State of Osun is endowed with people of substance in every human endeavour, who have carved niches for themselves in sectors like politics, business, education, health, security and most importantly, sports. If. I dabble into politics, I will goof but to some extent, I can say a little about sports in Osun.
With my exploit as a former Chief Whip of the State of Osun Youth Parliament, I know Osun Youth are politically intelligent, brilliant and are not lazy. If you doubt my words, please move close or conduct a case study research of the Commissioner for Youth and Sports in the state, Honourable Yemi Lawal and find out why he deserves to be a running mate to Otunba Iyiola Omisore and why he deserves to be a commissioner. You can as well embark on the survey research method about Hon. Lekan Badmus, Adabanija Semiu, Dare Eluyomi Young, Lamina Kamiludeen, Beta Adewale Adediran and a host of others to know that Osun youth are hardworking, industrious and wise.
For someone in sporting arena in the state of Osun and even in Nigeria to claim not to know or hear of the name, Taiwo Ogunjobi, the person is then oblivious of what’s happening in the sporting sector. I doubt if the person could say anything about the Super Eagles of Nigeria because there is no gainsaying that the late Ijesha-born football technocrat deserved the “Pillars of Sports Award” bestowed on him by the Osun Chapter of the Sports Writers’ Association of Nigeria (SWAN) in October 2017.
Not only him, Chief Adegboye Onigbinde, Dr. Felix Owolabi (Owoblow), and the President of Osun United, Chief Ademola Adesina were among few people who starred for Eagles in 80s and are well recognized by Nigerians wherever they go. Chief Adegboye Onigbinde, as a coach, handled the national team for several years before he called it quit in 2002 after the FIFA world cup.
I could remember the honour and respect given to Chief Ademola Adesina by the immediate past Governor Rauf Aregbesola and his Chief of Staff, the present Governor Gboyega Oyetola in 2017 final of the Governor’s Cup, describing him as one of the Golden Sons of Osun while the humble, modest and unobtrusive present Deputy Chief of Staff, Alhaji Abdullai Binuyo prostrated for Chief Ademola Adesina on the 8th of May, 2019 at the Exco Chamber of the Governor’s Office during the inauguration of Osun United and Osun Babes Boards.
Late Chief Taiwo Joseph Ogunjobi, The former NFF General Secretary after his sojourn at the national secretariat of the football governing body in Nigeria came back to his source and headed the State of Osun Football Association (Osun FA) between 2006-2019, replacing Alhaji Suleiman Afolabi (Epoolere), who ruled till 2005. Alas!! He was to go for another 3-year term unopposed when the death came calling on his door in February, 2019. (May he continue to rest in peace).
The contributions of Late Chief Ogunjobi to football development in Osun is unquantifiable. That’s why his name, written with golden pen, will continue to be in the State’s book of record. Apart from this, through Chief Ogunjobi, the current Vice President of Osun United, Mr Layi Adesiyan, former media officer of the team, Tunde Shamsudeen, The Chief Operating Officer of NLO, Sola Ogunnowo, Osun FA Secretary, Abayomi Amoo and many more were able to rise and rise in the world of football and become people of substance. To me, this is one of the greatest achievements of chief Ogunjobi. (building people)
During his reign as the Osun FA Chairman, the then Prime FC, Osogbo now Osun United gained promotion to NPFL in 2008 with Baba’s administrative acumen and cash backing support from the then Oshogbo Local Government Chairman Mr. Isiaka Faramade, aka Rosebud.
However, the team got relegated back to NNL the following year and up till now, it remains an herculean task to gain promotion to NPFL for a decade. Even in 2017/2018 season, Osun United finished second bottom of the NNL log and were one of those teams to have relegated before the cancellation of relegation by the League Management. The meaning of it is that the abysmal performance of Osun united started in 2018.
Meanwhile, questions some are asking are i. What caused the poor performance of the team to have finished second bottom of the log in 2018? ii. Why wasn’t this corrected before 2019? iii. How can Osun United gain promotion to NPFL? etc
Those who understand the game will know that uneasy lies the head that wears the crown and that Nigeria league is very tough. Even with Chief Ogunjobi as FA Chairman, coupled with his pedigree and charisma, Osun United relegated from NPFL to NNL in 2009, Osun United have been playing NNL for 10 years without gaining promotion to NPFL, Osun United finished second bottom of the NNL log in 2018; before the team went down in 2019 after his demise.
Something very important to know is that Chief Ogunjobi is not dead. His work lives on through aforementioned people above whom the present management has been working with. With the state government’s financial backing, the pedigree and hardwork of Chief Ademola Adesina’s led board of Osun United, the support of fans and supporters, Osun United will gain promotion to NPFL very soon.
The management door is open for everyone with reasonable ideas and advice as well as constructive criticism. What we need is encouragement, not distractions. Let’s join hands together to make the dream come true.
“A house rat who went swimming with its friend, lizard and were dying of cold; for while the lizard’s scale kept it dry, the rat’s hairy body would remain wet”. (to whom it may concern)
…….to be continued