By Oluwakemi Olaniyi
Members of the 4th Oyo State House of Assembly on Wednesday paid glowing tributes to one of their colleagues, the late Speaker and Honorable Commissioner for Environment and Natural Resources, Rt. Hon. Kehinde Ayoola. The 4th Assembly forum described the demise of Ayoola as one death too many.
The tribute was delivered by the 4th Assembly Forum Chairman, Hon. Emmanuel Ola Adelowo (alias Ameye) at a Valedictory Sitting of Oyo State House of Assembly for the late Speaker on Thursday. The forum said late Ayoola was a reliable friend, a frontline political analyst, a consummate legislative debater, a consistent believer in the positivity of any progressive course, and an avid reader. “Kenny is an
irrepressible defender of democracy, and an Awoist to the core” the colleagues said.
The tribute reads:
“Today is not an enviable day! It is not at all, in particular for us, the members of the Oyo State Fourth Assembly Forum (OSFAF). These are the members of the House of Assembly who served Oyo State with Rt. Hon Kehinde Olatunji Ayoola from 1999 to 2003 (the Lam Adesina Honourable members).
When on the 6th day of June 1999, we started a legislative journey together with pomp and pageantry with Kehinde Ayoola, we never thought that, a dark day like this will becloud our joy very soon like this. We were certain that death would come one after the other. We have also lost 3 of our 4th Assembly members before now: Late Hon Taofik Olu Adeleke; late Barr. Hon Olalekan Ladapo; and late Hon Rasheed Alawiye Balake – (Hon Balake answered the call to the great beyond on Thursday, 13h February 2020). May their gentle souls rest perfectly in peace. But the transition to glory of our friend, brother, colleague, and first Rt Hon Speaker of the 4th Assembly of Oyo State – Kehinde Olatunji Ayoola on Thursday 14th May 2020 (I must confess), is one death too many to us in the Fourth Assembly Forum. But we agree with the Almighty God. His decision remains the final!
Rt Hon Kehinde Olatunji Ayoola (JP) was not just our colleague. We
unanimously elected him our Speaker in June 1999 without any dissention or abstention. In spite of all the political intrigues & intricacies of the time, Kenny remained a good friend to all the members of our Forum. A Forum, which he served tenaciously until death came calling unannounced. He was the Administrator of our Platform without our thinking of an assistant. We saw in him, a reliable friend, a frontline political analyst, a consummate legislative debater, a consistent believer in the positivity of any progressive course, and an avid reader. Kenny is an
irrepressible defender of Democracy, and an Awoist to the core.
In January 2020, the Rt Hon Kehinde Ayoola called me very early in the
morning of a particular Friday. “My Chairman”. That was his usual
slang when calling me. He said; “Hon Balake is seriously ill. He is now in a ward in UCH. Please, let us see what we can do”. As I dashed to the UCH, he set up Balake Support WhatsApp Group, through which people made financial contributions to save the life of our colleague, Hon Rashid Alawiye Balake. He did a lot to secure Hon Balake’s life. So many people got to know about Late Balake’s predicament through
Ayoola’s effort. Unfortunately, we lost Balake in February; & he (Kenny Ayoola), who did everything to save a colleague, left us without an opportunity for anyone to make a trial; even though our trial might not have done any difference. Death caught us all unaware.
That Rt. Hon Kehinde Olatunji Ayoola (JP) was made a Commissioner
in the cabinet of the present Oyo State Government was (and is) a confirmation that legislators are not meant to be used and dumped politically like mere political materials. We, his colleagues therefore feel, we have an obligation to appreciate this government, under His Excellency, the Executive Governor of Oyo State, Engr Oluwaseyi Makinde, for deeming it worthy to appoint our colleague and first Rt
Hon Speaker into his Cabinet. I must also, as the Deputy Director General of the Association of All Parliamentarians in Oyo States (AAPO) appreciate the appointment of larger percentage of former Hon members of the Oyo State House of Assembly into govt cabinet and other vital positions in this government. It is a positive signal that legislators should no more be used and dumped politically, and treated as inconsequential in the entrenchment of good governance. We appreciate Your Excellency for the sense of Honour extended to our colleagues.
Your Excellency sir, we wish to humbly appeal that Rt. Hon Kehinde Olatunji Ayoola (JP) be specially immortalized; while his children should be offered the opportunity of free cducation to the tertiary level.
I must not fail to recognise the courtesy and sense of commiseration extended to the 4th Assembly Forum by the Rt Hon Speaker of this august Assembly, Rt. Hon Debo Ogundoyin since the death of our colleague, Rt. Hon Kehinde Olatunji Ayoola (JP). I personally recognise and appreciate Your Honour’s sense of camaraderie and condolences.
We love Kenny. Unfortunately, “Kokoro ko je ka gbadun
obi to gbo!”. Very sad enough! The best in Kehinde Ayoola has not come before death came striking.
We lost a friend!
We lost a colleaguell
We lost a brother!!!
We lost a Speakerl!!!
Adieul Latunji, Omo Ayoola”
The late speaker of the Oyo state fourth assembly, died on May 14, after a brief illness.