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by. Pelumi Olajengbesi Esq.

At every turn in human history, we always come round to a moment pregnant with possibilities for revolutionary change but threatened by seeming impossibilities. It is at this point that the mettle of men are tested and men take sides in history for or against progress and redemption.
But redemption comes at a price and being bold, determined and driven is all that is needed to look at an unacceptable way of life and challenge its continuous existence. We - you and I, are today at the threshold of a new possibility. We are living witnesses and participants at a point in our state and national life that will be referenced as the turning point of this country from oppression to liberty. In the battle against the Philistines today, however, we must chose a side.

I am 31 years of age, and I am asked why as a young man I have opted to join politics and expose my self to personal ruin. People have wondered aloud to me if this should not be the years when I should pursue personal glories, use my energy and contacts to gain new heights in my legal practice and simply abandon the dirty business of politics to the powers that be. This concerns have poured in from many corners, friends, family, associates and society leaders, yet my answer has always been the same: I am simply taking a stand.

Every single year in my life have been colourful and eventful. I have lived, in my young life, the aggregate of a thousand years in penury and misery, in lessons learned and truth revealed, in service rendered and duly received. I have always felt that my life’s story was always leading to a certain point, that the sum of my beliefs and struggles would lead me to a certain place and responsibility.

It has been said that all it takes for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing. I do not qualify my personality, but I assure you my intentions are good. My drive is different from what is common and this has in no small way exposed me to crude attack from those who consider my aspiration an affront on their stranglehold over our people and common wealth. I do not fear confrontation, I welcome challenges.

However, I live a life that acknowledges realities. I know only too well that I have taken a stand against an opposing side that have armed up to do battle. I know fully well that this struggle is not against one man but against a system. A system of greed and avarice. The system I refer to is populated by pride and ego, a heightened sense of self-importance and omnipotence.

In every generation, there must be a Goliath and a David, the important discuss is where do we stand? This is the Goliath system - a deliberate network of forces inimical to liberty and real growth. It is a system populated by self-acclaimed giants who gain a sense of worth from the wealth they command. All it takes to be a part of the Goliath family is to strip oneself of humanity, to worship merriment at the expense of families, cities and villages, to believe in wealth without work, knowledge without character, business without ethics, science without humanity, religion without sacrifice and politics without principles - this is nothing but politics for survival as posited by the late civic crusader Mahatma Ghandi.
But there is a second side with an opposing ideology. This is the clan of David. This is the place of honour and self-sacrifice, a place of principle and character. Of boldness and determination tested against the gale of suppression and oppression that is rife in the land. Not surprising, it is a movement that starts out small and overtakes the opposition in no time. This is the place of honour and liberation. In every century such movements have been recorded, from biblical times to revolutions that rocked the foundation of oppressive regimes and uplifted a nation and its people.

Ijesa North today for me, is a microcosm of the Goliath and David story. Our lives are allegories of that narrative, and our situation today re-enacts the events of those years. Unfortunately, some amongst us prefer comfort zones, aim for the easy way out and allow themselves to be intimidated out of their rights. There are youths who are desirous of change but unwilling to be the vehicle to drive that change. Who then will bell the cat ? Who will sling the stone at the heads of modern day Goliaths and earn for us all much needed respite and liberty?

I do not ask these questions to indict but to show you all the urgency of this challenge. It is not an easy walk, but it is made all the more easier when we hold hands and walk together. We must understand that we are coming up against the Goliaths of our time and so must be the generation of David to bring an end to our political and economic captivity. This is the threshold that we now stand over today. We all must take a stand.

To lean on the counsel of another young leader in the bible, let me say that as for me, my family and associates, we have decided to take a stand against poverty, subjugation and the oppression of modern day Goliaths. I, for one, do this knowing of the personal cost but driven by the ultimate objective of redemption and liberty. I am armed by the struggles of our people and buoyed by their spirit. There is no turning back, there is no giving up.

I will always leave open my invitation to you all who are yet to take a stand to do so today. Do no fear, do not hesitate. Our Oriade/Obokun needs your commitment, our people need your faith. We must make progress against the shields held up against up by the Goliaths of our times. Be a David, be a soldier for the truth. Join the rank of true change and lift the misery of our people today. Support what they call impossible and make it possible.

Aspirant for the House of Representatives Seat, Oriade/Obokun Federal Constituency.
Osun State.

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