For Hon. Bimbo Daramola, the Director-General of the Governor Kayode Fayemi Campaign Organisation, his only pastime is the Sunday morning pounded yam family reunion, writes Shola Oyeyipo
It is exactly 15 days from today to the much talked about governorship election in Ekiti State. A time like this is therefore deemed crucial to all participating since it is about the last stage of vote canvassing.
However, for the incumbent Governor John Kayode Fayemi, one man has been at the forefront of his reelection bid and that is Hon. Bimbo Daramola, a House of Representatives member from Ekiti North Federal Constituency I which comprises Oye and Ikole Ekiti. He is the deputy chairman, House Committee on Millennium Development Goals.
And since the lawmaker has succeeded in combining the marketing of Fayemi’s comeback bid with his legislative duties including other personal engagements over the past months, it is imperative to ponder how demanding this period might have been.
But Daramola who in his official website stated that: "I have chosen a different path in politics; that of service to the greatest number of people over and above self", said he was aware of the task ahead of him before accepting to be the DG of the governor's campaign organisation, a decision he attributed to his commitment to Ekiti State and the people.
"From the start, I knew it was going to be demanding but it is a call to duty. I knew it would demand so much physically, financially and everything. It is obviously something I have got to give. Several things I have given. But I thank God for where we are today.
"It is like cutting oneself into seven equal parts and all are equally busy. Interestingly, it is a task in which you don't have borders. There is no relaxation. This is even more so because I'm people-centric – people are always around me.
"In fact, I had to relocate to the Government House so that I could work but when we began to see that the influx of people to the Government House could compromise security, we had to apply measures to prevent compromising the security of the Government House," he said.
While he maintains that his current responsibility is so demanding that it creates no room for rest, Daramola and his campaign team have however improvised ways to cool down during and after work.
"When we get off the campaign trains, we go to any of our member's place and we have some drinks. We also do street walks, which is also part of the campaigns.
"But Sunday mornings are a little freer. So on Sunday mornings, I have my people go with me to any of the good pounded yam joints in Ado-Ekiti. We now have what we call 'Sunday morning pounded yam family reunion.
"We go to the pounded yam joints with our supporters. That is our light moments. There we don't have congressman; there is no honourable. We all get together as one big happy family and eat," he noted.
Outside his job brief as the DG JFK campaign organisation, Daramola explores other methods of unwinding. He reads newspapers, watches television – especially news and hangs out with friends.
"Usually, at least some of my 359 colleagues have either weddings, chieftaincy, empowerment programme or other functions and because of the goodwill I enjoy among my colleagues, I try to attend.
"Sometimes, I invite a few friends and somebody plays piano – like one man band. It is what is called 'tungba' and we chit-chat and talk about everything," he added.
In his views, projecting the governor to the people has not been difficult because of the content of his character and records of achievements.
"Things are beginning to add up. The election slated for June 21 is not an election; it is just an opportunity for the people to make Ekiti move forward.
"They have seen how the governor has impacted their lives and they would not allow the government go into shaky hands. The only trustworthy candidate in the election is Governor Fayemi.
"The Labour Party guy is not trustworthy. I challenge him to give account of his stewardship. Let him put himself side-by-side five others. When you say you will donate your allowance to the people, it means you don't know the workings of government.
"Fayose too is running on record, but what kind of record? The only one departure from our gory past is Governor Fayemi. Fayose had ruled the state before. The question is: why was he impeached? Even if Fayose says there was a gang-up, are there no traces of fact in the allegations against him," he asked.