The Man Omisore: His Rising Political Profile


For the past 2 years, Senator Iyiola Omisore has been actively involved in the running of his engineering business. Infact, since he left the Senate in 2015 he had gone ahead to revive all his businesses. Not only did he complete his doctoral course in Infrastructure Finance, he began to promote a new area of engineering, called Project Management. Of course, he hasn’t totally abandoned Politics. He has also been active both at the state and national level. But the big news now is that Senator Iyiola Omisore is set to run for Osun governorship come 2018. And he is dead serious about it.

Already, he has set up a formidable political machine that has become fully operational, both within and outside the state. For months now, he has been spending quality time with his people in Osun and many of them have bought into his political project. City People gathered that he is fully on ground in all the local government areas and senatorial districts. He has also reawakened all his old grassroot structures across the state which he has had since his days as deputy governor to Chief Bisi Akande. And this time around he believes he will win the governorship hands down. When City People met him last week, he said matter of factly that he will beat any other aspirant that comes out. “I am the aspirant to beat,” he said. “Don’t forget I am the most experienced professional politician in the race. I have been Deputy Governor of Osun and I have been a Senator.”

What many don’t know is that Omisore’s involvement in politics dates back to when he was young. It didn’t just start now. It started early in life as his family has always been involved in politics both at sub-national and national levels.

In the transition years of the Babangida Administration, he was involved in the Social Democratic Party (SDP) and later became a member of the Grassroots Democratic Movement (GDM), UNCP in the Abacha years, during the Gen. Abubakar transition years he got involved with the PAN Yoruba group Afenifere (a pro-democratic activist group largely in South West Nigeria), where he was Caucus leader for Osun State and the south west region of Nigeria. It was natural for him to have been involved in the formation of People’s Democratic Party (PDP), All People’s Party (APP) and finally Alliance for Democracy (AD) where he was a top financial backer.
Many don’t also know that during his tenure in the upper legislative chamber, Senator Omisore distinguished himself not only in name but also by the key positions he held and the achievements recorded during this period at all levels of governance.
Key positions held include: •Chairman, Senate Committee on Industries, 2004 – 2005, •Chairman, Senate Committee on Intergovernmental Affairs, 2005 – 2007, •Chairman, Joint Finance Committee, •Chairman, Senate Committee on Culture and Tourism, 2007 – Date, •Chairman, Senate Committee on Appropriations (2007 -2011), •Chairman, UNDP/NASS Support Implementation Committee (2007 – 2011), •Chairman, Board of Fellows, Institute of Public Administration of Nigeria.
While he was Chairman, Senate Committee on Appropriation, he worked with other members of the committee over 4 rounds of national budget reviews and allocation, increasing national investments in infrastructure, economic and social development as well as championing civic engagement in what has become nationally recognized as the ‘Inclusive national budgeting initiative’. Using this platform he transformed the appropriations processes into an evidence and people responsive process, taking on publicly solicited citizens and institutional perspectives to guide allocations and appropriations. While this often meant that long and challenging negotiations were required with the executive and implementing ministries departments and agencies, Dr. Omisore’s leadership and people skills kept all views and thoughts included until a shared budgetary consensus was achieved.
Dr. Omsiore further worked with global institutions and national civil society organizations to ensure that there is alignment between overseas development assistance and national budgeting and appropriation process, proposing for legislative action to support improved research evidence support alignment while focusing on improved budgeting performance and results.
The overarching objective was to ensure of his work over the 4 year period as Chairman of the Appropriations Committee of the Upper Legislative Chamber of the Nigerian Assembly was to transform budgeting and appropriation into Socially Desirable Projects with sustained impact on national development. His work development assistance and performance with effective engagement of civil society is recognized by the International Health Partnership Plus and other international agencies
Omisore used his office to improve the level of Infrastructural development of the nation, especially road and water supply infrastructures network. He used his office to facilitate bold and transformative investments of the national budget in Infrastructure, health and human capital development (education, youth development and economic empowerment). Many of these projects reflect the deployment of his professional capacity and a commitment to bridge the infrastructure gaps in national development and economic growth.

Some of his key achievements include:
(a) Dualization of Ilorin-Ogbomosho-Ibadan road (b) Repair of Ibadan road (c) Dualisation of Ijebu Ode-Ibadan road, Ondo-Akure, Ore-Ondo, Ore-Ipele-Lokoja, Abuja-Lokoja-Okene, Akure-Ado Ekiti, Ado-Ifaki, Aramoko-Ado-Ijero and Gbongan-Sekona-Osogbo roads.
(d) Reconstruction of Oja-Ife market and expansion of the stall to 24, with further provision of fund for electrification of the market, sinking of boreholes, Provision of burglary proof e.t.c. and rehabilitation of the stall owners (e) Rural Electrification @villages in Osun east (f) UNESCO Cultural Centre (also a tourism) (g) Multipurpose dams in Ife-Ijesha, Oyan, Yemoji, Ijebu Ode, Ogbese (h) Dredging of erosion channels from Oke-Eso to Alapata to Ondo Road and from Ilode to Mokuro to Esinmirin
(i) Rehabilitation of Ife-Ipetu-Ilesa-Akure road (j) Oora stream channelization (k) Facilitated Projects in OAU (l) Rehabilitation of Ife Ondo Road (m) Solar powered boreholeds at various locations in Ile-Ife, Osun East (n) Solar powered streed lighting at vaious locationsin Ife, Ilesha and Osun Estate (o) Injection sub-station 132/33kv at Imo in Ilesha (p) Dualization of Mayfair-Lagere-Enuwa-Moore-Ilesha Bye pass-Akure (q) Rehabilitation of Ife-Ibadan Road (r) Secondary pipe distribution to Iwo water works

(a) Facilitated Projects in OAUTH Human Capital Development (Education, Youth Development and Economic Empowerment) (a) Living Spring Free Trade Zone, Oshogbo (b) NAPEP (c) SMEDAN
Although he lost his seat to the senate in the national elections of 2011, Dr. Iyiola Omisore remains undaunted in his commitment to the development of Osun State, as well as the overall stability and economic progress of Nigeria. He retained his extensive ties with the legislative and executive process to ensure sustained investments in all the projects above, and contribute to national directions adopting concessional and the public private financing approach for sustained impact.
What is his pedigree like? We can tell you. Senator Iyiola Ajani Omisore is the grandson of Lowa Omisore. His father is Oba David Olajide Omisore of Ayepe, Olode, Ile-Ife.
Senator Iyiola Ajani Omisore was born in Ile Ife, Osun State, on 15 September 1957 into a royal family line of the people of Ile-Ife, the cradle of the Yoruba race. Senator Omisore is also the grandson of the Late Olufewara Kabiyesi Oba Titus Adetoba of the Oseganderuku ruling house in Ifewara where his mother, Princess Emila Adejola ruled as Regent until her death in 2006. Iyiola grew up in Ile-Ife, in a very large and extended family where diligence, integrity and community service were part of both his heritage and leadership responsibility as royalty.
His parents were devout Christians and members of the SS Peter & Paul Catholic Church Lagere Ile Ife. Iyiola grew up and served as an altar boy to the priests, learning both the value of giving as well as tolerance for all religions and people. It was at this point that Iyiola started demonstrating the qualities of forthrightness; keen intellect and uprightness which not only set him apart from his peers but prepared him for community leadership and service.

He had his primary education at the SS Peter and Paul Roman Catholic School in Ile-Ife and his secondary education at St. John Grammar School Ile Ife Osun State from 1972 – 1977, where he excelled. He later attended Federal Polytechnic Owo in Ondo State Nigeria. He later sat for and passed his Full Technological Certificate Examinations at the Technology College, Reading UK, and obtained a diploma Certificate in Electrical/Electronics Engineering.

He also holds a Bachelor of Engineering Degree in Power and Machines from Brunnel University Uxbridge, United Kingdom, a postgraduate Certificate in Building service and Engineering Management and a Master of Science Degree in Building Services from the same University. Later, he went to Brunel University, Uxbridge, UK where he earned a Post Graduate Certificate in Mechanical Engineering and an M.Sc degree in Building Services Engineering.

At present, the senator holds a Ph.D in Infrastructure Finance from the International School of Management, Paris, France and he is currently undergoing his DBA programme at the same institution. In his pursuit of excellence, the Senator who is equally a Fellow of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, England and Wales underwent several courses in different high profile institutions.

He did the Advanced Budgeting Course at the George Town University, Washington DC, USA; the Appropriations and Public Finance Course at the ABS Academy, Athens, Greece; the Advanced Leadership Course at the University of Carolina; The Innovation and Leadership Course at the West London College; the Public Finance Course at the Harvard University and the Aid Effectiveness and Donour Harmonization Course at the Internationale Weiterbildung und Entwicklung gGmbH, Germany.

In January 2013, he completed and was awarded a Doctorate Degree by the International School of Management in Paris. He majored in Procurement, Taxation, Corporate Governance, Infrastructure finance and Public Private Partnerships. The concept of Public Private Partnerships is a key part of the strategy that has been successfully used to provide affordable infrastructure that meets public needs. The concept combines the best capabilities of the Public and Private sectors for mutual benefit.

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