Seasoned journalist and the Managing Director/CEO, of The News/PM News newspapers, Mr. Bayo Onanuga on Sunday declared his interest in the Ogun East Senatorial District seat in the next general elections in Ogun State.
The veteran pen pusher, while making the declaration in Ijebu-Ode in Ijebu-Ode local government, revealed that he is contesting for the seat on the platform of the All Progressives Congress(APC).
Ogun East Senatorial District consists of nine local government, with Ijebu axis having six local government areas while Remo has three LGA’s.
Onanuga who was a member of the Youth Wing of the Unity Party of Nigeria as a student of the University of Lagos in 1979, further stated that part of his intention in entering politics is to help reduce the poverty level in the district and Ogun state in general.
Onanuga, a member of Egbe Bobakeye age group in Ijebuland, explained that he was encouraged by his people to come and contest the seat.
According to him, “over 90 percent of the people of the nation are living below poverty level. My priority is to reduce poverty and help in finding jobs for the teeming unemployed youths,”, he stated.
The journalist guru however, expressed disgust at the inability the federal government to provide for the welfare of the people, including retirees.
Onanuga emphasised that he is not into politics to amass wealth, but rather, to better the living standard of his people, thereby, maintaining that, “politics is not a do or die affair for him”.
Speaking at the event,the former Chief Press Secretary to the former governor of Ogun State and the Director of Publicity, PDP in Ogun State, Wale Adedayo said the coming out of Onanuga to vie for the Senate seat is a welcome development, noting that, “his coming out gladdens my heart and I believe,he will be a good candidate”.
Speaking with newsmen, the party Chairman in Ijebu-Ode, Hon. Ladi Lekuti, said Onanuga’s entry in the senatorial race is apt, noting that, it is long overdue for an Ijebu-Ode native to occupy the Senatorial seat of the district.
Lekuti however, assured that he would be able to convince other members of APC in the other eight local governments in the district to support the aspirant, due to his unblemished records.
Also commenting on the decision , the former caretaker Chairman of the Ijebu-Ode local government, Alhaji Raheem Saromi stated that he was happy that Bayo Onanuga submitted himself to serve the people because, “he is going to make a great change in our district”.
The event was attended by party members from all the wards in Ijebu Ode local government area including Wale Adedayo, former Chief Press Secretary to Governor Gbenga Daniel, the women leader, Mrs. Wura Arigbabuwo, Mrs. Bisi Balogun, Coordinator(Women Advancement Forum(WAFO), Ijebu Ode local government, youth leaders among others.
Adebayo Onanuga,popularly known as Bayo Onanuga was born into a royal house of Anikilaya in Ijebu Ode in June 1957.
His father was Alhaji Mustapha Onanuga, a.k.a Captain while his mother was Mrs Omomeji Ansanat Onanuga, nee Koko, both of blessed memory.
He attended Moslem Primary School, Isoku and Ijebu Muslim College, both in Ijebu Ode for his primary and secondary education.
Bayo Onanuga finished his secondary education in 1974 with distinction from the College, leading his set in the West African School Certificate Examination.
His performance in the national essay contest in honour of the assassinated American leader, John F.Kennedy, in which he emerged as the best in the then Western region and second best nationally won him a scholarship award in any of the nation university as a JFK Scholar.
During his NYSC year in Ondo State between 1980 and 1981, he was the editor of the Ondo Corper,the magazine produced by the Corps members and his performance won him a State Merit award.
He was among the pioneering staff of OGTV in 1982, where he worked for a year and a month before he resigned to pursue career in newspapering business.
Onanuga joined The Guardian as one of the pioneer-staff and later left to try his own newspaper, The Weekly Titbits,which could not survive after two editions.
He later joined the National Concord as a Senior Features Writer in 1985 and rose to become the Editor of the African Concord magazine, where he resigned in April 1992 due to insistence by the Publisher of the magazine, Late Bashorun M.K.O.Abiola that he should apologise to then Head of State, Gen.Ibrahim Babangida, over a story.
The development made Onanuga and his Senior Editorial staff to found The News magazine in 1993.
The Ijebu Ode born journalist was among many Nigerians who suffered a lot of persecution during the military era in the country and fled into exile in December 1997 to team up with NADECO chiefs to fight the tyrannical rule in the country then.