The supremacy battle between Governor of Ogun State, Sentaor Ibikunle Amosun and Chief Olusegun Osoba, a former governor of the state and kingmaker in the All Progressive Congress (APC) is already giving party members in the state and the federation a cause for concern.
It is their belief that if nothing is done by the party to urgently resolve the lingering political tussle between the two, the crisis might spell doom for the party in future elections.
Also, the newly launched APC in the state is already witnessing signs of disintegration, as members of the defunct Congress for Progressive Change (CPC) and the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) are currently embroiled in a squabble over the choice of members appointed into executive positions of the APC.
The quarrel between Osoba and Amosun became pronounced recently when the former governor and some of his loyalists within the party shunned the launch of and flag-flying of APC in the state, a ceremony that brought together heavyweights of the party.
Those absent include the three senators of the state, nine members of the House of Representatives and 22 members of the Ogun State House of Assembly, all believed to be loyal to Osoba.
At the event, Amosun boasted of an APC that had come to stay, saying the party has a solid root in all the geo-political zones of the country like APC. He appealed to members of the party to be good reference point for all other states.
“So, let us join hands together for the success of our party,” he had said.
But beneath the high praise for the party at the event, the absence of many of its chieftains made it obvious that all was not well. Few days after the launch, Osoba, in collaboration with some federal lawmakers, went ahead to anoint former running mate of the ACN presidential candidate in the 2011 presidential election, Fola Adeola, as a possible replacement for Amosun who is also desperately desiring a second term in office.
Though Adeola has denied his alleged nomination, the belief within the party is that Osoba wanted to use him to get his pound of flesh from the governor, who is seen as not dancing to his whims. This quarrel between the two politicians has extended to the state House of Assembly where there are currently two factions, each loyal to the Osoba and Amosun.
It also resulted in the inability of the governor to secure the approval of the House for a N150bn bond, as those loyal to Osoba believe the approval would give him the financial war-chest against Osoba and other perceived enemies. While the party in the state is struggling with this power struggle between the two, the governorship candidate of the Congress for Progressive Change (CPC) during the 2011 gubernatorial election, Comrade Olawale Okunniyi and some of the state leaders of the party have begun to question the alleged inequality within the APC in the state.
According to them, the nomination and appointment of mostly members of the defunct ACN into the interim leadership of the party in the state calls for a query. They alleged that such appointments did not follow the party guidelines for the party structure in the state.
Okunniyi said that as far as he understands, those claiming to be acting as interim officers of the APC in Ogun State are desperate politicians, wanting to bring their negative tendencies into the new party without recourse to members of the other opposition parties that came together for the formation of the APC.
Okunniyi, a contender for the governorship seat in 2015, said he was absent from the launch of the APC in the state because he was not formally invited by the organisers or contacted by them. He rejected the appointment of interim executive officers or the state steering team, saying no decision concerning the appointments was jointly taken.
“We are seriously perturbed by the display of crass opportunism by some self-seeking leaders of APC in Ogun State. We wish to condemn in strongest terms the usurpation of party authority by these set of ambitious elements within our new mega formation, as their illegitimate attempt to hijack the party structure before formal registration of membership is capable of inciting early disaffection and bad blood within the prospective mega party,” he said.
“Moreover, having consulted thoroughly with the arrow heads and key leaders of both ACN and ANPP in the state, we wish to put it on record that at no time and no where did the party caucus or its stakeholders meet to take such very crucial decision as to appointing members of interim steering committee of the party, since there has been no directive and guideline yet from the national headquarters on the template for operational procedure and sharing of party offices at the state level.”
It is not known yet how these current political problems would be resolved, but party faithful in the state have expressed fears of the crisis snowballing into a bigger capable of swallowing the party in the state.
Source: Huhu Online
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