Ogun LG Poll : Protesters Storm APC Secretariat, Reject Imposition Of Candidate In Odogbolu - THE DAILY CRUCIBLE



Tuesday, June 22, 2021

Ogun LG Poll : Protesters Storm APC Secretariat, Reject Imposition Of Candidate In Odogbolu

...Protesters Insist On Choice Of Ola Olufunmilayo As Party Candidate

... We'll Address All Concerns But Allegation Of Imposition Is Speculative - Oladunjoye 

By Ayobami Ife, Abeokuta

The seeming crisis within Ogun State chapter of the All Progressives Congress (APC) over the choice of candidates for the forthcoming July 24 Local Government elections in the State took a worrisome  dimension on Tuesday as aggrieved  members and stakeholders stormed the Party''s State Secretariat to register their total rejection of imposition of chairmanship candidate on them in Odogbolu Local Government Area.

The protesting APC members and stakeholders under the aegis of Movement for Progressive Change(MPC) lamented that the Ogun Local government primary election which the APC constitution specifically stated that a candidate must emerge through a direct or indirect primaries or via consensus option has been scuttled in Odogbolu local government.

Armed with placards of various inscriptions, the protesters occupied the State Secretariat Aof APC on Abiola Way,  Abeokuta, the State capital, demanding that  an aspirant, Ola  Olufunmilayo, who they said emerged winner of the chairmanship primaries for Odogbolu, be given the ticket to run as candidate of the party. 

They claimed he polled 13 votes to defeat his opponent who scored seven votes,  expressibg the shock and disappointment that after Olufunmilayo had been pronounced winner by the party leaders, including governor Dapo Abiodun, the ticket was later given to someone else. 

Although, there was no party officials to attend to them but the Coordinator of the group, Abimbola Ajayi, who addressed newsmen from a prepared speech on behalf of the protesters, said the alleged usurpation of the wishes of the party members in Odogbolu in respect of their expressed choice in Ola Olufunmilayo must not be allowed to stand. 

Abimbola accused governor Dapo Abiodun of working to foist his choice candidate on them. 

He  noted that the alleged usurpation of the resolutions of the leaders in Odogbolu without any genuine or reasonable reason and imposed his choice candidate on them would be a recipe for destructive political crisis in the local government .

He appealed to leaders of the party, including President Muhammadu Buhari, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, Chief Segun Osoba and governor Mai Mala Buni (APC Caretaker Committee Chairman) to intervene and drew to their attention to the fact that Ogun APC was at peace and in unity under the leadership of the state Caretaker Committee Chairman, Chief Yemisi Sanusi until the governor began to foist his choice of chairmanship candidate on party members.

Abimbola said: "The three successful aspirants from Odogbolu Local Government was sent to the governor and all other local govternments did same. Further directives came from the governor again wherefore he summoned all the leaders to Abeokuta (Presidential Lodge) and told them he would not want to impose any candidate on any local govt, thereby telling them to choose one out of the three submitted there and then,Odogbolu leaders were the first to come to a resolve through a voting process which produced Hon. Ola Olufunmilayo.

"The name was submitted to the governor and he made the pronouncement of Ola Olufunmilayo as the name submitted for the consensus candidate of Odogbolu local government and he further asked if there was any dissenting voice(s) against the pick which none of the leaders seated objected to.

"But to the shocking dismay of the entire party leadership of  Odogbolu local government, His Excellency,  governor Dapo Abiodun upturned the resolutions of the leaders without any genuine or reasonable reason and imposed his choice candidate on the populace thereby setting the whole Odogbolu political atmosphere in a dire strait and confusion.

"Now the  question on the lips of all party stalwarts in Odogbolu local government is; since the governor already has another plan in mind to impose his own candidate on the party and leaders, why did he subject the leaders to go through all the rigmaroles of screening ? This act by the governor has created more than enough ene
enmities within major APC Stakeholders in Odogbolu local government.

"This may also cause major disunity among towns in Odogbolu LG, as the last Executive chairman(two terms) was from the same town, Aiyepe as the imposed candidate of Governor Dapo ABIODUN while Okun Owa, the town of the polular consensus candidate has never been privileged to occupy this position at any time.

"We are appealing to the party leadership at the national level and also the national leader of the APC, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, our Southwest leaders and Ogun State as well to as a matter of urgency intervene in this matter and save our dear party ,the APC from total collapse in Odogbolu local govt and Ogun state in general as 2023 is just around the corner."

However, the party in its reaction, said it is addressing all concerns expressed by the people in respect of the primaries and outcome.

Speaking through the Publicity Secretary, Tunde Oladunjoye,  Ogun APC Caretaker Committee added the allegation of imposition of candidate is a mere speculation.

"That's speculative. I want to let you know that only one person can occupy an elective office at a time. There will be complaints. 

" That's part of party politics. I can assure you the party is addressing all concerns," Oladunjoye  said. 

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