Seven members of House of Representatives from Oyo State have urged the national secretariat of the All Progressives Congress (APC) to caution Governor Abiola Ajimobi over alleged moves to subvert the result of last Sunday’s ward congress in the state.
The lawmakers described last Saturday’s attack on party leaders during a stakeholders’ meeting with congress committee members as undemocratic and barbaric.
The lawmakers are: Sunday Adepoju (Ibarapa East/Ido Federal Constituency), Olusunbo Olugbemi (Oluyole), Adedapo Lam Adesina (Ibadan North-East/Ibadan South-East), Olasupo Abiodun (Iseyin/Itesiwaju/Iwajowa/Kajola), Olugbenga Ojoawo (Ibarapa Central/Ibarapa North), Taiwo M. Akintola (Ona-Ara/Egbeda) and Segun Ogunwuyi (Ogbomoso North/Ogbomoso South).
Last Monday in Abuja, Communications Minister Adebayo Shittu engaged Ajimobi in a war of words, ostensibly on the fallout of last Saturday’s violent party stakeholders’ meeting where Shittu and others were reportedly attacked by loyalists of the governor.
In a joint statement, the members narrated how loyalists of the governor unleashed violence on them.
The statement reads: “On Sunday, May 6, the power of the people triumphed in Oyo State as members of the APC trooped out en masse to elect ward executives of the great party ahead of the local government, state congresses and national convention.
“The ward congress, which took place in all 351 wards of the state, was peaceful and orderly, marking the final end to the reign of impunity and injustice, which has for long been prevalent in our state chapter of the party, leading to the side-lining of a majority members of the party.
“As the saying goes: vox populi, vox dei; meaning that the voice of the people is the voice of God, members of the APC Unity Forum spoke in unison, despite the reign of terror and violence unleashed on our members on Saturday at a stakeholders’ meeting organised by the Congress Committee, which left many of our members battered and injured.
“In broad daylight, loyalists of Governor Ajimobi unleashed violence on our members, including Shittu, the senator representing Oyo Central, Hadjia Monsurat Sunmonu; Adepoju, Olugbemi, Lam Adesina, Abiodun, Ojoawo, Akintola, Ogunwuyi, governorship aspirant and chairman of the National Information Technology Development Agency, Prof. Adeolu Akande and Alhaji Fatai Ibikunle, among others.
“Following that dastardly act by agents of darkness and impunity, the Deputy Speaker of the Oyo State House of Assembly, Abdulwasi Musah, the APC State Deputy Chairman, Alhaji Isiaka Alimi, Lafioye Akinmoyede and members of the Congress Committee sustained different degrees of injuries.”
Accusing the governor of high-handedness, the lawmakers said: “As a matter of fact, the governor had boasted to some members of the House of Representatives in his Abuja home that the congress lists would be written and imposed. This undemocratic and vainglorious boast must have been responsible for his loyalists not paying for congress forms, an act that is in contravention of the congress guideline that forms would only be issued upon presentation of bank payment evidence.
“With the governor’s loyalists not being able to present payment evidence and subsequently not being able to purchase forms, which are the only requirements for the participation in the ward congress, while members of the APC Unity Forum had timeously paid N2,000 per ward exco and N10,000 for the chairman, it is incontestable that the authentic winners of the congress are the only people who took part in it with legitimate requirements.
“Though it was saddening to note that Governor Ajimobi could not toe the democratic line, which noble leaders of the party, like President Muhammadu Buhari and Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu toed by allowing internal democracy to prevail, we are glad to state that the will of the people eventually prevailed on Sunday, when the ward congress resulted in the victory of our members who were the only ones who paid for legitimate forms before Saturday…”
Credit: The Nation