For many people, Engineer Hakeem Alao has no political experience, just like Governor Seyi Makinde in 2019, but his so called political inexperience is a factor to consider in addition to his exposure to outside Nigeria economy and his unifying tendency for him to fly the party’s flag in 2023 general elections.
Alao rejoined the All Progressives Congress, APC in 2021 after leaving deregistered Alliance for Democracy, AD where He has earlier gone to contest for Governorship position. Since joining the party, he has been clamoring for the unity of the party among the leaders, stakeholders and factions in the party. Without joining any faction or blaming any, his stand remains bringing the party together as one saying that it’s the only way to wrestle power from the ruling People’s Democratic Party, PDP in the state.
Alao in a chat with journalist on Monday, in Ibadan said: “Since I rejoined APC in 2021, I have been working tirelessly for the party. There is thrive and confusion currently within the party, but we will resolve it.
“More so, where we have issue is at the top level. Over the last three months, there have been a lot of reconciliation meetings, and I have also appealed to the stakeholders for resolution. I believe that within short period of time everything will be resolved and we are going to unseat the current government.”
Born in Ibadan on December 19th, 1968, Oyedele Alao attended Ibadan City Council Primary School as well as Urban Day Grammar School and Loyola College, Ibadan for his primary and secondary education respectively before proceeding to the University of Lagos and University of Benin for his Bachelor and Master’s Degree in Civil Engineering and Structural Engineering respectively.
Engineer Oyedele Hakeem Alao has been in the private sector of the Oil and Gas Industry since 1993 and has worked in various capacities as Project Engineer, Facility Engineer and Project Manager, all in Nigeria before going oversea. In January 2004, Engr. Alao secured employment outside the shores of Nigeria with world acclaimed Engineering Consultants, Tebodin and Partners, Sultanate of Oman and he was seconded to Petroleum Development of Oman as a Projects Construction Coordinator.
Due to his excellent performance as a seconded staff, he was recruited by the company in November 2006 as a Senior Contract Analyst to manage the administration of two services contracts. Engr. Alao was the Secretary to the Governance Board of the two contracts up till 2011.
He was later elevated to the position of Company Representative and in 2015, he was promoted to the position of Head, Contract Services. In 2019, as a result of re-organisation that see merging of all contracts team into one big mini organisation, Engineer Hakeem was elevated to the position of Lead Compliance Engineer and Contract Holder.
With these experiences and exposures, he seems to be the only aspirants in the party that has worked in Nigeria and outside Nigeria and knows how a country’s economy metamorphosised into something big and widely celebrated. Hence, he’s ready for the task and challenges ahead.
He said: “All the aspirants that are contesting with me are competent, I am not better than anyone of them. The only thing I can say that makes me to be ahead of them is my exposure. I have not only worked in Nigeria, I have worked outside Nigeria.
“I am working in Oman, a country where they changed a village to a city. I have gathered so much from my working experience to transform this state. I have visions for a better Oyo state.
“If I become the Governor of Oyo state, I’ll make things to work. My first target is free primary education.”
Speaking on some of his plans for the state if elected, the leading gubernatorial aspirant said he will give subvention to companies adding that the subvention will help the companies to thrive better and this will reduce unemployment in the state.
He identified many companies in the state and the country that have went moribund, a development which made many people unemployed.
He said: “We have got a governor who has not constructed a single industry. The only industry he has constructed so far is bus terminals. How many of the residents would love to send their children to garage school? You know the cost of each of these garages. We knew him so much, he was at the verge of collapsing when he emerged as the governor of the state.
“All the companies in Oyo state are dead and moribund. Companies in the state need subvention for resuscitation. This is for the betterment of the society. We have got a government that has not been doing much for the state.
“Why our economy is not growing is because we don’t patronize indigenous products, we depend so much on foreign goods. We have not invested so much in agriculture, and that’s why we have high cost of foodstuffs. If I become the governor, there will be prioritization of needs, investment in agriculture, increment in IGR without increasing taxes, control free health to mention few. I’ll turn the economy of Oyo state around and generate more funds. I will create employment opportunities for the youths in order for them to be engaged and reduce crimes rate.
“I’ll pay back loans owed by the state, and if we are going to take loans they will be to develop industries because my target is to create business hub in Oyo state. With my experiences, I believe nothing is impossible. I’ll do sustainable projects that will outlive me and run a transparent government.”
He condemned the Light up project of the state government adding that it’s unsustainable.
His words: “The street lights is a bad project because of the running cost. I am highly disappointed in the current government. The same project was initiated by James Ibori of Delta State in year 2000. It got to a point they couldn’t sustain it again because of diesel price. Oyo state has already took a lot of loans, and Nigeria economy is based on oil. If oil crashes, there will be problem.
“Why our economy is not growing is because we don’t patronize indigenous products, we depend so much on foreign goods. We have not invested so much in agriculture, and that’s why we have high cost of foodstuffs. If I become the governor, there will be prioritization of needs, investment in agriculture, increment in IGR without increasing taxes, control free health to mention few. I’ll turn the economy of Oyo state around and generate more funds. I will create employment opportunities for the youths in order for them to be engaged and reduce crimes rate.”