Jesus Christ was also rejected in his hometown of Nazareth, much as Prophet Muhammad (SAW) had been humiliated, tortured, traumatized, and rejected in Mecca, his place of birth, before migrating to Madina and returning to capture and rule Mecca.
As Jesus’ healing touch brought back Jairus’ daughter to life, he and the disciples left Capernaum and headed 25 miles south to Nazareth. For Jesus, this was a chance to visit his family and the folks he grew up with. As a local celebrity, Jesus should be welcomed with enthusiasm by the community. They would have heard of his authoritative teaching style, ability to cure illnesses, exorcism of demons, and even his ability to quiet a storm. That’s a fairly impressive resume!
And yet, the people of Nazareth greeted Jesus with skepticism and outrage. Others might be empowered by God to perform such works, but this was Mary’s Son. He grew up down the street, and they knew he was just a carpenter. While today we value the opportunity to achieve, advance, and make a new way in the world, the people of Jesus’ day were defined by their families and their upbringing.
Jesus did not come from a line of teachers and preachers; he was not a scribe or a priest. And so, the people took offense at what he was doing and who he claimed to be. They felt entitled to define Jesus according to their terms.
Simply put, this is the story of Kishi’s Barrister Bayo Lawal, who did everything in his power to help his town and ensured it received the proper attention from the government while holding the second-highest position in the state but eventually, was not appreciated for his good intentions.
He was rather humiliated in the last election by the people of Irepo local government. His only offense stemmed from the fact that, thanks to God, he was appointed to man the second-highest post in the state. And because of his loyalty to his principal, he suffered more humiliation.
Kishians had never held such a juicy position before, and the only way they could repay Governor Makinde for selecting their son as his running mate for the governorship election was to support Teslim Folarin of the All Progressives Congress in opposition to their own eminent son.
The Kishians were unable to distinguish between wants and needs. Perhaps, because the town is dominated by local people who have never had the chance to travel to Lagos or Abuja, let alone overseas, to know how juicy and important the office of Deputy Governor is.
Rather, they were being brainwashed with myopic attitudes towards their choices for growth. Or possibly many voters were influenced to sell their consciences for a dish of Jollof rice due to the town’s proximity to the border and the presence of an IDP camp that houses beggars.
The residents of Irepo committed the same error also in 2019 and as a result, their LGA is now obsolete and backward-looking. And despite Governor Seyi Makinde’s encouragement and best wishes to improve the appearance of their town, thereby picking their son as a running mate, they once more demonstrated to the world on March 18, 2023 that they lack the capacity and competence for such a position.
They equally demonstrated to the entire people of Oyo state that the town should never be remembered for good or taken into consideration by any government.
With their attitude and campaign of slander against Governor Makinde and his deputy in the last election, the residents of Irepo have been characterized by many as ungrateful.
Their treatment of Bayo Lawal is akin to the saying that Jesus cited, which states that a prophet has no honor in his birthplace. These remarks not only described the response Jesus received in Nazareth, but they also predicted the rejection he would experience in the future. Jesus knew that his popularity would be short-lived, that the religious leaders and teachers would continue to oppose and persecute him. In the meantime, the populace remained indifferent in the interim, preventing Jesus from performing amazing deeds in their presence.
This wrong action of Kishians in the governorship election may not actually allow the deputy governor to place Irepo on the negotiating table for slots and many other things for development, aside from the fact that the deputy governor is so loyal to his boss and often described as a Co-pilot by his principal. One can wonder why the elite Kishians didn’t merely let the young people in the town comprehend the disadvantages of losing the election, or why they didn’t stop the embattled Irepo Chairman, who also voted against his party, from brainwashing the youth. This is really sad.
When a caller on Fresh FM today asked the Governor to fix the Igboho to Kishi road despite Igboho not voting Governor Makinde in the last election, he did me a big damage by adding insult to injury and rousing the sleeping dog inside of me who had been full of words ever since the March 18th governorship election.
But, given my governor’s response, one could start to wonder why the local governments of Irepo and Oorelope decided to vote against the governor, who genuinely cares about the Federal Constituency and even picked his deputy from the Constituency. Could this be as a result of the ousted deputy governor, Olaniyan, conspiring with individuals like Irepo local government chairman, Santana, and other councilors to thwart Barrister Bayo Lawal’s valiant efforts to ensure that all Oke-ogun is able to deliver for Governor Makinde?
Historically, the Irepo local government’s voters rejected the party that won the majority votes in the 2019 election, just as they did too, in 1993, 2003 and 2007. Their action is like a kind of curse against every successful candidate every four years. I had thought that the curse would be lifted since a son of the soil was picked as running mate, but it appears beyond repair.
But, why? Whom have kishians offended ? Are the ancestors really angry? Will the Iba of Kishi not attempt to carry out certain rites to reverse this curse? Then why does the town always bring itself down? What is the deputy governor’s offense?
The deputy governor who Irepo voters ganged up against in the last election and the election on February 25 was the one who even reminded OYSROMA Chairman and board members to make sure they start the construction of the new site in Kishi to bring about development just out of his love for his town.
Baba Deputy as fondly called in Kishi chose to follow and imitate the behavior of the Prophet Muhammad, who was stoned in Taif for preaching about Islam, asking the Thaqeef tribe to worship only one God, and leaving idol worshiping to make them among the inhabitants of paradise. He didn’t even attempt to pay back evil with evil.
But they rejected his message and insulted him. Not only did they refuse to listen to his message, but they unleashed the children of their tribe to throw stones at him and drive him out of their town. With people jeering at him as his ankles bled, he ran out, finding shelter in an empty orchard.
Alone, bleeding, and rejected, he (peace be upon him), rests on a rock and prays to Allah. He is so compassionate and merciful, he does not ask Allah to punish the people of Taif or to execute revenge against them. The same way Barrister Bayo Lawal had also urged the OYSROMA to begin the construction of the new site in his hometown, and with many other things he had done even before becoming Oyo Deputy Governor.
He never treated any kishians badly including the Chief Imam of Irepo local government and others who traveled all the way to Ibadan to apologize for their wrong action, as well as for the campaign of calumny been sponsored by some segment of Muslims prior to the election in the town.
The Super Deputy Governor was able to follow in the footsteps of both Jesus Christ and Prophet Muhammad. He opted for mercy and not violence towards Kishians. He was not engulfed in fury or hatred. And he chose to accept responsibility for all that happened rather than seeking revenge against the resident of Irepo Local Government.
I ask again, KISHIANS; what is Baba Deputy’s offense?
Oyedeji Ahmed is a Senior Special Assistant on Public Affairs to Oyo Deputy Governor,
Can be reached via 08064372225