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We want to let Gov Adeleke know governance isn’t a tea party – Kola Olabisi, Osun APC spokesman

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We want to let Gov Adeleke know governance isn't a tea party - Kola Olabisi, Osun APC spokesman

Chief Kola Olabisi is the Director of Media and Publicity of the All Progressives Congress (PAC), in Osun State. In this interview with Olusesan Laoye, he bares his mind on what he described as the perceived crisis in Osun APC, the style of governance of Senator Ademola Adeleke and the past and present roles of the former governor and former Minister of Interior, Ogbeni Rauf Adesola Aregbesola to sabotage the efforts of the APC.

 

Excerpts..

Osun State appears to be charged politically ahead of 2026 governorship election, what are your views about the present political situations in the state, as it affects both the opposition and the ruling party?

While the ruling party, I mean the Peoples Democratic party (PDP) is in charge of the administration of the State, the oppositions too, especially, the major one, which is the All Progressives Congress (APC), has been alive with its responsibility and not relenting in its roles as a formidable opposition.

We in the APC have been fulfilling our roles with honesty of purpose, while the people of the state have been admiring our roles as an opposition party, which has never been bias in our criticism about the way the government is being administered.

We have, as well, not been found wanting and we have been putting the government in power on its toes, in a way, which has been helping them as well.

You see, we in APC have been in strong opposition and making the government of Senator Ademola Adeleke to know that we are around, fully on ground and that we are noticing that his government has deviated from the concept of governance.

Everything to us have been in shambles because in the history of Osun State, this is the first administration that will be operating without holding the weekly state executive council meetings, where the commissioners, special advisers and other top government functionaries, would all sit to discuss the affairs of the state, to known what to be done collectively as a team.

I will also want to say that the only Exco meeting, which we knew about that was held, was at the instance of the opposition because of the pressures put on them, that the governor can’t be running a one man show and that the administration of the state, can’t be run as a family business. We believed that it was our criticism, that compelled them to hold that only exco meeting that we and the people of Osun State are aware of.

To our understanding, Gov. Ademola Adeleke has been running the affairs of the state by proxy. There has been this allegations that his siblings and some of his political associates have been running the government on his behalf because, from what we are aware of, he has not been stable and on ground all the time, to concentrate on the affairs of the State, as he is either in Abuja, Lagos or outside the country.

To us in the APC, we believed that he is only interested in the glamour of office rather than what he has to offer. With this observations, the APC as the major opposition party, is always making sure that we punch them to let them know that governance is not a tea party but a very serious affair and strong responsibility to the people, who are yearning for good governance, which Osun State is known for.

The issue of the crisis in APC of Osun State appears to be going on without being resolved, don’t you think it will affect the party again in the 2026 governorship election?

Let me say it loud and clear that as far as we are concerned, there is no crisis in the APC that I am aware of. If there is any at all, I will know, except you are referring to the APC in another clime.

We want to let Gov Adeleke know governance isn't a tea party - Kola Olabisi, Osun APC spokesman

Kola Olabisi

The APC, which I am a member in Osun State, is one under the chairmanship of Sooko Tajudeen Lawal and the leadership of the immediate past governor, Alhaji Adegboyega Oyetola, who is now the Minister of Marine and Blue Economy. To us, the party is intact, because the party secretariat here has been full of political activities and there has always been political meetings in all the local governments of the state. As far as we are concerned, the APC is one indivisible political party in Osun State.

If you say there is no crisis in Osun State APC, how would you now describe what is happening in the party with the Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola’s group and your group tagged as the main stream?

You are talking about the Rauf Aregbesola’s group which to us has left the party since 2022.

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But they are still well known to be astute members of the party all over, even in the state, so what is happening?

Well, let me lay the foundation of their exits from the party. You see, when you claim to be a member of a political party you have to participate in all the activities of the party, which they have not been doing. Again, during the last governorship election, they never took party and they were not with the party and they never took part in the campaigns or supported any candidate of the party. Specifically, in the State Assembly election, the National Assembly elections, the governorship election and even the presidential elections. Aregesolaa and his team has not been participating in the activities of the party, since he became the Minister of interior.

If you claim to be a member of our party, and you are working against the party, then I will like members of the public to fill in the gap. This is a man and his group, who have been frolicking with the known enemies of the party, “PDP”. What they did to the party is still very fresh in the memories of everybody, when they started from Ijebu-Jesa to Iwo, Osogbo, Aiyedade and other parts of the state, making a mockery of our governorship candidate, then, governor Oyetola, singing that “whalahi Isiaka would be thrown out with votes”.

If such a person is a member of our party, he would not go to that extent. If also he respects the party’s supremacy, he should not have been going about to ridicule our candidate. But he disrespected the party in the last series of elections in the state.

It was known that he actively worked for the PDP and some of his key loyalists were rewarded for their activities with the PDP with cabinet positions.

To us in APC, Aregbesola and group, have lost their relevance in the party.

With what you have just said, let us now look at the recent action of Ogbeni Aregbesola with the renovation of the Oranmiyan house in Osogbo. He has replaced the pictures of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu and that of Chief Bisi Akande, the duo, he once held in high esteem, with that of the late sage Chief Obafemi Awolowo and late Chief Bola Ige.

What effect do you think this would have on him and your take on this?

Well, he owns his property and that building, the Oranmiyan house belongs to him and he has the latitude to do what he likes with his property. The development has clearly confirmed what I have been talking about concerning his attitudes against the party and leadership. Whatever the case may be, by doing that, he can’t be pinned to anti party activities because that building is not that of the APC nor its secretariat but his personal property. Again, removing President Tinubu and Chief Akande’s pictures from his property, to us, means nothing. Right now, it is not people in the APC, who are judging his actions but members of the public.

There has been this insinuation that the rift between Ogbeni Aregbesola and President Tinubu is caused by the Minister of Marines and Blue economy, because Aregesola has been a close confidant of Tinubu under whom he served as commissioner for works for eight years in Lagos State.

We want to let Gov Adeleke know governance isn't a tea party - Kola Olabisi, Osun APC spokesman

Kola Olabisi

Let me just say this that people speculate a lot. Well, for clarity, I am not a spokesman for either of the two, I mean President Tinubu and Ogbeni Aregbesola, but there is no doubt about their relationship that they were very close. When you said that Tinubu was instrumental to Aregbesola being the governor of Osun State, I am also aware that he did everything possible to pave the way for him. Even after the election, Tinubu bankrolled the litigations that lasted for 30 months, before Aregbesola eventually became the governor of Osun State.

That much I know but what must have transpired between them to cause what you have observed or the insinuations you talked about, that, I don’t know, since I can’t speak for either President Tinubu or Ogbeni Aregbesola.

How prepared is the party for 2026 or what are we expecting from the party, based on the present situation on ground?

There is no doubt that the APC in Osun State is fully prepared for the governorship election in 2026. To be sincere with you, we are fully on ground now, and ready for any eventuality. The party is waxing very strong every day.

An indication to this, was the latest defections of Alhaji Shuab Oyedokun, one of the pillars of the PDP in Nigeria and Osun State as well, to the APC. Alhaji Oyedokun is not a small man in the political history of Nigeria. He is one of the founding members of PDP in Nigeria and up till the time of his moving to the APC, with thousands of his followers, he was a member of the Board of Trustees (BOT), of the PDP.

Not him alone, another strong man of the party and former governorship aspirant in the last election, in person of Prince Dotun Babayemi, joined the APC with thousands of his followers.

Their defections to us and many others in the state, was strange because if such a people from the ruling party have decided to join the opposition, then it’s a big plus for us and an indication that the APC is a strong and highly dependable party to attract such personalities into its fold.

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Even as I speak, people from other political parties are decamping to the APC across the local governments of the state, on daily basis.

Nigeria presently is in a precarious situation and people are seriously feeling the pains. What in your own opinion and what do you think led the country into this mess?

Honestly, there is nothing untoward that is happening in Nigeria. It is because we have a capable hand at the helms of affairs, in person of President Bola Tinubu, who is the Chief driver of the nation. He is a man well prepared for governance and he had already said before now, that things would be difficult.

What is happening now is that Nigeria is going through a very serious reforms, which honestly would be painful initially and, which would at the end of the day, be beneficial to us as a nation and as individuals. I believe that things would still be rosy and I will appeal to Nigerians to exercise patience with President Tinubu.

It is just a year now that President Tinubu has come to power but instead of things getting better they are becoming worse every day with high cost of food and essential commodities skyrocketing. What efforts do you think should be applied to stem the tide of inflation on daily basis?

Yes, there are some unpatriotic Nigerians, who are deliberately profiteering and taking the advantage of the situation in the country to enrich themselves at the expense of the common people. To portray President Tinubu as not capable of running the affairs of the country.To me, this people are criminals who should be dealt with.

However, I want to say that what Nigerians are going through now, would not last for long. Even President Tinubu has assured the Nigerians that there is going to be light at the end of the tunnel and that we shall soon reach our Eldorado. I think it is better that these commodities are even available but expensive, than not being available at all.

If they are not available to buy, then by now things would have been different in Nigeria and more chaotic. Like I said earlier, we need to be patient and with time, things would normalize and I strongly believe in that.

Again i am sure that government is working hard to ensure that the people are happy and I can say that those, who have been sabotaging the efforts and the good intention of government would soon meet their Waterloo.

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