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……. Call your Aides to Order
By: Ade Adeleke
An APC chieftain in Ondo state and 2019 South West Coordinator of Buhari/Osinbajo Campaign Organization, Chief Olusola Oke,(SAN), on Monday called on governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu (SAN) to call some of his aides to order over their unrestrained attacks on leaders of the ruling party at state and National levels.
In the last one week, the two SSA to the governor Dr Doyin Odebowale and Kunle Adebayo as well as the ilaje Caretaker Chairman, Otito Atikase had issued statements and granted interview to attack Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, APC National Chairman, Adams Oshiomhole and Olusola Oke himself.
In a Press Statement signed by his Media Aide, Rotimi Ogunleye, the APC chieftain said it is unacceptable that the aides of Akeredolu will continue to throw invectives at the leaders of APC in the state and the national level without any restrain, thereby suggesting that the governor approves of such.
Below is the full text of the Press Statement by Chief Olusola One:
MR GOVERNOR, CALL YOUR MEN TO ORDER
The attention of Chief Olusola Oke, SAN, has been brought to the interview granted by Kunle Adebayo, the Special Adviser to Barrister Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, SAN, governor of Ondo state, in the Sunday Tribune edition of May 5th, 2019.
This particular interview, apart from the trend of noticeable innuendos and name-calling by the people in the government arm of the state chapter of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the immediate past, has stretched our silence to its limit.
The deliberate silence of Chief Oke all this while is premised on the need for peace in the party. Moreover, being an experienced party administrator, Chief Oke understands the irredeemable havoc that internal bickering, gossips and power conflict can wreck on a political party, especially anyone in power.
The writer of the syndicated interview made a futile attempt at burying the ghost of the 2016 primary election and also tinkering with the idea of trivializing the unfruitful stint some APC leaders had in the Action Alliance (AA) in the last election. We would have ignored Kunle Adebayo but for the need to protect the truth from the wicked shield of his narratives.
For the records, Chief Oke and other aspirants protested the outcome of the 2016 gubernatorial primary election of the APC, which the aide of Governor Akeredolu refers to in the interview, on the ground that it was fraught with frauds.
The grounds as contained in the petitions of all the aspirants that challenged the outcome are:
1. That the process of accreditation of delegates was not credible
2. That the delegates list was doctored and corrupted
3. That 300 delegate tags were issued fraudulently in line with the doctored delegate list.
The National Appeal Panel upheld the above three grounds. Going further, because there was no any argument or probate evidence from the organizers of the nomination exercise strong enough to vitiate the grounds, the majority of the National Working Committee members of the APC (6 against 5 of the members) approved that the primary election be cancelled.
Instead of justice, our protest was met with more unfairness and injustice. At the end, the minority overruled the majority. We lack the tolerance for that level of injustice where 5 was greater than 6, hence the resolve of Chief Oke and his supporters to exit the APC for the Alliance for Democracy (AD) voluntarily. He and his supporters did not stay in the party to throw dirts and undermine its effort.
Just as the people have thought that the story of AD has become a part of history, the aides of the governor, in an attempt to defend the foray into the Action Alliance by those that are aggrieved, has unearthed the hitherto dead story. They have since resorted to making the case of Chief Oke’s defection to AD as a potent defense for the AA adventure.
It should be noted here that referring to the movement of Chief Oke and his supporters across the state to the AD and using same as a celebrated basis for shifting the body of blame at this time defeats their claims to courage.
This denial can only show lack of determination and attempt to evade responsibility. There is no perfect human anywhere. What defines us is our ability to accept responsibility for our actions and seek redress whenever we have gone wrong.
The above history notwithstanding, Chief Oke after a broad-based reconciliation meeting brokered by Chief Odige Oyegun, the immediate past National Chairman of APC, and other reputable national leaders, has since returned to the APC fold with others that left the party.
Since his return, Chief Oke has maintained an unhidden conciliatory posture. He has avoided being part of the budding conflict among the groups and tendencies in the state chapter despite open intimidation, stigmatisation and attempt to clamp down on him and the crowd of supporters that came with him to the APC by the leaders of the party and government in the state.
This is not uncommon with his experience as a good party administrator and understanding of the infertile game played by boys who seek relevance and patronage at the corridor of power.
While Kunle Adebayo in his narratives attempted to heap a mountain of blames on the National Leaders of APC, he has quickly forgotten how the last congress of the party in Ondo state was subverted and party positions cornered by only a group within the state chapter from the state to the unit level.
Hon D I Kekemeke, Senator Ajayi Borrofice, His Excellency, Alhaji Ali Olanusi, Dr Segun Abraham, Hon Dele Baderinwa, Hon Afe Olowokere and other prominent party leaders in the state including Chief Olusola Oke were schemed out.
Despite all of these, in agreement with other leaders of the party, Chief Oke has met with the leadership of APC, both at the state and national levels, appealing that a broad-based platform be created for assimilation and unity of purpose. This the party leadership has paid little or no attention to, especially in Ondo state.
While it is not our wish to join issues with anybody despite their innuendoes and inanities, we take exemptions to the recent attempt to use our defection to the AD to justify the Action Alliance (AA) misadventure.
As a politician of modest grassroots appeal, Chief Oke has contested elections in the state and he does not need to be prodded by anybody before taking political decisions. He only needs to have lateral consultations across board before making any political move.
The attempt to vent their anger on Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, a respected leader of the APC, through indecorous interviews and press statements by the aides of governor Akeredolu, is unbecoming of a party man who has benefited from the government of the party that Asiwaju and other prominent leaders of APC labored so hard to put in place.
Chief Oke is of the firm opinion that as APC members of the southwest extraction, party elders, especially the one that has made huge sacrifices capable of making the platform of APC to endure and the national chairman of our great party, deserve respect and honor at all times.
The fact of what led some “aggrieved” persons to AA is in the public glare. Its effect ravaged the party from the northern senatorial district to the southern senatorial district. No amount of flowery narratives can blur the image of its devastating effect from the memory of Senator Yele Omogunwa, Senator Ajayi Boroffice, Hon Mayowa Akinfolarin, Hon Bunmi Tunji Ojo, Hon Adeogun, all who were the APC candidates in the last National Assembly elections. Nothing kills a party more than the monster of anti-party.
Chief Oke believes that we can rise above this level of blame trade by accepting the reality of our situation, offer a remorseful apology to the appropriate quarters just like the party and the government did before the State House of Assembly elections, and our party will be great again.
Lastly, it is unacceptable that the aides of governor Akeredolu will continue to throw invectives at the leaders of APC in the state and the national level without any restrain. That it has attained a usual trend suggests that the governor approves of their invectives otherwise, the governor should call his aide to order.
Media Aide to Chief Olusola Oke, SAN