OrderPaperToday – Come Saturday November 21, the people of Kogi State will go to the polls to choose their next governor. The choice is basically between incumbent governor, Capt. Idris Wada of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and former governor, Abubakar Audu of the All Progressives Congress (APC).

But of interest here is the individual, James Abiodun Faleke, who is the running mate to Audu. A Lagos boy of the Bola Ahmed Tinubu school of politics, Faleke’s nomination had caused a huge uproar among stakeholders within the APC in Kogi as many see the hand of Esau but hear the voice of Jacob in the whole scenario. They are wary of the long arm of the lion of Bourdillon and are suspicious that the patrimony of the state will be shared to political kingpins outside the state.

Faleke is currently a second term member of the House of Representatives. He represents Ikeja federal constituency of Lagos State and is chairman of the House committee on Customs and Excise, a grade ‘A’ committee in the scheme of things.

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Born of Kogi heritage from Ekirin Adde in Ijumu Local Government Area of the State, Faleke has always been a politician in Lagos State. He served two terms as chairman of Ojodu Local Council Development Area (LCDA) before ascending to the House of Representatives in 2011. As a demonstration of his grassroots grasp of Lagos politics, he had served as chairman of Forum 57, a cluster association of LGAs and LCDA bosses in Lagos State.

He is not known to have any political ties with Kogi and his nomination, believed to have been influenced by Tinubu, has alienated some interests within the APC in the state, a development which may count against the party in the polls. But the APC wins the polls, Faleke will join other members of the Tinubu school who were groomed in the politics of Lagos but went on to become notable leaders in their states of origin. Osun State governor, Rauf Aregbesola, is easily the captain of the alumni league of Bourdillon politics.



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