ALL appears not well within the fold of the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Oyo State following the decision of Governor Seyi Makinde to concede some local government councils to members of the coalition political parties ahead of the planned local government election in the state.
It was reliably gathered that former members of the Oyo State House of Assembly who lost their reelection bid largely due to the ‘coalition tsunami’ which paved way for majority of the PDP candidates in the State House of Assembly are being considered as Caretaker Committee Chairmen and Secretaries in some selected local government council in the build-up to poll slated for the first quarter of next year.
Majority of the proposed Caretaker Committee Chairmen, as learnt, are likely to contest the election as substantive chairmen without any formal defection to the PDP. This has also generated mixed feelings among the members of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
Also, Mega Icon Magazine checks revealed that protests have trailed Governor Makinde’s decision as party faithful, who overtly expressed their dismay against many key appointments made so far alleging that members of the coalition parties and the governor’s cronies who were unknown to the party were offered juicy appointments and thus occupy strategic positions in the PDP led government at the detriment of loyal party members. The aggrieved PDP members are of the opinion that Governor Makinde could be promoting a selfish agenda which would end up destroying the party in the state if the trend was not reversed.
Some political parties, which included; African Democratic Congress (ADC), Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Zenith Labour Party (ZLP), Social Democratic Party (SDP) and the New Progressive Movement (NPM) had formed a coalition in the build-up to the March 9, 2019 election to dislodge the government of the All Progressives Congress (APC) and this eventually facilitated the victory of Seyi Makinde who was the PDP candidate.
Meanwhile, Governor Makinde had assured the coalition partners, drawn from various political parties and interest, of his commitment to the formation of an inclusive government. Although, recent appointments made by the governor had made some members of the coalition parties to express doubts about his commitment to their pre-election agreement, pundits are of the opinion that he (Makinde) has done well in this regard.
A prominent PDP chieftain in the state who confided in our reporter insisted that only card carrying members of the party will occupy the local government councils across the state, stressing that none of the said lawmakers stepped down for any of the party’s candidate during the election, but pursued their personal ambitions vigorously.
“The claim by the lawmakers isn’t true, they want to reap from where they did not sow. People voted massively for our party and its candidates because they wanted a change of government. Electorate in Oyo state were tired of the APC government and the only available alternative that could alleviate their plight was the PDP. So, claiming to have sacrificed their ambitions and won elections for our candidates is nothing but a scam.
“Did they rig, campaign or canvass for our House of Assembly candidates?”, he questioned.
Speaking further, the source disclosed that PDP stakeholders are seriously mounting pressure on Governor Makinde to consider the position of the party as they cannot entrust the local government councils, which is the grassroot into the hands of the oppositions on the basis of coalition or alliance which may affect the party’s electoral prosperity in future elections.
“This issue is very sensitive and we have to treat it as one. As a party, we cannot submit the councils to opposition parties in the name of coalition. Now that local government autonomy has come to stay, loyal party members must occupy our councils so as to complement our governor’s efforts in making Oyo state an envy of all. The councils cant be a bargaining tool”, the PDP source submitted.
When contacted, the party’s spokesman in the state, Engr. Akeem Olatunji maintained that Caretaker Committee is an appointment, and as the governor; Engr Makinde has the prerogative to concede some slots to the coalition parties.
“However, only card carrying members, core party faithfuls would be screened and allowed to contest on the platform of the PDP in the election slated for next year”, Olatunji emphasized.
By Idowu Ayodele
N7.6B Loan : Work With Ajimobi’s Template If …, Oyo APC Group Tells Makinde
Oyo First Initiative (OFI), a youth group within the All Progressives Congress in Oyo State has urged Governor Oluseyi Makinde to work towards sustaining the legacy of developmental governance put in place by his immediate predecessor, Senator Abiola Ajimobi, who did his best to uplift the standard of living of the people.
Apparently reacting to the controversies surrounding the plan to utilize a loan of N7.6b by the Oyo State government, OFI said in a statement issued at the weekend in Ibadan by its State Coordinator, Comrade Ayo Adekanmbi, that the present administration needed to wake up and face the business of governance with all seriousness it deserved.
“It is time Governor Makinde is told in a plain language that trying to erase the indelible footprint of Sen. Ajimobi from history book of the Pacesetter State would amount to an exercise in futility since the record of achievements of successive administrations would always be available for the whole to see. As it stands today, Ajimobi administration is adjudged the best thing to have happened to the state since its creation in 1976.
“It is on record that Sen. Ajimobi came into office in 2011 fully prepared. He realized that the bulk of resources available to the state would be going into servicing recurrent expenditures and he started laying a foundation that would yield prosperity for the state in the nearest future by prioritizing infrastructural development which revolved around improved security architecture and modern physical infrastructure.
“To realize this lofty objective, the option of controlled borrowing to finance key projects became inevitable. If the state government’s wage bill was N5.2b and the monthly allocations hovered between N2b and N4.5b for the eight year period, what magic could have produced many dualized roads in all the major cities, ultra modern overhead bridges, reliable security and effective crime control, Model schools, sustained beautification and urban renewal projects, upgrade of health/medical facilities in public hospitals and many more?
“When the Ajimobi government was working round the clock to ensure a great future for the state, Engr. Makinde made campaign of calumny the hallmark of his electioneering and this culminated in the constant inflation of the state’s debt profile on several occasions until the Debt Management Office (DMO) came up with the true picture recently.
“To set the record straight, it is true that the immediate past administration applied for the said N7.6b loan to achieve an all-encompassing agricultural development goal but the loan request did not materialize. However, similar efforts manifested in the preponderance of grants and other funds which have been collected by the Makinde administration since it came into office. For example; the $611, 000 BESDA fund and the N2.8b UBEC fund made possible after Ajimobi had paid the Counterpart Fund. Same goes for the Primary Health Care (PHC) grant and the $200m World bank intervention fund from which the past administration only spent less than 30 per cent.
“All these were monies secured by the Ajimobi administration for developmental purposes and are now accessible to the present administration without anybody raising an eyebrow since government is a continuum.
Meanwhile, the honeymoon has since been over for Engr. Makinde and it would be unfortunate if he relied on the pseudo populism which earned him the declaration as the winner of the last gubernatorial election in the state by INEC.” Adekanmbi said.
Oyo: ‘Adelabu Is Baselessly Arrogant’, Says Adeduntan
- Urges Ajimobi to Step Down
FORMER Commissioner for Health in Oyo State and governorship aspirant under the platform of All Progressives Congress (APC) in 2019, Dr. Azeez Adeduntan has attributed the monumental loss of the party to Peoples Democratic Party, (PDP) in the state to Chief Adebayo Adelabu’s arrogance .
Dr Adeduntan, also noted that the party’s governorship nominee, Chief Adelabu supposed to seek involvements of other aspirants before and after the primary but his arrogance made him felt he could win the election with the only assistance of former Governor Abiola Ajimobi.
The Otun Bashorun of Ibadanland, who stated this during a press conference with journalists on Saturday at his office in Alakia, Ibadan, the state capital also disclosed, “you can ask Ajimobi, we are very close. I told him that Seyi Makinde is my brother, we have been in this game since 2011, I may be older than Seyi Makinde but Seyi Makinde is older than me in politics, he has been in this game since 2003.
“He was first with Ladoja, he ran away when in 2007 he went to Ajimobi, he wanted to run for ANNP, he lost. He went to Baba Adedibu at Molete, he wanted to run for PDP, he was not allowed, Kamorudeen was given. He ran again in 2015, we did G7 together – Ibadan people that wanted to become governor. So, Seyi Makinde has been in this game for the past sixteen years. How can you bring somebody from Central Bank in July to come and fight somebody who has been in the bunker? It’s a fact. I told Ajimobi this and it’s on MTN, why I like technology is that it can be printed, you can quote me that I said it.
“This man is already holding down the bunker, is ready for war. I was Labour party candidate in 2011, I knew what they gave me, I was aspirant in 2015 you didn’t use us and you now have somebody that brought 100 Serena cars into town. He went further to hire Aderupoko and others who are making jest on the streets, while Seyi Makinde was going to Oyo North begging people, connecting people who can help him , you are making noise in Ibadan here. Ibadan is not the only place where they vote.
The ex-Commissioner continued, “We paid N25 million to obtain the form, how many Nigerians can burn N25 million? They brought you from the Central Bank instead of coming to some of us who have been in the game, you believe that you and Ajimobi can win, after injuring eight other people?
“What Tinubu does in Lagos is that oh Dr Adeduntan, don’t worry, you will go to the Senate, Akintola, we are going to make you an ambassador, he will satisfy everybody.
“We called him, come this gentleman, politics is not a game of accounting money in the Central Bank. You can quote me that Adeduntan said he’s an arrogant person, Adelabu is baselessly arrogant because that’s why I said no-holds-barred, I am the Otun Bashorun of Ibadanland by now. If he wants to succeed he has to go and wear the cloth of humility, if he’s going to be arrogant, not to people like us, not to Akintola, not even to Tegbe. Tegbe have first class at the University of Ife, I have MBBS with distinction, so if you did Accounting and you say you have first-class in Accounting, you’re insulting people like us.
“Accounting is just one possible subject, there are no subjects that I cannot do. Instead of coming down with humility. This man was on a high horse with Ajimobi on the streets of Ibadan and the Oyo state people were just making jest of them. So it was a monumental disaster”
Reacting to the insinuation that he has joined the PDP, a reason he congratulated Governor Seyi Makinde, Adeduntan said he is still in APC saying Makinde is his brother from the same compound in Oja-Oba, thus congratulating him has nothing to do with currying favour from him or joining PDP.
“I am saying this to you, Adeduntan is still a member of APC in Oyo State, Ajimobi is my brother, so is Seyi Makinde, we are from Ojo Oba, politics should not divide us. So, if anybody says we saw Adeduntan with Seyi Makinde, and so what? If I had won, Seyi Makinde will congratulate me. What is wrong in congratulating somebody who has won an election, does that mean Adeduntan is looking for a job from Seyi Makinde?”, he questioned.
The revered surgeon maintained that he is still in cordial relationship with former Governor Ajimobi, adding that the ex-governor has learnt his mistakes in the last election. He noted that disunity in APC enabled PDP to take power.
According to him, “APC didn’t lose the last election, PDP got governorship a la carte , we give governorship to PDP. Look at what happened in Osun state, with all the money that Adeleke had, APC still crushed him using all necessary means. It is very difficult to defeat an incumbent government, but once you become disunited, the game is over.
“For those that forgot that I contested alongside some aspirants during the 2019 governorship election on the platform of APC should recall that I did not lose in the primary election but was illegally and unconstitutionally denied the right to contest even when it was all over that my good people of Oyo State will cast their votes for me as their preferred governorship candidate, but some leaders of the party did the bidding of their paymaster.
“Oyo state is not Lagos, what Tinubu was able to escape, you cannot escape it in Oyo state, this is not a no man’s land. So what I am saying, in essence, is that you cannot come to Oyo state and say you are the leader of APC and you want to impose on the people.
“There was also no APC primary in Oyo State on September 30, 2018, but an imposition of a wrong candidate. The consequences of that failure of leadership led to the monumental failure of APC at the governorship, senatorial and state assembly and even presidential elections showing that he who sows the wind shall reap the whirlwind and that God Almighty is God of justice and will always vindicate the just.
“I have nothing personal against Ajimobi, he’s my brother and we are very brotherly. But he himself knew he made mistake, he has asked for an apology from Nigerians including me, and he’s forgiven, APC needs to move forward”, he added.
He called for comprehensive and genuine reconciliation of active APC members ahead of 2023 and urged the former governor Abiola Ajimobi to step aside and allow younger elements to take over the party in order to move it forward, just as he condemned the imposition of candidates against the wishes of other aspirants.
In his words, “APC cannot move forward if all those people that caused the trouble are still there and they are not ready to reconcile. Reconciliation comes from the mind, it comes from the heart. If APC wants to reconcile against 2023, the party must realize that it has to be one man, one vote. At least, if some of us like me would be there, it has to be a direct vote and it can not be indirect. Indirect vote killed APC in the last election.
“What I am saying, in essence, is that imposition of candidate needs to go, new leadership must emerge in APC, it cannot be the old leadership. Like I said earlier on, what is going to happen to Adeduntan between 2019 and 2023? I believe in Almighty Allah and if you’re a Christian I believe in Jesus Christ because you can’t be a Muslim without accepting Jesus Christ using the Quran. Nobody will cage Adeduntan in 2023, I don’t need APC or PDP, God Almighty will direct where Adeduntan is going to go but I am in APC right now. APC will not cage anybody.
“But, if anybody is now saying that the APC that we have today is Adelabu ‘s APC, they are deceiving themselves, because Akintola is dredging in, Tegbe and others are waiting, even Teslim and others are waiting, it must be a free party, that’s the only way APC can survive and succeed. APC will be compelled to do what it needs to do if we want to succeed as a party. APC cannot remain the way it is and succeed, if there is going to be a primary in 2023, it has to be a direct primary without anybody influencing and saying this is the person I want to impose on you.
“And let me also close that Governor Ajimobi as I said is my brother, he trained in the US, when things like this happen after this kind of disaster what I believe he should do is not even a question of calling anybody, or he himself wanted to remain, leader, I think just like Douglas said old soldiers never die; they just fade away. I think Governor Ajimobi should try to step aside a little bit, allow younger elements to take over that party, if he does not, if what he wants to do is the same thing, what happened in 2019 will be a child’s play in 2023, but I can tell you Adeduntan will not be there by the grace of God”, the ex- Commissioner concluded.
Dr Adeduntan, however thanked Olubadan of Ibadanland, His Imperial Majesty, Oba Saliu Adetunji for the honour done to him with the conferment and promise to continue to assist the people of Ibadan and by extension Oyo state.
Omo-Agege condemns alleged attacks on Oshiomhole in Benin
Senator Ovie Omo-Agege , the Deputy President of the Senate has condemned the attacks on the All Progressives Congress (APC) National Chairman, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole in Benin City, the Edo State capital.
Omo-Agege in a statement signed by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Mr. Yomi Odunuga, stated this in Abuja on Sunday.
The lawmaker, who described the development as callous, cowardly, inhumane and totally unacceptable, said this should be condemned by all, noting that political practice in the country should not be allowed to degenerate to a situation where violence becomes the language of activism by both politicians and their supporters no matter how disgruntled such persons may be.
Oshiomhole was reported to have escaped a major attempt on his life by armed thugs who swooped on his Benin residence in Okorotun Street, GRA, on Saturday. The thugs were said to have shot sporadically into the air.
The Deputy President of the Senate also called on the police to fish out the perpetrators and bring them to book.
This, he noted, will serve as a deterrent to others that political violence is not the best way to resolve conflicts, if any.
“Such criminal attack, remains utterly condemnable and illegal. Whatever their grievances, they should learn to explore dialogue rather than resort to violence.
” I call on the police to get to the root of the matter by prosecuting those involved in the act. It is my belief that the fine principles and ethos of democratic practice do have inbuilt mechanisms through which internal wranglings can be resolved without recourse to violence as it was the case in Edo State on Saturday.
“I would like to call on the parties involved to explore those options that would strengthen the party as entrenched in the constitution of the APC as that is the best way to move the state and the nation to the Next Level in which all citizens are expected to reap the dividends of the trust they reposed in the government led by President Muhammadu Buhari”, he stated.
Omo-Agege, however called on parents to warn their wards against political violence, adding that the attack negated democratic principles.