Qudirat Hakeem-Apanpa, Ibadan
WITH three clear months to its October governorship primaries, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Oyo State is currently engulfed in crisis over which section of the state will fly its ticket for the coveted seat.
Reacting to Sunday’s meeting of aspirants Ibadan who appealed to the party’s leadership to zone the governorship ticket to Ibadanland, a forum rooting for former Governor Adebayo Alao-Akala described the resolution as needless and an unproductive gang up.
Alao-Akala hails from the Ogbomoso axis of the state.
The aspirants included former Senate Leader, Senator Teslim Folarin; former Deputy-Governor, Hazeem Gbolarumi; Seyi Makinde, Professors Soji Adejumo and Taoheed Adedoja, Dr. Azeez Adeduntan and Elder Wole Oyelese.
The Ibadan aspirants had stated in a communiqué released at the end of the meeting, that “given the political reality on ground, the PDP candidate who by the grace of Almighty God will be the next governor of Oyo State must come from Ibadan land”.
But at a meeting on Monday held at the ‘Legacy House’, the Alao-Akala 2011 re-electioneering campaign headquarters in Ibadan, a group comprising different office holders during Akala’s administration said: “We have passed through this stage before.”
The group added: “Similar gang-ups and conspiracy cost us the mandate of the people of Oyo State in 2011 and it is only a mad man that would continuously take the same route to a goal and expect to get to different destination”.
While insisting that similar gang-ups anywhere only lead to nullity, fear, failure and unpopular choices, they enjoined their kinsmen to have a rethink in the interest of the party and allow a level playing ground for a popular and acceptable candidate to emerge in order to guarantee victory for the party in the state in 2015 general election.
The forum said: “Come to think of it, if the gubernatorial position of the party is limited to a particular section, in this case as these people are canvassing, Ibadan, then, do we need to challenge or want the incumbent governor, Senator Abiola Ajimobi, who is also an Ibadan indigene to vacate this esteemed position?
“This demand is also a negation of the constitution of the PDP and that of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria which create an enabling environment for all Nigerians to aspire to any political office, irrespective of ethnic, religious and sectional background.
“We are as a result of this, calling on all our party members and good people of Oyo State to disregard this divisive and sectional sentiment that is capable of generating bad blood among our peace loving people”.