A former governor of Oyo State and chieftain of the Accord Party, Rashidi Ladoja, has indicated that he would consider invitation to return to the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP.
The National Chairman of the PDP’s Caretaker Committee, Ahmed Makarfi, and a host of other PDP leaders met with Mr. Ladoja and other leading
Accord Party members in Ibadan, the Oyo State capital, on Thursday to persuade him to return to the party.
Mr. Ladoja was elected governor of Oyo State on the platform of the PDP in May 2003, but was impeached in January 2006 in a controversial
He defected to the Accord Party prior to the 2011 election where he contested the governorship election on the platform of the party but lost. He also contested the governorship in 2015.
At a meeting attended by PDP leaders in the south west and leaders of the Accord Party, Mr. Makarfi urged Mr. Ladoja to return to the party to join forces with him and others to “rescue” the country.
Those who attended the meeting include Gbenga Daniel, former Ogun governor and chairman, South-West reconciliation committee; Jerry Gana; former minister, Jumoke Akinjide, former Deputy Senate Leader and PDP national organising secretary, Abdul Ningi, PDP South-West chairman, Eddy Olafeso; PDP South-West secretary, Bunmi Jenyo; PDP South-West Legal Adviser, Ojo Williams; Accord Party National secretary, Nureni Adisa; Chairman, Accord party, Osun State, Segun Ayodele Fanibe; Publicity Secretary, Accord Party, Osun state, Tunde
Dawood-Akerele, among others.
“Presently, Nigeria is at a crossroads with issues of security, joblessness and instead of going forward we are regressing backward,” Mr. Makarfi said.
“And we believed that a party with a national spread should henceforth be operating and allowing level praying ground which the present leadership of the party stands for.
“We are here to take you back to where you rightly belong. We want you to be with us so we can start together from the Ward, LG to state levels.
“Our national convention is slated for December and we want you to be part of us as one big family,” Mr. Makarfi said.
Mr. Ladoja, who is the national leader of the AP, said it was not his intention and his supporters to leave the PDP initially, but he had to leave because of the lack of fairness in the party.
“It is only in the party that serving governors were arbitrarily removed,” he said.
“Fayose of Ekiti State was removed, my humble self was removed in Oyo State; Chris Ngige of Anambra state was removed in a party that was supposed to protect us.
“When my colleagues Sen. Femi Lanlehin came to me that, Oga, this is the time for you to come in; I said I needed assurances from them.
Because, parties have a way of easing out those they do not want.
“But by your presence here, I know you are here for a serious business and we would communicate our resolution to you soonest.”
Mr. Ladoja explained that the Accord Party started from scratch in Oyo State, but now has eight assembly members, while the PDP has none.
“In 2003, PDP had thirty-one assembly members out of thirty-two. You can see the difference,” said Ladoja.
“In Lagos State where APC is very strong, we have a House of Representatives’ member representing Mushin Federal Constituency in the person of Hon. Kako Are and in the last Local Government election in Lagos State, we won in three wards.”
He added that although the Chairman of the Accord Party in Osun State, Segun Fanibe, attended the meeting, the discussions and the call to move to the PDP did not affect Osun State.
“So our discussion is centred on Oyo State and not Osun state,” Mr. Ladoja added.