At the mention of Senator Yakubu Oseni, there is an evocation of distinguishing feature which those he shares distinct religious, political and social belief with cannot attempt to deny. Humility, dedication and excellent high sense of duty have been his glaring trademark from his days in the banking sector where he cut his teeth as a meticulous manager of finance.
Testimonies of his humanitarian services, philanthropic gesture and ingenuity in making something out of nothing heralded his appointment by the then newly sworned in Kogi State Governor, Alhaji Yahaya Bello as the Executive Chairman, Kogi Internal Revenue Service (KIRS).
Of course, if the lofty ideas embedded in the people-centred New Direction Agenda of the new administration must be actualised, there is need for a potent revenue generating agency with a leader that knows his onions. Senator Yakubu Oseni’s stint at the revenue generating agency of the Confluence State was regarded by many as masterstroke!
Aside repositioning the agency which later culminated into its autonomy, ‘Alhaji’, as he was popularly called, brought to bear his deft skill in taxation that geometrically boosted the ailing Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) of the state.
To Senator Yakubu Oseni, he was patriotically discharging his duty as Chief Tax Administrator of the state to justify the rare confidence reposed in him by his principal, Governor Yahaya Bello, little did he knows that he was warming himself into the heart of Kogites of good conscience especially those from Kogi Central Senatorial District. Greater assignment awaits you, the people vowed.
When in the last quarter of 2018, the electoral umpire of the country, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) signalled that time was ripe for preparations for general elections, politicians from diverse political parties threw in their hat to the ring for the seat of Kogi Central Senatorial District.
Since democracy thrives on representative structure and all citizens cannot directly be at the corridor of power, Kogi Central was virtually thorn with the choice of most credible candidate with impeccable track record especially as they were determined to correct decades of dormant representation from the zone. It is imperative to enlighten at this juncture that the zone is richly blessed with new generation leaders like Dr Yakubu Oseni which of course, manifested in calibre of ‘people that put up their hands’ to be given the mandate.
A highly reserved and contented man, Dr Yakubu Oseni like the proverbial golden fish that has no hiding place was pressured by the people of Kogi Central to join the race. To these people, the era of inactive presence and pseudo legislative engagement where Kogi Central representatives are counted among the ‘I concur gang’ in the National Assembly has come to an end.
The people were equally tired of subtle encouragement of thuggery business by some self-acclaimed leaders whose modus operandi is to misdirect constituents’ supposed dividends of democracy for political patronage. Backed by the people of good conscience who are the ultimate owners of the senatorial mandate, Governor Yahaya Bello (and members of his cabinet) and of course, Almighty Allah, Dr Oseni emerged winner of the senatorial contest which took place on the 23rd February, 2019.
The eventual victory of Senator Yakubu Oseni was not a bed of roses or without the ‘abnormal normal’ vilifications, name calling and blackmail which have regrettably characterized Nigeria elections. Surprisingly, these unfortunate and unwholesome electoral dark side was taken to unanticipated level during the electioneering process.
However, the focused, humble and dedicated Dr Oseni did not tow the path of politics of bitterness being put forward by some of his political opponents, and had then vehemently warned his supporters to embrace the path of peace even in the face of provocation.
Today, the people of Kogi Central are happy with their choice. For the first time in several political dispensations, Kogi Central through Senator Yakubu Oseni, has formidable voice in the Senate despite being what some political analysts would call ‘a greenhorn’. No wonder the leadership of the Red Chamber graciously drafted him to preside over Senate Committee on Information and Communication Technology/Cybercrime.
Senator Oseni has made invaluable contributions when issues bothering on security of the country and youth employment are raised. His expertise in the areas of economy and taxation was recently exhibited when he dissected an ideal and workable quota of recurrent and capital expenditure and its impact on the economy at the Red Chamber.
As son of the soil, Senator Yakubu Oseni did not neglect his ancestral home. He played some silent but important roles in the eventual rural electrification project of the ancestral home of Ebira people, Upake in Ajaokuta Local Government Area. He defied the rugged terrain and was physically present on 19th August where he represented Senate President, Senator Ahmed Lawan on the commissioning of the multi-million 85KWP Solar Hybrid Mini-Grid.
In addition to this, Senator Yakubu Oseni has in shortest possible time lifted a lot of his constituents from the shackles of unemployment by facilitating job opportunities to hundreds of youths across the five local government areas of his constituency.
Poised to create difference and bring legislative duties to the doorstep of the people, the lawmaker recently inaugurated constituency staff who will be in charge of his offices across the district. Through this, the erstwhile communication gap between lawmakers and constituents will not be applicable in his reign.
Legislation in his view, is all about making positive impacts by creative engagement of relevant stakeholders for the benefit of constituents. Beneficiaries of the recent first batch of one hundred laptops distributed across Kogi Central would continue to applaud the leadership style of this lawmaker whose philosophy is a critical departure from the usual garrulous nature and gangsterism that characterized behaviour of some of our contemporary political leaders.
When I saw my Senator among other serious-minded Nigeria delegation to the United Arab Emirate recently on official assignment, I heaved a sigh of relief. Kogi Central has not fared like this. His intellect, deep sense of humility and dedication has actually made him to be among the ‘first-eleven squad’ in the Red Chamber. Kogi Central has found its voice nationally and internationally.
Zacchaeus Ozovehe writes from Kogi State University, Anyigba.