.Aribasoye says God’s grace behind emergence as Speaker


Distinguished Nigerians from all walks of life converged on Odo Ayedun Ekiti on Saturday to honour of the Speaker of Ekiti State House of Assembly, Rt. Hon. Adeoye Stephen Aribasoye who held an Interdenominational Thanksgiving to mark his ascension to office.

Oyebanji’s wife

Rt. Hon. Aribasoye attributed his emergence as the Speaker of the Seventh Assembly to God’s mercy and grace judging by his humble background and the hardship he endured in his early life and struggle for survival.

He noted that his election as Speaker was not due to the fact that he was the best, the wisest or the most qualified among his colleagues but was made possible by God who chose him out of equally qualified colleagues who found him worthy of being elected to the exalted seat.

The Speaker also expressed gratitude to immediate past Governor of Ekiti State, Dr. Kayode Fayemi and his wife, Erelu Bisi Fayemi, who was personally present at the thanksgiving.

Rt. Hon Aribasoye said God brought Dr. Fayemi and Erelu Fayemi across his path as his destiny helpers noting that the former first couple gave him shoulders to lean on and helped him to grow politically till he reach his present height.

He also appreciated Governor Biodun Oyebanji whom he said had adopted him as a son and also described the First Lady, Dr. Olayemi Oyebanji describing the governor’s wife as a mother to his family.

Governor Oyebanji who was represented by the First Lady, Dr. Olayemi Oyebanji, was also joined by the Deputy Governor, Chief Monisade Afuye; Secretary to the State Government, Dr. Habibat Adubiaro; Speaker Oyo State House of Assembly, Rt. Adebo Ogundoyin; Speaker of Osun State House of Assembly, Rt. Hon. Adewale Egbedun; members of the Ekiti State House of Assembly, members of the State Executive Council, traditional rulers, political leaders and religious leaders.

Explaining the motivation for organizing the thanksgiving, Rt. Hon. Aribasoye said there was need not to forget the humble beginning and that the journey to stardom started from his hometown, Odo Ayedun hence his appreciation to God for seeing him through the vicissitudes of life.

He paid tributes to his mother, Madam Aribasoye whom he said used to pray from 10pm to 5am daily for her children and his wife, Mrs. Adenike Aribasoye for accepting to marry him when he had nothing and the future looked uncertain saying he would never forget the roles played by the two women in his life.

The Speaker recalled doing menial jobs including washing cars of guests at a hotel in a bid to sponsor the education of his younger siblings which sometimes came with humiliation adding that he never lost focus and vision for a glorious tomorrow.

He said: “The only thing I never lost was the focus that tomorrow shall be alright and in the journey of life, God brought some people across my way. I met Dr. Kayode Fayemi and Erelu Bisi Fayemi who gave me their shoulders to lean on.

“I thank God for what He used you to do in my life, I will never forget and I will never be ungrateful to you. I will never be ungrateful to all whom God used for me. This thanksgiving is just to appreciate God for what He has done in my life. It is not just about my becoming Speaker.

“I thank members of the Sixth Assembly who made me their Chief Whip. I also want to thank members of the Seventh Assembly, I appreciate you all, thanks for your support. I couldn’t have wished for anything better, I thank you for your cooperation, support and unity that has bound us together.”

Erelu Fayemi described the Speaker as one of the many political sons to her and her husband describing the celebrant as a “man of honour, a hardworking person and a man of integrity” praying God to give him wisdom, tact and knowledge to succeed in office.

Apparently impressed with the brilliance and articulation of the Speaker’s wife, Mrs. Adenike Aribasoye and the Deputy Speaker, Rt. Hon. Bolaji Olagbaju while reading the lesson of the day and delivering goodwill message respectively, Erelu Fayemi urged parents to take the education of the girl child seriously and refrain from making their daughters go through harrowing child labour.

The Ekiti First Lady, Dr. Olayemi Oyebanji, who spoke on behalf of her husband, sought the support of the members of the state legislature for the Oyebanji Administration to make an impact on the lives of the people of the state.

She expressed delight with the statement credited to the Speaker when he led the state legislators to her office on Thursday that the Assembly, at the risk of being described as a “rubber stamp,” would assist Governor Oyebanji to take Ekiti to a higher pedestal of development.

“I thank God for the Honourable Speaker, I celebrate the grace and faithfulness of God in your life because you have received God’s mercy. I want to charge Mr. Speaker on the need for collaborative efforts between the Assembly and the Executive.

“I want to charge Assembly members to continue to support the BAO Administration in the interest of the people. Let’s continue to work for our people so that posterity will judge us right,” Dr. Oyebanji said.

The Oyo Assembly Speaker, Rt. Hon. Ogundoyin, who spoke on behalf of the Conference of Speakers of Houses of Assembly in Nigeria appreciated the people of Ekiti State for electing Rt. Hon. Aribasoye predicting a bigger role for his colleague in future.

Rt. Hon. Ogundoyin described his Ekiti counterpart as a “good leader, strong-willed, intelligent and God-fearing” praying for more wisdom for him to lead the state legislature aright.

Earlier in his sermon, the Regional Pastor of the Redeemed Christian Church of God, Region 25, Pastor Tunde Abdullahi, said the speakership of the Ekiti Assembly offers Rt. Hon. Aribasoye a golden opportunity to add value to governance and the lives of the people during his tenure.

Speaking on the topic: “Making A Lasting Impact,” Pastor Abdullahi who said leadership becomes meaningless without making impact in the lives of the people also charged the celebrant not to allow the grace of God on his life to become wasted.

The cleric said: “Your being the Speaker today is a call to service, it’s a call to responsibility. What will people remember you for? Live a life of impact, change this world for good and during your tenure, let people remember you for good.

“Add value to the lives of people, legislate over issues thay will bring joy to the people of Ekiti State during your tenure. Mr. Speaker, remember, one day, you will give account to your Maker.”

The service also featured prayers, thanksgiving, choir renditions and special song by the Aribasoye family.



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