Tayo Ayinde: ‘Buffalo’ Can’t Be Distracted or Intimidated


Years after years, and decades after decades, diligence has continued to thrive as an enduring recipe for success and glory.

In Africa especially Nigeria, it has remained a key secret that truly loving parents pass on to their children and wards to assure excellence in all facets of life.

Undoubtedly, the glamorous results of diligence is unmistakable as typified in the success stories of outstanding Nigerians who now shine brightly in their respective fields of endeavour following years of grind, toil and labour lubricated by a deep sense and application of commitment, diligence, dedication and loyalty.

You can’t just wish such icons away simply because you don’t like their faces! They have paid their dues and has therefore emerged as an unshakable force for good respectively: Tony Elumelu of UBA, Adesola Adeduntan of FirstBank, Atedo Peterside of StanbicIBTC, Jim Ovia of Zenith in banking; Aliko Dangote, Mohammed Indimi, Femi Otedola, Tunde Folawiyo and Theophilus Danjuma in the energy and investment sectors; legal icons including Femi Falana, Afe Babalola, Wole Olanipekun, FRA Williams, Bayo Ojo and Ricky Tarfa are but a few from the long list.

Mr. Tayo Ayinde, the amiable Chief of Staff to the Lagos State Governor Babajide Sanwo-olu for both his first and second terms in office typifies diligence and loyalty, and that explains why he has evolved as a formidable force in the governance and politics of the state of excellence to the admiration of many. Of course, to the disappointment of his traducers also.

The popular scripture that “Do you see a man skillful in his work? He will stand before kings; he will not stand before obscure men (Proverbs 22.29)” aptly captures Ayinde’s enduring influence, reputation and relevance in the affairs of Lagos. Ayinde has served Lagos merritoriously with grit, zest and verve, and no one should be surprised that he’s now the admired bride. In fact, instead of hating on him, he should be emulated and used to inspire coming generation of leaders about the triumphant power of diligence and loyalty.

It’s interesting to note that while naysayers and fifth columnists labour hard in vain, recycling old lies, myths and beer parlour gossips about him, the tireless Chief of Staff fondly called Buffalo appears not bothered or distracted at all. Those close to him said they marvel at the grace and elegance with which he courageously man his core duty of smooth administration of the state in support of the mandate of his boss ignoring all distractions. According to them, Ayinde is so consumed with his passion to diligently carry out all tasks assigned by Governor Sanwo-olu towards the robust development of Lagos that he has no time for frivolities or inanities. He just keeps on moving from one pedestal to a higher one.

Faced with similar situation, an headline craving man would have gone to town screaming loud on top of his lungs and deploying all state machinery to counter the lies but Ayinde chose to face the continued rise of Lagos and remains unperturbed. His resolute belief is that all lies no matter how sugar coated can never outrun the truth.

Ayinde’s accusers need to quickly come to terms with the fact that they are chasing shadows. Buffalo’s growing popularity is merely the natural plot of a hard working man reaping the fruit of his labour and it’s understandable. Everyone around testified that Tayo Ayinde’s loyalty to his former principal, then Governor, and now President Bola Tinubu was unmatched. Ayinde was tested very well in many areas by Tinubu and he emerged outstanding. He was found dependable, resourceful, diligent and effective. Knowing who Tinubu is as a master strategist who develops potentially great leader, it wasn’t odd that they worked well. Ayinde was his chief detail for eight brilliant years when he was the governor of Lagos State. So, their close working relationship is clearly understandable. What his accusers fail to understand is that diligence and loyalty has become a second nature to Buffalo. Little wonders why he has transferred the same level of energy, devotion and loyalty he used with President Tinubu to Governor Sanwo-olu thereby fostering a cordial relationship between the duo. Pray! Which good leader throws away such a dependable aide?

It’s on record that Ayinde also served as the Director General of ICG (Independent Campaign Group) that ensured victory both at the APC primaries for Sanwo-olu as candidate and later won the election. For a man to lose his beloved wife and still led his team to electoral victory for Governor Sanwo-olu was remarkable and the governor knew that Ayinde could live up to the billing. Tinubu and the Lagos APC political family must have been very proud of Buffalo.

There have been flashes of reported rumours from a section of the media accusing Ayinde over a purported land grabbing issue. This is also another laughable blank as documents available show the land in question belongs to the Lagos State government with absolutely no link with the Chief of Staff personally. How a state property suddenly becomes a weapon in the hands of Ayinde’s traducers in their futile efforts to hit him at all costs remains to be seen by the discerning public.

Buffalo loved his late wife so dearly. He was said to have spared nothing to make Princess Adedoyin live life to the fullest. Close allies said he is still
mourning her death till date and all the negative comments on her death are mere conjectures, very fictitious and untrue, and another desperate bid of those threatened by his reputation to hold him with something. but again, they held on to a straw and have failed.