The Ogun state All Progressives Congress (APC) caucus in the National Assembly has written to the Ogun state governor, Ibikunle Amosun, saying it would resist an alleged plot by the governor to chase its members out of the party in the state.
In a reply to the governor’s January 18 letter to the lawmakers (through Senator Olugbenga Obadara), the caucus accused Mr. Amosun of being behind the political crisis and consequent violence that have rocked the state in the past few weeks.
“We know your intolerant disposition,” the caucus told the governor. “That is why your threat to deal with the leaders, who SELECTED you above others aspirants is now coming to pass.
“Your intolerant disposition made people like Alh Rafiu Ogunleye, a revered party leader and former Deputy Governor to leave the party. You claimed we are romancing the opposition. That is in your dreams.
“But If you think you can chase us out like others, you are greatly mistaken. That will not work with us. We are born progressives. We are known progressives. We have NEVER changed political platforms in our lives. We are ardent believers of our late sage Chief Obafemi Awolowo. We are ardent followers of all our current leaders in the progressive family like Chief Bisi Akande, Aremo Segun Osoba, Gen Mohammed Buhari, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, etc, and shall ever remain so.”
Read full letter below.
21 January 2014.
Senator Ibikunle Amosun,
Governor, Ogun State,
Your open letter to our colleague, Senator Olugbenga Obadara in the January, 20th. 2014 edition of The Nation newspaper refers. You wrote to us, no doubt about that, as there were almost 10 different references to a perceived group Obadara belongs to. Unfortunately, you missed it .Unlike your SIA Group, we have no group outside the recognised structures of the APC. We’ve NEVER been involved in factionalisation. Whatever God has blessed us with, we extend same to the party generally and have NEVER given directives to share ANYTHING among groups, unlike instructions that treats SIA Group as a parastatal of Ogun State Government. The issues at stake do not affect Obadara or his Senatorial District alone .
Ordinarily, we should not have responded. But it is important that we put the records straight as your letter is replete with so many deliberate misinformation. Your accounts of events that took place in broad daylight at both the APC state secretariat and that of Wasimi amazes and amuses us. So, the journalists who were attacked do not know the Ogun NURTW topshot who led the thugs?
Before moving to the substantive issues you raised, some facts: There was NEVER a time we disrespected the Office of the Governor or your person. On the contrary, there have always been deliberate actions by state officials to humiliate NASS members and other leaders of the party at both official and unofficial functions. Your Excellency may have conveniently forgotten that Ogun State was in the same position yesterday before your assumption of office. Secondly, yes, you were in the Senate about one decade ago (2003 – 2007 on PDP platform). But you FAILED to realize that today’s crop of APC National Assembly members are not mere bench-warmers. We sponsor Bills, move Motions and also facilitate visible Federal projects for Ogun State. The records are there to show.
It is regrettable your assertion that we disrespect you possibly because you did not play any role in our emergence as candidates in 2011. You could not have played ANY role in our emergence because you were an aspirant like all others, including ourselves, but for different positions. No wonder you derided us after our emergence as candidates that we had NO ELECTORAL VALUE.
In your letter dated January 23, 2011 to party leaders about all of us you said:
Kunle Adeyemi ‘is considered relatively weak in electoral value’,
Segun Williams ‘was not strong nor has the resources or popularity to win’,
Taofik Buraimoh ‘has no political clout nor the wherewithal to successfully prosecute and win in the elections, his choice as candidate is alarming, ridiculous and worrisome. That he is a nobody coming to Nigeria from abroad’,
Kehinde Odeneye ‘did not enjoy the required broad-based support amongst the electorate in his own local govt – Ijebu North East’. You totally rejected him.
Alh Gbenga Kaka ‘had not enough money to contest as senator’, etc.
You did not support anyone of us with a dime. You did not campaign for us. You wrote us off. But God did not. God supported us and we won our elections even before yours. You may also want to recall that you were SELECTED by the Party Leaders, among 10 other aspirants. While you currently continue to boast that none of the current NASS members will make it back to their positions come 2015, we are resolute in our belief that it is only God who places people in positions. God is not asleep. We firmly believe it is God that’ll decide everybody’s future, not a mere mortal. In addition, what did you achieve with the NINE House of Assembly slots you got from the leaders towards the 2011 elections? You lost SIX of them to the opposition.
Harmonisation Committee and other issues
You wrote as if this committee is our creation. Meanwhile, it was created by the national leadership. That of Ogun State was delayed severally by you. But when you finally agreed to its existence, you personally picked the date (9 January 2014), the time (4pm) and venue (Presidential Lodge, Abeokuta) for its inauguration. You housed your supporters in the committee in Continental Suites, Abeokuta for two days for the same inauguration. Why are you now opposed to the same committee?
The incident involving political thugs and Senator Obadara in Wasimi, Ewekoro Local Government Area is another in a series, which we have kept quiet about for the sake of our party, the APC. The verifiable facts are already in the public domain along with those that took place at the APC secretariat in Abeokuta. But it is good you are trying to turn the facts upside down.
About our National Chairman, Chief Bisi Akande’s birthday celebration, you also missed it. Did the organizers tell you they made it mandatory for all NASS members to attend? How many members were even in the country at the time of the event, as NASS is on a short recess? Even in Osun State, where our revered Baba hails from, how many NASS members were at the event? We have a video recording of the event, which we can oblige you. At any rate, our national chairman is not the flamboyant type. In fact, he is known to place party issues above his personal interests. He would even prefer party stakeholders to be more involved in building the party at the grassroots than any other consideration.
And, is it a crime for Ogun State NASS members to choose our holiday period to interact with our people when others are spending theirs overseas?
On 2015,can you please mention ANY NASS member you have seen his poster for a second term in office? Are you not the one, who has been stage-managing endorsements for a second term in office since 2012 – barely one year after being in office? A few examples’ll suffice: Youth Leaders, Women Leaders, Party Chairmen, Councillors and Local Government Chairmen have endorsed you. The last one, which was moved by Hon. Oluomo from Ifo at the June 12 Cultural Centre, Abeokuta, was opposed by Senator Olabiyi Durojaiye. Majority of the people there were your appointees and kitchen cabinet members. In almost all the nooks and crannies of the state, your posters for second term are everywhere.
Plot against Ogun State
You should provide proof that we are either orchestrating violence or planning one, according to your so-called security reports. We are not bothered by your threat to deal with those opposed to you in the party using government apparatus. We know we are not trouble makers. But we have resolved, and firmly too that, should any harm befall us, family or supporters, we shall hold you personally responsible. Your threat after your meeting on Monday 20th January that by the time one of them (NASS member) is gunned down, others will run for cover has gotten to us.
Henceforth, all security agencies are put on notice. No member of NASS from Ogun State is known to have a violent background. Ogun State people know those with a record of violence. Besides, APC members and the good people of Ogun State know those harassing them with thugs at every twist and turn. The fact is that no member of NASS is involved in these ungodly acts.
Some posers for you:
Why do you always destabilize any political platform you join – PDP, ANPP, CPC, ACN and now APC?
Why do you like politics of intolerance and exclusion?
Why do you like to disregard party supremacy anywhere you go?
Could the above be the reason why you change party platforms always? You should please note that a political party belongs to all. APC in Ogun State is not your personal estate, where you can do whatever you want.
We know your intolerant disposition. That is why your threat to deal with the leaders, who SELECTED you above others aspirants is now coming to pass. Your intolerant disposition made people like Alh Rafiu Ogunleye, a revered party leader and former Deputy Governor to leave the party. You claimed we are romancing the opposition. That is in your dreams. But If you think you can chase us out like others, you are greatly mistaken. That will not work with us. We are born progressives. We are known progressives. We have NEVER change political platforms in our lives. We are ardent believers of our late sage Chief Obafemi Awolowo. We are ardent followers of all our current leaders in the progressive family like Chief Bisi Akande, Aremo Segun Osoba, Gen Mohammed Buhari, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, etc, and shall ever remain so.
Signed: NASS Ogun State Caucus