Former Green Eagles player, Segun Odegbami, has decided to throw his hat into the ring of politics in Ogun state.
In a message sent out to his friends on Snday, the 65-year-old ex-footballer said he would take “a plunge into the uncharted rivers of Nigerian politics” on Wednesday when he woukd formally join the Labour Party.
He said he intends to contest for governor of the state in the 2019 general elections.
Admitting that he was embarking on “a difficult, challenging but exciting journey”, Odegbami, nicknamed, Mathematical during his playing days, urged his friends and well wishers to “use me to show those who have condemned this country to the gallows of corruption, poverty, disease, hunger, crisis and underdevelopment that there are still a few good men and women, decent people with impecable credentials, of good conduct and character, a big vision, and with the determination to serve as they lead the people, change the fortune and face of Nigeria, and make the country the greatest Black nation on earth.”
He wrote: “Knowing my background and temperament, that is a giant step to take. I cannot even start to imagine the consequences of that action.
“But what I can clearly imagine is a vision of the Gateway State in Nigeria that can be a testimony of limitless possibilities in our country, and in Africa within a very short time.
But this will require, very essentially, the right kind of leadership!
“The key is leadership – one untainted by the sharp experiences of the convoluted and polluted politics of the day; one with an unblemished record of servce to his State, his country and to humanity; one with integrity, one with capacity and the courage to dare even in the face of the dangerous precipice on which the country perches..
“What this means is that from next Wednesday I shall embark on a difficult, challenging but exciting journey of leading (and will begin to serve) a movement of people that align with my vision for Ogun State as a model State in progressive governance with focus on the people, their general well being and welfare, plus unprecedented rapid development; all these serving as an example for the rest of our country, Africa and, indeed, the Black race on earth.
“Without doubt, in Ogun State we have the capacity, the resources, the energy and particularly the people, to become the fastest developing community in the world within a few years.
“Ogun State can provide the foundation upon which the emancipation of Black persons all over the world will be built.
“This will be in fulfilment of the dreams of Obafemi Awolowo, Wole Soyinka, MKO Abiola, and many other great sons and daughters of this most advanced but vastly underrated and underutilized system of socio-economic development – the Yoruba Culture.
“To succeed in this exciting venture, we will all be challenged in daunting ways. It will be a long, lonely and often torturous journey, but we will not be discouraged, nor will our spirit be broken.
“In fact the mountains we would have to climb will only ignite our excitement, determination, and focus.
“I am taking the first step on behalf of all disenfranchised persons in the state. It is now irrevocable and irreversible.
“Our ‘bank’ of contributions is also now open, and I humbly ask for your support and prayers particularly through the period of critical take-off period.
“My team of volunteers will be outlining our programs through the next few months in various media.
“Someone asked me the other day where I intend to find the financial resources to run this money-driven race.
“I laughed even as I answered him with all the confidence I could muster that my financial resources are unmatched even though I do not intend to play the money game with anyone. I assured him that the resources available to me are greater than all the money in the world.
“He was still processing my response in his mind when I told him my secret weapon and greatest ‘financial’ resource – the people!
“I therefore call on the people, all Nigerians, from all walks of life, young and old, at home or in the Diaspora, of all tribes and tongue, all who seek a great country, a healthy people, a vibrant army of youths well educated and fully engaged in conquering the world with their talent and passion, a grrat life for retirees, thè elderly, the physically challenged, the civil servants, teachera, the neglected middle and lower classes, the artisans, the women, etc. Indeed the list of the disenfranchised in my State is very long.
“There is work to be done.”
“With a team of co-visionaries, it can be done. Try me!” he concluded.