Like a colossus, especially one with a focused vision, Otunba Gbenga Daniel (OGD) bestrides the political terrain of the country earning honours, accolades and endorsement.
A strong believer in the maxim that politics must be conducted according to principle, not expediency and opportunism, the profound fundamental virtues and ideals of this exceptional personality cannot be exhausted let alone his sincere humanness and fine character. But even then, people should not forget that politics is not only about winning friends but also disarming opponents. Naturally Otunba Gbenga Daniel (OGD), undoubtedly an intelligent man should not be underestimated in this race.
The exceptional sterling leadership qualities of this man of destiny on the verge of making history are bound to transform to electoral gains. It has worked before in other lands, it has worked in our land it is bound to work again. To Otunba Daniel, state power is a public trust to be exercised and administered for the benefit of the people to whom it belongs.
Almost legendary is his fearlessness in condemning failures and fair mindedness in giving praise and commendation when they are merited. A man of impeccable and unimpeachable pedigree, there is no aloofness about him and many can testify to this. Also, he exhibits a firm abhorrence for self aggrandize and promotion of personal ambition at the detriment of the generality of the people. For him, accountability by public officers is a scared and inviolable principle: an avowed believer in selfless and honest devotion to public service which he has pledge to offer the people.
Here is a man whose strength is in his ability to articulate. He is seen as cerebral, blessed with a high degree of intelligence. His lucid thoughts and orderliness of presentation in any argument, in discussions and debates have always marked him out as a man to watch out for.
There is a consensus that this man is not given to intellectual brigandage. And one thing about this man is that he is deeply natural, no pretences, no phony affections.
According to him: ‘’Our people are justified to be disillusioned because we are slipping further down especially when the human and material resources are abundantly available whereas in a democracy, development should happen faster than in a dictatorship. Our destinies are in our hands. It is time for change’’.
Everything this man touches blossoms which is perhaps the demonstration of divine investment in him. For instance, in 1991 barely a year after his firm, Kresta Laurel Limited took off, he recorded an impressive turnover of over N20 million. The adventurous and visionary man that he is, he told a National Concord reporter that; “In the year (1992) we expect to achieve between N30million and N40million’’. Such is the positive foresight of a man who has risen from heights to heights soaring like a meteor.
A journalist delight, OGD will never hesitate to talk to newshounds, not even the most inquisitive will put him off. His interviews are good copies for newspapers and magazines any day; it does not matter if it was granted in his bus or car or even his cosy and tastefully furnished residence.
Once asked how he became the Deputy Managing Director at HF Schroeder at the age of 33, Otunba Daniel, quintessential and suave was as instructive as ever. Hear him: “I have worked. I have put in all I can into this company. What I was able to achieve was so overwhelming that the company had no choice but to recognise that I have worked and got results’’
For a transparently honest man of ingenuity and integrity, Otunba Daniel, as a Governor devoted his life to radically and positively change the fortunes of the generality of the people of Ogun State especially the less privileged. Said he at an occasion; “What we want to offer is the new deal, which is a clean break from the past. The people of Ogun State deserve a better deal’’.
Every era, we are told has its own icon. Without necessarily being immodest about it, the icon of this era in the Peoples Democratic Party is no other person than Otunba Gbenga Daniel. There is no gainsaying that the man is presently one of the main issues Nigerian politics.
It is often said that his Afenifere antecedents which he brought into the PDP is indeed a plus for him. It has further boosted his popularity among the hoi polloi as endorsements from people from all walks of life are coming in droves.
Yet no man is infallible as such OGD, savvy and with panache, must naturally have his foibles but unquestionably, his virtues and attributes and fine character have almost made the foibles, if ever there is any almost nonexistent. The clarion call for change for the better cannot be more strident, the PDP must wake up from its deep slumber and seize this golden opportunity to bounce back to power.