BusinessDay

Of Segun Oni’s entitlement syndrome

So what’s bad if Asiwaju Segun Oni displays an entitlement syndrome? Nothing. Absolutely nothing. In fact, everything is good about it. I dare say that Engr. Segun Oni, one-time illegal governor of Ekiti State has an inalienable right to hold on to his sentiment of entitlement. And the reasons are not far-fetched:

Foremost, Segun Oni thinks in black and white. That is, he views everything in terms of being all good or all bad. No midway. To him, there are only two kinds of people: winners and losers.

Next to the above is his fondness for blaming others for everything that goes wrong in his life. He has a phobia of accepting responsibility for his actions, he thinks it is the responsibility of others to make him happy, he likes bragging about his accomplishments and at times lie confidently, or over-exaggerates them.

Segun Oni has an excessive need for validation and admiration from his people. He hates when others are getting more attention than him. His public image is more important to him than his private image and he takes everyone for a fool that must swallow whatever he spits.

What is meant by entitlement syndrome is that sense of being owed a favour, even when little or nothing has been done to deserve a special treatment. It simply means “You all owe me.”

So who says an Engr. Segun Oni, a political juggernaut, the one who has the solution to all the problems of Ekiti, the best governor the State never had, legally speaking, is not owed by all? Who says he should not demand for his “right” from the people he intends to give his all?

Narcissism is at the very heart of it all. Segun Oni has an exaggerated sense of self-importance accompanied by fantasies of power. He proclaims himself as selfless, but he is actually selfish in his desperate crave for power. He lacks that sense of compromise, which requires of him to meet others halfway. He is entitled. He covets power and, in his thinking, deserves it more than any Ekiti born or bread, living or dead. After all, Segun Oni is the _Asiwaju,_ (one who must lead), he cannot be a follower. The seat of power in Ekiti is for Segun Oni by right. Everyone is either a competitor or irrelevant on his way to attaining that power. To be otherwise is ultra vires of the norm.

Headstrong, forceful “my way or the high way” thinking is one known attribute of Segun Oni. Meticulously but desperately, he charts and follows the route to _Oke Ayoba_. The course must be fruitful for him and no one else. But he is totally unaware of the carnage that constantly lines his path, in complete denial about holding any personal responsibility for his actions. If it fails to click, it is due to someone else’s bad tackle and such person must be answerable to Segun Oni, who is meticulous enough to achieve his heart’s desire, X factor or no.

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There is this double standard that stems from Segun Oni’s sense of entitlement. In our society built on reciprocity, Segun Oni’s standard is “What is yours is mine and what is mine is my own.” He is absolutely unyielding to the requests of others. From the people of Ekiti, he makes unrealistic demands, oblivious of the fact that his relevance comes at their expense and not his own making. He cannot imagine himself holding the door open for anyone, but that everyone must hold the door open for him, even when their arms are fully loaded.

Segun Oni overrates his own achievements whilst simultaneously underrating those of others. He creates in his head justification for his expectation of privilege.

Segun Oni should be grateful that his people keep giving him the chance to shine, despite all his failings. He often appears totally oblivious to the inconveniences he causes them by his _afemi, afemi_ attitude. For this master of self-entitlement, his watchword is _kaka ke’ku ma je sese, ka kuku fi se awadanu._ Meaning: “if I can’t have it, nobody else should, so let us scatter it.”

For Segun Oni to be crying foul at the end of every election is to be violating that strong equity maxim that forbids anyone from coming to equity with unclean hands. As far as elections are concerned in Ekiti State, whether primary or general, history is unkind to Segun Oni. He is a renowned power hijacker, who has never won and can never win any election fair and square. Oni came third in the primaries within the PDP fold, yet was imposed on those who came first and second and was eventually declared the winner at the general election. But after three and a half years of legal tussle, the appeal court sitting in Kwara State declared Oni as a usurper and declared Fayemi as the duly elected Governor of Ekiti State on 15 October 2010, thus putting an end to Oni’s Pyrrhic victory and the beginning of the October 16 swearing-in for emerging governors in Ekiti. Since then, Segun Oni has contested in no fewer than three other elections, losing all. The only time he ever flies any party’s flag is when freely gifted.

Yet a sense of superiority resides in the Ifaki-Ekiti-born self-entitled “Asiwaju” Segun Oni. His expectation of privilege is so great that it makes equality to seem like a form of oppression. Each time he falls, Segun Oni has the permanent intention of starting from the top of the ladder, ignoring the typical grafting, bottom-up approach that most others take.

So, blame not Segun Oni for approaching the court to legally wrestle with the winner of the 18 June 2022 election and take from him what he considers his own but was denied him democratically. It is his way, which can be likened to the rage and volatile emotions that accompany a sense of entitlement and which is often fuelled by an underlying shame. Segun Oni’s form of entitlement is even deeper, he is wearing it like a mask to cover a desperate need. The need to seat on the throne at any cost.

It does not require a crystal ball to predict the outcome of Segun Oni’s current _gragra._ The entitlement mentality will soon wear out, but not until Segun Oni has been drained of substance. Reason he deserves more of our pity than blame. Let us give Segun Oni time to come back to his senses, and when eventually he does, let us be large hearted enough to have him back as a Prodigal son of the soil.

Dipe writes from Ado Ekiti