Crisis has been synonymous to the ruling party in Oyo State led by Governor Seyi Makinde. It is observed that His Excellency, is being surrounded by intellectual vegetables who would not speak the truth to him about his actions, inactions and personality most especially in the way and manners he runs the party affairs.
His attitude towards the party faithfuls from inception has always been cold, especially with his benefactor Alhaji Adebisi Olopooeyan who genuinely worked for his return to the party and securing of ticket with the support and influence of the likes of Hon Mulikat Adeola, Engr Femi Babalola and so on. He has ever since his victory distanced himself from these people who used their energy, resources and influence for his victory despite his woeful performance in 2015.
This crisis has eventually divided the party into two; Unity Forum and Omituntun/GSMist group. It’s crystal clear that if the two factions should go out for election come 2023 divided as it is now, it’s going to be a straight win for the opposition party, APC having scored huge number of votes that placed her second in 2019. The associates of GSM’s forum are either blinded to the realities or scared of losing the peanuts that drop from the table, which prevents them from being factual and objective on the challenges ahead.
Recall that GSM has set up like four different reconciliation committees that have failed not because they didn’t investigate the aggrieved’s dissatisfactions but their report was thrown to the dustbin. The first committee was led by Dr Saka Balogun, second by Prince Olagunsoye Oyinlola, third was led by Chief Bode George and fourth by Ambassador Arapaja but all efforts to get the crisis resolved proved abortive. The demands of the aggrieved was not given attention neither were they recognized by the Governor as stakeholders in the party. After all done, unity forum springs up with the mind that the battle line has been drawn by the Governor and hence, a need for unity among the authentic members of the party not minding the benefits new entrants are getting from the government. The “Unity Forum” sets up a new PDP office in Bodija area of Ibadan but the GSMists got flabbergasted about the development which led to its destruction. This did not discourage the unity of the real PDP members and leaders in the state as they continue their meetings. GSM after this realized the dangers ahead, quickly dissolved his cabinet and raised the public hope that there would be an end to PDP crisis in the state. An average man would have thought that it’s time to put technocrats aside and bring in politicians to head ministries for another electoral victory but this remains a mirage till now.
In the spirit of reconciliation and togetherness in the party, the National Reconciliation and Strategy Committee led by Dr Bukola Saraki stormed Oyo State for a peaceful meeting and way forward in August. The meeting held at Cartlon Gate Hotel Ibadan where critical issues were discussed as the aggrieved expressed their dissatisfaction over the management of the party and lopsided appointments of Governor Seyi Makinde. Sen Bukola Saraki, former Governor of Kwara state and senate President of Nigeria, appealed to both the aggrieved and GSM for a logical stand. Governor Seyi Makinde thereafter promised that he would put a call across to all the aggrieved party members and give them commissioner’s slots to start with on or before 31st of August 2021. It’s quite unfortunate that His Excellency, Gov Seyi Makinde deceived the National leaders of the party and the aggrieved as he neither called nor fulfilled his promise. This has become the norm of Gov Makinde, deceiving the party men all the time. Why did he promise when he knew he wasn’t ready for a true reconciliation? Hasn’t he dent his own image before all the national leaders and the public again? He should be reminded that a tree cannot make forest and what’s at stake is more than the former.
The aggrieved members have purchased their nomination forms for all the elective offices in the party which indicates that there would be a parallel congress in the state. It’s going to be Omituntun vs Authentic PDP members. These faces and names are known as party faithfuls both in the state and in Abuja, it means that the NWC cannot throw them off the party path. These great men and women include the former majority leader, Hon Mulikat Adeola, Alh Nureni Akanbi, Hon Muraina Ajibola (3rd term Rep member), Alh Bisi Olopoeyan, Alh Hazeem Gbolarumi, among others. Be reminded that, Gov Makinde was a product of parallel congress.
Having accused him as a liar earlier by a leader, one would have expected a change but statuquo remains the same. I wish His Excellency, would realize soonest that “politicians look for more friends daily than building walls”.
By Azeez AddulmalikConcerned PDP Member, Saki West