Adeola, a Senator representing Lagos West at the Senate said such debate could give Ogun people not only a window of opportunity to know those aspiring to lead them, but also put to rest, the unwarranted grumbling over his recent endorsement by Ogun West Consultative Forum(OWECOF).
The quartet of Adeola, Suraj, Isiaka and Akinlade as well a two others – all from Ogun West Senatorial district and aspiring to govern Ogun State come 2019, were screened by the OWECOF between August and November this year.
At the end of the exercise, the body endorsed Adeola as a consensus candidate whose candidature it said could help the zone actualise their 2019 governorship agenda, but the endorsement was disputed by other aspirants.
But in an interaction with journalists on Friday, Adeola said he did not influence the outcome of the screening by OWECOF or induced the body to favour him as alleged by others, adding that he was “taken aback” when he received the news of his endorsement.
He noted that the opportunity given to him by the body to sell his programmes and vision to them, was also extended to Isiaka, Suraj, Akinlade and Chief of Staff to Governor Ibikunle Amosun, Tolu Odebiyi, and called the quartet out for a public debate since they were not comfortable or convinced about the endorsement.
According to the Senator, the debate if organised for the aspirants from Ogun West by journalists in the state or any group, may put to rest all unnecessary bickering and murmuring about OWECOF endorsement.
He pledged to improve on the revenue base of the state, consolidate on the good works of past and current governors of Ogun State, assuring that he wants to become governor because he has “what it takes to take Ogun State to the next level by the special grace of God.”
“I’m aware that before the Ogun West Consultative Forum embarked on this journey, consultations were made and I believe part of the consultations that were made was with the traditional rulers, elders of Ogun West senatorial district and other notable sons and daughters of Ogun West.
“It is aftermath of the consultation that was done here and there that the idea of invitation of aspirants came on board and as I’ve said, six of us were invited and it’s a programme that lasted for nine months.
“It’s not something that they did within three or four weeks, nine months and none of us contributed anything to the programme, not a dime! They are not here but God is here.
“I was invited like any other aspirant and I was given the opportunity to speak and address those people for two hours. Can he rule, yes or no, you can mark it. I think that is what those people did and they misconstrued them.
“Maybe by the time they put all of us on the podium like this and the whole world is watching, maybe then it can be a different ball game.
“And if they like, I challenge them to a debate, all the aspirants from Ogun West to a public debate and let us discuss and let us tell the whole world what we are ready to do for our people.
“I challenge them. I challenge Akinlade, I challenge Tolu, I challenge Suraj, I challenge Gboyega Nasir Isiaka(GNI). I challenge them to a public debate. If you are sure of yourself and you believe you have what it takes to govern our state and take Ogun State to the next level, come out for a public debate.
“Let Ogun State listen to us and let Ogun State take its decision and let everybody stop hiding under the finger of one individual. The media can be the observer, you (journalists) can call for the debate, you can organise it and let all of us come and talk to you.
“So, whosoever that is not convinced about what Ogun West Consultative Forum has done, I challenge them to a public debate and let us settle the score one and for all.
“If you are embarking on such a journey, one thing you must seek for is the face of God and once God says there is a way, then there is nothing else you can do. If I want to sit in the palatial home of Ikeja, GRA, Lekki, then why do I want to go into the rural part? But one day that rural part can be the same with these, some people must take the bold step.
” So I’m one of those that are taking that bold step. So, as I’ve decided to run or contest for the governor of the state, I have no regret. I am standing by my words that 2019 is sacrosanct,” Adeola said.