobody seems to have taken on such a daring self-imposed responsibility as a political position holder in the State.
The eminent Nigerians at the well-attended inauguration ceremony of the hospital confirmed that it was not one of those programmes shoddily conceived under the guise of empowerment to delude the people.
It is not the monetary value of the project that speaks volumes, but its conception and the fact that it is the first of its kind by any federal legislator in the history of the 21-year-old Ekiti State.
The hospital is equipped with state-of-the-art equipment. The project was not executed with funds provided by the National Assembly under the constituency projects’ funds, this is a rare feat that must be commended and appreciated.
In fact, Daramola had always been on the good side of history as far as the politics of Ekiti State is concerned. He is a man of unblemished records of service and his political antecedents remain meritorious and indelible. Daramola also served as the Director-General of the Kayode Fayemi campaign organisation in a bid to consolidate the gains of democracy for Ekiti people in the June 21, 2014 Governorship election.
Over the four years in the 7th House of Representatives, he instituted a programme called ”Abo Mi Re”, which means “This is my scorecard” through which he reeled off his empowerment programmes for his constituents and even beyond. This was in a bid to banish poverty. He had Abomire 1, 2, 3.Sessions.
Out of the Chamber, the politician also initiated a social safety platform to enable Nigerian youths, particularly undergraduates and National Youths Service Corps members to cater to the challenging economic realities in the country through his communications company, the Bridge Concepts Nigeria Limited. The initiative titled the “Nigerian Students and Youth Corps Discount Card” (The Naija Green Card), is a “unique social protection” programme.
A grassroots leader with vision, he inspires people and mobilizes them for a better society. The one with sparkling motives employ wisdom, foresight, sense of purpose and commitment to stimulate the people towards self-actualisation and propel the national spirit in them.
Leading indeed is that enigmatic ability that enables one to turn a vision into a reality. It permeates values, approach and actions. These are the reasons Ekiti youths, who form a good percentage of the electorate can never be wrong; after-all, part of the reasons the youths made up their minds in one accord, concluding that Bimbo Daramola should lead Ekiti State as their Governor come 2018.
Daramola has unarguably, ran a dazzling race of his life as a politician, an administrator and a leader. Despite the success he has made of all of his endeavours, he exudes, yet a seeming urgency to reach the finish line in his chase to get his faithful citizen-colleagues to the Promised Land.
As he clocks 50 years on Thursday November 9, this geologist, with masters degree in public administration turned politician high-octane performance in governance and in the leadership sets him apart as a selfless and passionate leader who seeks to put his State of Ekiti on the world development map. Happy 50th birthday to a trailblazer and torchbearer of the emerging leaders in our Country.
AJIBULU is an infopreneur, online publisher and social media influencer