The intrigues over the All Progressives Congress, APC governorship ticket in Ogun State would only produce a disastrous result for the party.
Unlike most political conflicts that end up either making or marring parties and actors, the wages of the Ogun crisis seems far worse. As things are, the party’s survival in the state is predicated on the ability to resolve the impasse, which has become hydra-headed.
Unfortunately, most actions that seem like troubleshooting efforts on the matter have largely ended up expanding the scale of the controversy. Why would an intra-party crisis become this messy? Who are those fanning the embers and in whose interest? These questions readily come up each time one ponders on the Ogun scenario.
The matter presents a clear case of promotion of aberration and authoritarianism over party norms and values. Since the remote and immediate causes of the crisis, are fresh occurrences, one needs not dwell on them. But exposing the lies being fed to the public by the APC national leadership is quite necessary.
A few days ago, Mr. Lanre Issa Onilu, who identified himself as the National Publicity Secretary of the APC, went to town with a baseless and unfounded narrative about the Ogun ticket. Obviously acting the script of the Adams Oshiomhole-led national leadership, Onilu, with his lies, justified the illegality that produced Dapo Abiodun, who is a claimant to the ticket.
Anyone conversant with the buildup to the primary in Ogun and Governor Amosun’s commitment to transparency would only dismiss this tissue of lies. As a committed party member in the state, I was a witness to pre and post primary election events.
Therefore, I won’t allow the concocted story to fly without dismissing it with nothing but the truth. In the interest of truth, we want Onilu and his handlers to convincingly respond to these questions being asked by Ogun APC members.
Which court gave the injunction he claimed to exist and when? Who are the parties in the case? If at all there is, did the national secretariat bring it to the attention of the state executive council of the party? Was the injunction given on a weekend or on October 1 because the National Secretariat engaged the state executive of the party on the primary all through the weekend leading to the October 2 primary. Besides, where did the primary that produced Dapo Abiodun hold? This particular question is key to understanding the fraud being elevated by those, who don’t mean well for the state.
Instructively, the primary was scheduled to hold on October 1. When it did not hold, the state government extended the school holiday of October 1 by one day so that school premises that were designated venues for the primaries would be available.
The venues were used for the primaries on October 2 and the schools resumed on October 3. So, where did the primary that produced Dapo Abiodun hold?
It is instructive that while the video footage of the October 2 primaries in all the 236 wards in the state had been put in public domain, the Dapo Abiodun primary remain only in the imagination of these perpetrators of fraud. Where did Dapo Abiodun cast his vote?
There are 236 wards in Ogun State and only 12 election committee members were sent in from Abuja. Did 12 panel members conduct primaries simultaneously in 236 wards? Did the panel assemble a local election committee as provided by the party guidelines without the knowledge and input of the governor and the state, local government and ward executives of the party?
Onilu alleged that Gov Amosun resorted to self- help hence the non- recognition of the October 2 primaries. The question is, whether the declaration of the result by the chairman of APC in the same exercise in Lagos State, differ from what happened in Ogun State?
If the gubernatorial primary was cancelled because of the allegation made by Onilu, what was responsible for the tampering with the outcome of the National Assembly and state Assembly primaries conducted by the panel set up by the National Working Committee, led by Col. Ali Ciroma? Oshiomhole removed four of the nine winners of the primaries and replaced them with acolytes of Dapo Abiodun. Was the election conducted by the NWC panel also rejected because of self-help?
Only unbiased responses to these questions could give credence to Onilu’s conjecture, but the prospects of such from a compromised leadership are nothing but slim. Superficially, the governor seems like the target but the real victim is President Muhammadu Buhari, whose core loyalists have been at the receiving end of the party crisis. The game plan as has been discovered, is to decimate the rank of the president’s men with a view to enthroning a new set of people, whose loyalty would be to those behind the crisis.
* Boluwatife Bamisaye, writes from Odogbolu, Ogun State