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Makinde, Adeleke unite to reposition PDP in South West

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Makinde, Adeleke unite to reposition PDP in South West

What was described as animosity between two brothers, Engineer Seyi Makinde, governor of Oyo State and his counterpart in Osun State, Chief Ademola Adeleke, based on their different political interests in the same party, now appears to have been completely put to rest, as they both agreed to work together to reposition the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the South West.

For almost 20 years, PDP which used to be a strong and vibrant political party in the region, with people of notes, who were strong politicians, has been drifting and almost put in extinction by the All Progressives Congress (APC), still battling vigorously to hold on to power, despite losing out in two states of Oyo and Osun.

Many people believe that the PDP should not be a party to be bedeviled with crisis in the region it once controlled.

But majority of them, rather than staying in the party to build it, left to pursue their personal and selfish interest, especially in their quest to gain power in their States and at the Centre.

The exit of former President Olusegun Obasanjo, whose presidency, strengthened the party, also dealt a big blow on the the PDP.

Since Obasanjo left the party and the demise of Alhaji Adedibu, who used to be a strong rallying point, the centre of the party has never been the same.

Today, people like Gbenga Daniel, Ibikunle Amosun, Ayodele Fayose, and other strong names in the party are now charting a new course in other political parties.

The party was so much torn apart that there is hardly any state in the region that did not suffer one internal crisis or the other, which caused the dwindling fortune of the party.

But as one of the members said, “some of us are very grateful to some leaders, who stood firm to weather the storm.”

He pointed out that the party has been keeping hope alive, since the time Governor Fayose governed Ekiti State, as the only governor in the region and later, Seyi Makinde of Oyo State, and now with Demola Adeleke, which now makes the party to have the control of two states in the South West, “which is a good development for us as a party”

Although initially, before Adeleke became the governor, there had been some misunderstanding over the leadership of the party between former governor Fayose and Seyi Makinde and it was believed that the Adeleke group, tilted towards Fayose.

It was this situation, which led to the issue of who became the Chairman of the Party in the region, between Ambassador Taufeek Arapaja , Makinde’s candidate and Eddy, Olafeso, backed by Fayose and those in Adeleke’s camp.

It was that election, in which Arapaja won and which was held in Osogbo, that made Fayose bowed to Makinde’s leadership in the South West.

However, the animosity was still on with Adeleke, who eventually became the governor of Osun State.

This also, extended to the general and the presidential elections of which Makinde and Adeleke were in different camps. While Adeleke supported Alhaji Atiku Abubakar of the PDP, Makinde and his allies, in the G5 went for the incumbent President Bola Ahmed Tinubu.

Now, that all that is over and with the mediations of elders and stakeholders, both have now decided to work together to solidify the PDP to bounce back in subsequent elections, using the coming November governorship election in Ondo State, as a test case.

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It is this election that has now placed much responsibilities on the Oyo and Osun governors to work out modalities on how to win the state from the APC, which is already in disarray, occasioned by the illness and subsequent death of Arakunrin Akeredolu. With the PDP now relying on the two governors, they, the leaders and all the stakeholders in the region, have come to the realization that the only way they could achieve their targets is for all of them to close rank, bury their differences, and chart a new course.

This development seems to gladden the hearts of the leaders and members, who have been looking for a way to bring Makinde and Adeleke together. Although this caused some skirmishes along the line, at the end of the day, it was the election of Barrister Kamorudeen Ajisafe, as the National Vice Chairman (South West) of the party, was used to cement the cracks between the two leaders and their supporters.

As things are now, the picture in the party is one of a relationship between two brothers. Makinde it was leant had visited Adeleke in Osun several times, both announced and unannounced.

Adeleke too, had visited Makinde, on several occasions in Oyo, during which he had the privilege to be in a cabinet meeting with Makinde’s Exco, where he addressed them and also during the period he was honoured to commission a road project in Oyo state, along with the host.

Although, both of them have promised to come together and forge ahead along with other leaders and stakeholder, the assignment that is bringing them more together is that of Ondo State.

It was decided by all the leaders, including, former governor, Olusegun Mimiko, Chief Olabode George, former governor of Osun State, Prince Olagunsoye Oyinlola, Alhaji Rahman Owokoniran, the chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Party and former Senate President Adolphus Wabara and others, that both Makinde and Adeleke as the leaders and governors, should work on Ondo state for the coming governorship election.

National Publicity Secretary of the party, Debo Ologunlagba announced the decision of the party to have Makinde, Adeleke and others unite the Ondo PDP. At a crucial meeting in Abuja.
According to him,
“the NWC approved the convening of a special meeting of party leaders, comprising of Governors Seyi Makinde of Oyo State, Ademola Adeleke of Osun State, top party leaders from Ondo State and the NWC to further ensure reconciliation and unity among party stakeholders in the state.”

“He said further that “the NWC urges and emphasises the need for all stakeholders to be consistent in the display of fidelity to the party and work together in the greater interest of the party and the people of Ondo Stat, who are looking up to the PDP to rescue their state from the failed APC administration”

Since this pronouncements were made, Makinde and Adeleke have been seen together, standing on their earlier resolve to ensure that the party includes Ondo State to the PDP fold.

Their realignments have now brought a new lease of hope to the South West PDP, as both would now tackle all issues frontally with their financial muscles to execute any plan to the benefit of the party.

Governor Makinde in his own statement on the assignments bequeathed to him and his colleague, said that they would work to solidify the party and provide necessary leaderships. He said “we have decided to forge ahead and do whatever would strengthen the party, ensure unity”. He argued that he and his brother in Osun State, are on the same page.

Adeleke, on his own, said, “it is true that we are both on the same page and we are ready to foster unity and progress in the South West PDP, as well as the wellbeing of members.

“Both Osun and Oyo are moving forward now, because we are brothers”

The Chairman Board of Trustees of the party Adulphus Wabara, said both Makinde and Adeleke are appreciated for coming together now at a period they are needed most by the party, both in the region and at the Federal level. He said, “I am sure both of you will provide good leaderships because the South West is the citadel of politics in Nigeria and I will urge all leaders and stakeholders to put their differences aside and work with the two leaders to achieve result”.

The Deputy National Chairman (South), Ambassador Taofik Arapaja said that the PDP would come back as a leading political party in the Region.

 

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