BY ABIODUN AKANJI
“Should we be rewriting history just to make people feel good? That’s not history, that’s psychiatry.” Ed Koch
IT is necessary to bring to record for the sake of clarity and future reference, the blow by blow account of the return of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the State of Osun, back to the opposition under the failed leadership of Prince Gboyega Famodun, after 12 glorious years as the ruling party.
The tragic loss of our dear party on 16th July governorship election is no doubt the worst calamity that befell the party in the recent times, a situation that dumped all good party leaders, men, women and youths in mourning mood. It is the worst chapter in the history of the progressives in Osun and a very painful development that will take a long time to overcome.
Since the unfortunate incident, there has been different accounts and shameless attempts by various individuals to rewrite the history of series of events that brought the downfall of APC in the election, especially from the attention-seeking media handlers and those political scavengers around Prince Famodun, who from their various narrations have exposed their very low-level thinking wrapped with ignorance of the facts and hatred for the truth. Through these characters, one can easily understand why and how a ruling party conveniently somersaulted into opposition through Famodun’s leadership without focus.
Every reasonable mind will still remember clearly, how the party had a very narrow escape during the 2018 governorship election, a situation that was later twisted and attributed to several factors by some political nitwits’ handlers of Gov. Oyetola in conjunction with visionless leadership of Famodun.
According to them, the narrow escape was caused by decline in Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola’s popularity, some bad policies of his administration, people’s near rejection of APC, the half salary issue, among others. None of the nitwits was reasonable enough to think about the wrong political manipulation that produced the worst product for the party to sell in the person of Gov. Oyetola and how people felt aggrieved with his emergence, because their emotions and loyalty were taken for granted. The “unsellable” nature of the candidate himself and the decision to force him down the throat of the party members as the candidate of the party against a popular agitation for the “West Agenda” then was an everlasting error. The rest is history.
Oyetola’s candidacy was a very wrong decision which caused a very deep crack in the party structure and shook the unity of the party to its root across Osun. Majority of his colleagues in the state executives council were not happy with the decision, the State House of Assembly was sharply divided, the party structure at the state, local government, wards to units level was cracked and factionalised so much that the state executive of the party broke into two and a side suspended Prince Famodun as the State Chairman.
The unfortunate situation in the party forced some of the gladiators who were also aspirants together with their supporters, to leave the party in annoyance while others who believe in party supremacy and leadership trust stayed back. There was total breakdown of orderliness in Osun APC house because of Gboyega Oyetola’s imposition.
Repackaging Oyetola: A Difficult Task
In order to ensure that the party retains its ruling status beyond 2018, all the APC political warlords were sent back to their various areas of control and influence with the near impossible task to repackage and win for Oyetola. One person who deserved to be pitied most was the then Speaker of the State Assembly, Rt.Hon. Najeem Salaam who was to handle Osun West for the party and to make the people understand why Oyetola was better than him to have emerged as the candidate and why his own people should join hands with him to vote Oyetola as the Governor. Sadly, Najeem Salaam was the first victim of Oyetola’s deadly hidden motive after he won the election, as many unsuccessful attempts were made to castrate Najeem Salaam politically with different moves by Oyetola then.
Against all odds, mission accomplished and victory delivered. Oyetola became the Governor and the journey back to opposition commenced immediately for Osun APC. During this period, Famodun was comfortably sleeping as if all is well with the party.
What a tragedy?
To be continued…
- Abiodun Akanji writes from Iragbiji.