By Jamiu Yisa
On Friday 11 November 2022, the Primus Inter Pares, a distinguished legislator, intelligent, resourceful, loyal and dutiful public officer; the torchbearer of the younger generation, Rt. Hon. Mudashiru Ajayi Obasa attains the golden age.
A natural born leader. His sterling qualities are exceptional. Adisa as he is fondly called by his loving mother of blessed memory, is one man who grew steadily through hard work, humility, honesty, courage discipline, prudence, and the fear of God.
Prolific and quintessential, the Agege golden son is a highly cerebral, ingenious and an intuitive leader. He is exemplary, debonair, consummate and a venerated public administrator.
Obasa’s fierce loyalty is worthy of emulation. Once he gives his words to you, you can safely go to sleep.
The proverbial cat with nine lives, he has countlessly proven to be undefeated in the face of many political storms and travails that have come his way.
Notwithstanding the difficulties he has faced and the battle he has fought within and outside his party, he remains unscathed, and still goes on in his political adventure unhindered.
Against all odds, Obasa has never fallen cheap to false allegations. Rather, he takes them as the evil machinations of his known and unknown enemies in the political turf.
As a deeply grass-rooted politician, his leadership goes beyond the Assembly where he stands as the first among equal. He made it his priority to represent his constituency very well.
Sagacious and politically-astute legislator, he mastered the ropes of lawmaking so well that he is very instrumental in any decision-making process in the state.
Obasa has always been at the forefront of innovative and progressive ideas that the State House of Assembly has become reputed for.
An uncommon legislator. His enigmatic disposition and commitment to unique representation has brought about a positive turn around to the state through his leadership acumen.
A thinker, ardent performer, a visionary and transformational leader, an agent of strategic change, and man for the people, the fifth term representative in the most vibrant state Assembly in the country has a knack for making waves at every political forum.
His speaking dexterity has always been brought to the fore in every gathering he has had reasons to address. His speaking prowess which is not only excellent but full of solutions, got him a big standing ovation at the Transcorp Hilton Hotel, Abuja in 2019 when he delivered a paper on the autonomy of the state’s judiciary and legislative arms of government.
In the presence of the 36 state governors of Nigeria, all the Speakers of the state Houses of Assembly as well as the 36 state Judges, including other representatives from the National Assembly, he displayed his oratory, holding every attendee spell-bound.
He was earlier named as a member of the committee by President Muhammadu Buhari via a press statement issued on Sunday, 9 December, 2018 by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Mr Femi Adesina.
The committee was chaired by the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami while the Senior Special Assistant to the President on National Assembly Matters, Senator Ita Enang served as the Secretary of the Committee.
Other members of the Committee were: representatives of State Judiciary: Justice N Ajanah, Chief Judge of Kogi State; Justice K Abiri, Chief Judge of Bayelsa State; Kadi Abdullahi Maikano Usman, Grand Khadi, Gombe Sharia Court of Appeal and Justice Abbazih Musa Abubakar Sadeeq, acting President of the FCT Customary Court of Appeal.
Obasa’s astute, energetic, and dynamic approach to leadership is so incisive. Powerful and respected to the extent that they play significant roles in moving the state forward excellently and progressively.
No wonder his political godfather and mentor, the National Leader and Presidential Candidate of his party, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu praised him for his exemplary role as the Speaker of the Lagos State House of Assembly.
The Jagaban of Borgu at a Stakeholders’ Meeting of the Lagos APC held at the party secretariat on ACME road, Ikeja, commended Obasa for his maturity and purposeful leadership in ensuring peace and tranquility in the House which has engendered smooth relationship with Executive arm of government which has led to the massive development and growth of the state.
“Our Speaker, Obasa is doing a fantastic job. He’s performing really well. He’s doing well and his performance has been fantastic,” he said.
The Executive Governor of Lagos State, Mr Babajide Sanwo-Olu described him as an astute politician, a dogged fighter, and a strong mobilizer of the people.
“He’s an astute politician, a dogged fighter, a man that doesn’t mince his words and also a strong mobilizer of the people. A first among equal. The man that continues to manage the huge legislative resources that Lagos State has put in his care.
“Rt. Hon. Mudashiru Obasa has indeed earned his bill. He has earned his place in the legislative arm business of direction and governance in Lagos State. I have known him long before I became the Governor. I was an honorable Commissioner myself and I have had interactions with members of the House of Assembly.
“He has continued to be a formidable member of this most esteemed house in the last eight years, where he has been at the position of leadership. We have seen purposeful governance. We have seen people oriented legislations. We have seen constructive criticisms from the legislature to the executive. We have seen huge collaborations, and separation of power between the legislature and the executive.
“I want to commend Mr Speaker for leading the pack on this journey. I see the speaker as someone that has been able to hold his 39 men in a way and manner they believe in his leadership. They agree with his leadership and see him as a true leader to each and everyone of them to work with, and ensure that all the goals and aspirations of the citizens that elected them to position are not disappointed,” he said.
Mutiu Are, an APC chieftain and member of the Governors Advisory Committee (GAC), extolled his loyalty to Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, Gov. Babajide Sanwo-Olu, state assembly and his members.
“He’s a wonderful human being. Very reliable and dedicated to the service of the state. I got to know him about 20years ago. Since then, he has been constant, loyal, reliable and a dedicated human being to the state and his associates.
“Mudashiru Ajayi Obasa has been very wonderful gentleman. A thorough legislator. The experience he has gathered at the Lagos House of Assembly cannot be quantified.
“He was at a time the Chairman of Conference of State Legislators in Nigeria. During the period, he showed his experience, commitment and dedication to his job.
“He’s a colleague at GAC. Whenever you see him stand up to make contributions, 99:9% of the time, he was always on point. I don’t want to give him 100% because we all are not perfect before Almighty Allaah. He may have his own flaws and I have mine too but above all, he has been a dedicated legislator to Lagos State. A leader per excellence, speaker of all speakers. He’s generous human being.
“He has been very cooperative with the executive. During the last primary elections of our party, for the first time, I saw the dedication in Muda. The way he fought for his members to return to the House, I have never seen the kind of dedication and sincerity of purpose.
“We were at a meeting around 2-3am and he was fighting for one legislator or the other. I was forced to asked him that is he telling us that all the 40 members should return? He said but they are all doing well. If it doesn’t damage, why do you have to replace.
“He is loyal to his members. He has been a steadfast supporter of Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu and the executive Governor of Lagos State, Mr Babajide Sanwo-Olu,” he averred.
His successor as the Chairman, Conference of Speakers of State Legislator in Nigeria, the Speaker of the Bauchi State House of Assembly, Rt. Hon. Abubakar Sulaiman, commended his leadership dexterity.
“Rt. Hon. Mudashiru Obasa is a very nice person. A very good personality. A person with seriousness and commitment to whatever he intends to do. He’s somebody that has leadership qualities. He leads by example. He led the Conference of Speakers of State Legislator to enviable heights. A lot of positive achievements were recorded during his tenure as chairman.
“I’m sure the Lagos House of Assembly, the state in general is lucky to have him as a leader and legislator. No wonder the LAHA has been recording tremendous achievements,” he said.
According to the former Speaker of the Lagos House of Assembly, Rt. Hon. Adeyemi Ikuforiji, ”I have known him as long as we were aspiring to go into the assembly in 2003. He was one of the closest person to me as the Speaker. I have fond memories of him. He is one of the guys you can say has been very consistent in his ways.
“He’s a loyalist of sort. If he believes in a course and if you are in it together, you can always rely on Obasa. You can always trust him. He’s a very reliable friend. Always loyal to his friends. I remember the time I was returning to the House for the third time as Speaker. There were conspiracies and lots of hullabaloo around that.
“Those conspiring against me knew that there was one person they need to get to their side and the person is Obasa. When they met him, they got more than they can chew. They really got more than they bargained for.
“Mudashiru didn’t even tells me what transpired. He went solo fighting the course without getting me involved. I got to know everything afterwards. He’s that kind of a person. He’s that type of a loyalist. He’s also a cheerful giver,” he said.
Chairman, House Committee on Works and Infrastructure, Hon. Tobun Mustainu described him as a disciplinarian who is reasonably and positively stubborn.
“He has been a leader of this noble House for over eight years and has been very wonderful. We have been together for the past 11years and share many things together. He’s our leader, our brother and our friend.
“He is reasonably and positively stubborn. He ensured that every parliamentarian is disciplined and represents his or her constituency adequately on the floor of the House. He has been able to instilled discipline in the parliament.
“We have learnt a lot from him as a proactive and experienced parliamentarian. Those knowledge that we learnt from him are the things we are passing to those coming behind us. That is why in the parliament, it is always good to have experience hands. It is not what you learn from the four corners of the classroom.
“Mr Speaker, Rt. Hon. Mudashiru Obasa is a very funny man, and very friendly. Sincerely, he’s reasonably and positively stubborn. What I meant is that, when he believes in a course, he pursues it with all sincerity and dexterity. He doesn’t want to know what will be the outcome.
“Sincerely, he’s a major team player. He’s somebody who will never leave any stone unturned when it comes to protecting his members, when it comes to fighting to protect the dignity and integrity of the House. He will go all out of his way.
“He’s somebody who doesn’t take chances. He has succeeded in establishing one fact in the parliament. Every parliamentarian knows that once you came late to the parliament, Rt. Honorable won’t allow you to speak. We all know him for that and it means that he encourages punctuality.
“He established that and made it known that as a parliamentarian, you must be disciplined. He thought that as a parliamentarian, we must do our jobs conscientiously without first putting the issue of money forward. We must represent our people at all times. We must work, do our overnight functions. That is when we truly represents our people which is in tandem with the provision of the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
“Therefore, when you do all that, the people you are working with will respect you. He equally thought us that we must not be lazy. We must read to perform our overnight functions and MDA’s with people who are professionals and have been doing it over the years. That means we must be steps ahead of them.
“By being a step ahead of them is not words of the mouth. It is by being dutiful, by reading and reading over time. Based on that, he has been able to expose our members to trainings and re-trainings both locally and internationally. That is why the Lagos House of Assembly is pride as a House above the Common Standard of Excellence.
“That acronym didn’t come by words of mouth, it is based on experience overtime and that is why a lot of house of assemblies and the national assembly came to borrow part of our laws for use at their different states, even at the national level.
“He has championed so many projects. We do what is called Constituency Stakeholders Meeting simultaneously across all the 40 constituents of the state. That means every member is forced to go back home to his constituents. Even those who have not been relating with their people were forced to do back to base. Having that at the back of their minds at all times, they will be forced to relate with their people and the essence of representation is to relate with people by way of giving them feedbacks while they give you the information of what you need to do at the parliament,” he said.
The state Deputy Governor, Dr. Obafemi Hamzat wished him a fantastic birthday celebration.
His words, “he’s a gentleman. He cares about the people and the state. I won’t talk about him like speaker but like Mudashiru Obasa. He’s a brother. I wish him a fantastic birthday celebration. I pray that he lives long. Am sure his best years are ahead of him”.
Jamiu Yisa is the Personal Assistant on New Media to the Rt. Hon. Speaker