Taking Steps 2

One of the greatest limitations we have in Africa is our ability to be planners and not following through with executing the plans. Yeah, I had lofty plans and I made sure they were carried out to the letter. I was like the youngest in my class and some of my class mates were 7 years older than me but I knew that if my plans were going to come through then I must have a big influence on them and other students in the department and even beyond.

That was when I started getting interested in leadership in the correct way unlike the way politicians practice it. That marked my introduction into the political class of Great Ife. My decisions were based on my values, ideologies and spiritual convictions. I decided I was not going to be like those guys in the violent political movements in Great Ife. I also decided to show them that clean guys can do politics and play it well without resorting to their own ways. My first port of call was at a meeting of the Civil Liberties Organization (CLO) but after a few weeks, I realized they were all members of a popular political party on Campus called Pacesetters. My political ideology then was that no political movement in Ife was clean, so I stopped attending the CLO meetings. Somehow, my talents showed faster than imagined and I became very confident about myself and what I had to offer. Speaking in front of people became very easy and the articulation was precise :).

The SUG elections were coming up and nominations started flowing in. I was in 300 levels and I was advised to seek elections into the Central Executive Council. I thought about it very well and at the end of the day; I conceded. It was one of the most memorable events in my life because I went from an unknown entity in one day to a relatively popular face. That election year was a good one for the Pacesetters as people wanted DSM out. At a point, some Pacesetters wanted me to join them but I was set on being an independent candidate. I contested for the post of Assistant Secretary General and at the end of the day lost to the Pacesetter candidate narrowly, coming second out of 5 candidates and winning some major faculties. That marked my big entrance into the political class because no one thought that a skinny young man from the faculty of Science could do so well against established political parties like DSM, etc. Many thought I was going to come last.

The Student Representative Council which is the legislative arm of the Student Union recognised the feat and for that year ensured I did not lose — I was nominated into the Judicial Council of the Student Union which is the Judicial and 3rd arm of government. I thus became Justice Ayobami Oladejo. My performance at the Judicial Council were notable and a terrain normally reserved for Law Students became a place I conquered. I dealt a lot with Interlocutory injunctions, motion exparte etc :).

At this time; I was Secretary General of the my departmental association and many thought I will go ahead to become the president. The elections were near and I thought I did not want it because I was holding a Student Union position. That was when my plans came back to me. I now have some influence and confidence – but would that be enough to carry out those plans? See the plans again.

1. I will ensure my department becomes attractive and respected.
2. I will become a role model.
3. I will encourage my mates and those coming behind to have a high opinion of themselves
4. I will encourage the use of IT to open up a career option they can easily fit in.
5. in doing all these; I will become a leader and put my life on the track to success.

Now my next post will detail how it was done. Keep reading.

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