For days now, I have kept myself updated with the countless allegations against the Interim Chairman of OSRC and OrangeFM, Mr ‘Kunle Adebayo, from concerned Ondo state people who are really desirous of a true and working radiovision outfit. I have also read from different groups, domiciled in Ondo State too, who have raised their voices against the person and character of the Chairman and his poor, autocratic management of the stations.
I waited for his response. I wanted to confirm if those allegations are baseless so the ‘project’ could easily be abandoned by the accusers while the public wave it off as one of those media trial against a very upright, decent, working and responsible official of the Ondo State government.
I was disappointed!
His defence, which came out as some sort of accusation, was watery, undefendable, political and had, written all over it, the writings of one who is condescending, arrogant, power drunk and confident he has the ears and assurances of the real power brokers inside the Alagbaka Government House. He accused the ‘perpetrators’ of being willful tools in the hands of the PDP, the major opposition party in Ondo. He also fingered many unnamed current and ex staff of OSRC and OrangeFM as the brains behind the social media attacks on his person. He asked why he won't deal with some staff members who got undue advantage(s) from the PDP before the coming of Arakunrin Akeredolu.
I do not get involved in character assassination or laundering of images of both private and public officials, yet some of the things few of us know about Mr ‘Kunle Adebayo must be brought to the public for His Excellency, Arakunrin Akeredolu, to wade in and save the stations and also his political career hanging in the loose if he continues to associate with and retain him as the boss of our own OSRC and OrangeFM.
May I ask why Mr. Governor, listening to the ‘professional’ advice from his GM, shut down our old and lovely 96.5fm? This is a station inside the massive compound of OSRC, using the same generator and staff. 96.5fm would compete with any Nigerian radio station with just little upgrade to the facilities, rebranding and repackaging, renovating the buildings and bringing on more competent hands and it'd be on top the ladder. Why shut down the station when it can make more money into the coffers of the state government?
It's even on record that OrangeFM is now the only station making money for the government while OSRC TV, with all monies pumped into it, has remained like a horse galloping away in a book, useless and making no financial return into the government purse. It's also confirmed that the ‘rebranded’ OSRC TV we watch at home is the work of excellent software guys showing what's not for us. I'm a frequent visitor to OSRC and I know better.
There's a serious allegation that the Interim Chairman of OSRC and OrangeFM, Mr ‘Kunle Adebayo, was dismissed from Adeyemi College of Education, Ondo on crimes of rape. He was alleged to have committed the crime, relieved of his job and had to change his name from ‘Kunle Ogunwale to ‘Kunle Adebayo. Someone of such questionable and flawed character shouldn't handle the media houses of the good people of Ondo State. Or what do we tell our children when we grow up? That a serial rapist once headed OSRC?
And while hundreds of competent, qualified, professional hands of Ondo State are ready to move the stations forward, ‘Kunle Adebayo, from Osun State(or the State of Osun like the former governor wanted) heads our OSRC. It's unacceptable, unwise and unreasonable. Ondo state is blessed with media gurus that could turn the fates of OSRC around in no time. Would Arakunrin Akeredolu overlook this? Would he retrieve our media houses from him and hand it back to the professionals who wouldn't toy with the standard of the stations? Why would Arakunrin Akeredolu allow an outside destroy our heritage?
About the standards, I have stopped listening to most of the programs shoved down our throats by OrangeFM. That station is dying. The programs are losing followers. The station's rating is getting lower. The equipment are becoming outdated. The other day, I was on a program for an hour and sweated all through. The AC wasn't working and I had to make do with a paper to fan. In the 21st century? A radio station with the studio heating up?
There's also an allegation that Mr Kunle Adebayo collects monies from OSRC and OrangeFM for workshops and seminars only to sit at home and wine and dine away with our money. I saw a mighty mansion he’s allegedly building at the Ijapo Extension of Akure. This edifice could only be erected by one who wasn’t a landlord few months ago but just had access to some slush funds. He has also been accused of suffocating and stifling staff members with opposing views and opinions to his autocracy and highhandedness.
The straw that broke the camel's back was the allegation I read this evening against him by a group accusing him of using OrangeFM for some political programmes without remitting the millions of naira to the coffers of the station. I remember Arakunrin Akeredolu made a pronouncement that state-owned media houses must not be used for free by candidates and aspirants from his own party. This prompted this long epistle and I'm committed to seeing it to the end.
Arakunrin Akeredolu, for his own good, must do the needful by revamping our dying OSRC and set us back on the right path by:
Setting up a Panel of Enquiries to investigate these weighty allegations;
Relieving Mr. ‘Kunle Adebayo of his duties pending the reports from the panel;
Bringing back our beloved and upgraded 96.5fm;
Separating these three stations by appointing substantive General Managers for each of them. OSRC TV, OSRC 96.5FM and Orange 94.5FM;
Reviewing all the anti-worker policies that have dampened the morale of the staff.
Arakunrin Akeredolu must, in earnest, save our dying heritage as we would leave no stone unturned to retrieve the lovely stations from the bad manager of men and our media houses.