Oyo state Governor, Engr Seyi Makinde has disclosed how he won the Chairman, Broadcasting Corporation of Oyo State (BCOS), Prince Dotun Oyelade to his political camp prior to the 2019 gubernatorial election in the state.
Governor Makinde explained that he almost found it difficult getting Prince Oyelade on his political campaign train in 2018 as the Ogbomoso indigene was then with the Accord Party.
Governor Makinde spoke on Saturday at the 70th birthday celebration of Prince Oyelade and Book Lunch at the Prof. Theophilus Ogunlesi Hall, Opposite UCH, Ibadan.
The governor said he literally slept in the house of Prince Oyelade before he could eventually convince him to join his campaign team, preparatory to the 2019 elections.
“When we were searching for a media handler for our campaign in 2017-2018, our focus was on the celebrant, Egbon Prince Dotun Oyelade.
“It was then very difficult for us as he was with the Accord Party. You know, members of that political party are difficult; you cannot buy them with money.
“During that period, there was almost no single day of the week that I will not visit the house of Prince Dotun Oyelade at Akobo to convince him to join us and head the media of our campaign team,” Makinde said.
Disclosing how Prince Oyelade was appointed Chairman of BCOS, the Governor explained that after the victory in 2019, Prof. Oyelowo Oyewo, a Christian from Ogbomoso had been chosen as a commissioner, so it will be unfair to have another Christian/Ogbomoso indigene in the state cabinet.
He further stated that, Prince Oyelade said he should place him in any field and he will perform.
Governor Makinde lauded Prince Oyelade for the good works he has been doing as the Executive Chairman of the BCOS, noting that he has turned the corporation around positively.
“Each time I pass through the Idi Ape/Bashorun/Akobo Road, I will always pause to behold the good works that Egbon Prince Oyelade is doing at the BCOS,” he added.
Governor Makinde, who was the chief launcher of the book titled DOTUN OYELADE REPORTING: Memoirs of a Newshound”, said Oyelade and other media men of his generation were professionals impact the public positively.
While he admitted that he was yet to read it, Makinde promised to go through the book so as to digest the content, noting: “I will introduce the book in my newsletter, there will be a lot of lessons to be learnt from the book”.
The governor who recommended it to students and practitioners of journalism and bought 40 copies of the book for himself and the chairmen of the 33 local councils in the state.
In his remarks, the celebrant, Prince Oyelade, said he would not say much as the book has revealed all he may he want to say, but thanked God for his sojourn in journalism, a career that has spanned 45 years.
The Chairman of BCOS said he has lived a remarkably successful life, most of which he said was spent on broadcast journalism.
I want to live the rest of my life on professional and marital mentorship,” Oyelade said, just as he used the occasion to renew his marital vow to his wife of over 43 years, Funmilayo, by presenting her with an expensive 18 carats wedding ring.
The book, “DOTUN OYELADE REPORTING: Memoirs of a Newshound”, was reviewed at the event by Professor Olawale Albert of African History, Peace and Conflict Studies, University of Ibadan; Professor Adepoju Tejumaiye, Head of Department, Mass Communication, University of Lagos; and Professor Yinka Oyewo, Head of Department, Communications and Language Arts, University of Ibadan.
The event drew several dignitaries from the state, among who were former Governor Rashidi Ladoja and his wife; and former Nigerian Ambassador to the Philippines, Dr Yemi Farounbi, an Ibadan High Chief, Oloye Lekan Alabi, among others.
On Governor Makinde’s entourage were the state deputy governor, Chief Bayo Lawal, members of Oyo State Executive Council, Governor’s special advisers and some members of the state House of Assembly, among several others.