NWC Blames Omisore For Osun SDP’s Internal Crisis

By Shina Abubakar

  • Approves New Dates For Congresses

As the crisis rocking the Osun State Chapter of the Social Democratic Party (SDP) is yet to settle, the Chief Ademola Ishola-led executive has urged the public to disregard any state congress organized on Saturday, July 7, 2018, saying it is an exercise in futility. 

According to a statement signed by the party’s Chairman and Secretary in the state, Chief Ademola Ishola, and Elder Femi Awe, the said Congress was illegal.

The party leaders insisted that any congress being organized in the name of SDP is an affront to the judiciary based on the order of the court stopping the exercise pending the determination of a suit filed by some aggrieved members of the party.

They disclosed that while efforts were being made to resolve the court matter, the SDP National Working Committee in its meeting of Wednesday, July 4, 2018 in Abuja had set aside the last two congresses organized by Iyiola Omisore’s group.

Besides, they revealed that the NWC has approved new dates for congresses while new and authentic registers and congress forms have been released to the party executives in the state for fresh congresses.

The new dates, in a statement by the party’s National Organising Secretary, Rt. Hon. Emeka Atuma are: July 14th (Ward Congress), July 21st (Local Government Congress) and July 28th (State Congress) “and we advised all our members to go to their various wards to register as authentic members of the SDP”.

“It is sad to note that just one of the three aspirants contesting the governorship election under the platform of the SDP wanted to take the party by the throat and secure our party’s ticket through fraudulent means.

“Let it be known that Senator Iyiola Omisore’s plan was to install one of his cronies, Dr. Bayo Faforiji, the erstwhile factional Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) as the Chairman of SDP through a fake congress not known to the party’s national echelons.

“Going by the lists of his so called executive at the ward and local government levels, it was clear that he only appointed aggrieved members of his group who left the PDP with him in May this year.

“The world must know that before the arrival of Omisore and his group from the PDP to the SDP, we have lived together as a united and a peaceful family.  But, since his coming into the SDP, we have witnessed serious violence against our members by his supporters with several cases now being handled at several police stations across the state”, the statement added.

It would be recalled that, the National Chairman of the party, Chief Olu Falae cautioned Omisore over the ongoing crisis lingering in the party in Osun.

Chief Falae who spoke in Abuja during a press interview held at the SDP National Secretariat said, “it is disheartened that Omisore is struggling to hijack the party from those who are in the party before him, because these people have been in the party before Omisore seeks asylum in the SDP.”

He then implored the embattled governorship aspirant to move round the state to canvass for support from leaders, members and delegates of the party.

He then concluded that the National Executive, Board of Trustees (BOT) and Leaders of the party at National level will not accept such an unlawful congress from any quarter.

 

Sealed! Omisore To Contest Under SDP

By Kazeem Mohammed

It seems that the door for reconciliation in the Osun chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has finally been shut, as it has now been concluded and sealed that the former deputy governor of the State of Osun, Senator Iyiola Omisore would prosecute his governorship ambition under the platform of the Social Democratic Party (SDP).

The embattled Chairman of the Omisore faction of the PDP, Dr Bayo Faforiji confirmed this during a telephone conversation with OSUN DEFENDER Newspaper on Wednesday.

Upon enquiry, Faforiji said, “Yes, it is true, we are moving to the SDP and that is the platform Senator Omisore will use to prosecute his governorship ambition come September 22. We will contest on that platform.

On whether Omisore is a sellable candidate in the state, he said, it is only the people of the state that can decide that, saying Omisore is a household name in the state and well rooted politically at the grassroot.

According to him, even if the SDP does not have the structure on ground before now, Omisore’s name, as a grassroot politician and his followers across all the polling units, wards and local governments would take care of the situation by using their political mobilization  strategy and structures already on ground.

“We have the structures to prosecute the ambition. Go to any unit and ward in this state and ask for Omisore followers who were formally in PDP and that will answer the question of structure.

“If the SDP does not have structure on ground, we, that are going there have the structure in every unit, every ward and every local government.

“Whether Omisore is sellable to the people of Osun or not, let the electorate decide that. The 250,000 votes that we got in the 2014 governorship election, were they not members of the electorate, are they not there again?

“Whoever is saying that he is not sellable, let them pick their own candidate and let the people decide. By the grace of God, we are convinced that Senator Omisore will emerge as the governor of Osun”.

Faforiji said that there will be formal declaration for the SDP soon, saying, “may be by next week or I should just say before the end of the month”.

It would be recalled that the insistence of the former deputy governor to contest for the governorship seat again has tore his former party, PDP apart, as a faction of the party which claimed to have the majority insisted that he is not a sellable candidate.

Recently the followers of Omisore tore the party flag of the PDP at the factional secretariat of the party at Ogo-Oluwa, a situation that triggered rumour that he has pitched his tent with the Accord Party.

Some former political office holders in the state, who are members of the PDP had subsequently berated Omisore for the action, demanding that he must be punished for his misdeeds.

They said that with or without Omisore, the PDP would produce the next governor of the state.

Reacting on the rumour of defection or suspension of Senator Omisore from the party, the state PDP Chairman, Honourable Soji Adagunodo said: “As I speak, Otunba Iyiola Omisore is one of our revered leaders and the party is in the process of reconciliation.

“We cannot be thinking of reconciliation and at the same time thinking of suspension of some people. We hope he reasons along with the leadership and join hands with us to move the party forward.”

 

Osun Speaker Dissociates APC From Omisore’s Imbroglio

By Israel Afolabi

Speaker, Osun State House of Assembly, Hon. Najeem Salaam has said that it is insolent to insinuate that Senator Iyiola Omisore is being used by the All Progressives Congress (APC) government to destabilise the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

According to a statement by his Press Secretary, Goke Butika on Wednesday, Salaam said Omisore is matured enough in politics to decide what is good for him.

Salaam, while interacting with journalists at the maiden memorial lecture in honour of late Ademola Ojo, a retired broadcaster from Osun State Broadcasting Corporation (OSBC), said it was a conspiracy theory fabricated to bring the governing APC into Omisore’s battle in the PDP, asserting that the Ife born politician has not indicated that he is leaving his party for APC.

He said, “With due respect to Senator Omisore, he is a matured politician and he has been around for a long time in the business of politics. So, if he is interested in crossing over to the APC, he can do it without being induced or prompted and as a Nigerian, he enjoys freedom of association as enshrined in the constitution; if he is so desired to join APC, he could be welcomed as long as he is qualified to be a member, but up till now, he has not informed anyone that he has left PDP.”

In his lecture titled: “We are all victims of occupational hazard”, Salaam observed that the society has not done enough to encourage safety rules in all places of work across board, saying that the rot began with politics and the situation could change for better if retired journalists partake in politics with aim of unleashing their experiences for better society.

“I used to know that journalists and lawyers dominated political landscape in the glorious past, but the departure of journalists, especially the retired ones now from politics  has diminished the political engagement and I asked all our Veteran journalists to join politics not as bystanders but as gladiators so that their wealth of experience could be brought to bear in the development of our society and evolution of new thinking, it would be a plus if they can transmute from veteran journalists to political strategists”, Salaam asserted.

The Speaker further tasked Nigeria Union of Journalist (NUJ) to apply strict regulatory exercise into the recruitment of journalists, saying, failure to do that would make journalism all comers’ affairs, noting that  free entry into the profession may compromise “believability” which he described as unique selling proportion.

 

EDITORIAL: Will Omisore Ever Apologise?

Nothing better illustrates the pathetic base politics of Osun PDP than the fatuous claim by Senator Iyiola Omisore that the United Nations Educational and Scientific Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) gave Osun State government over 70 per cent of the amount spent to reconstruct the Olaiya-Ita Olokan Road – the road that leads to the sacred Osun Groove. In an apparent bid to disprove the statement made by the governor, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola, while inaugurating the 2.8 kilometre road on Tuesday, March 6, said that the state got the money to construct the road from the Omoluabi Infrastructure Conservation Fund with the approval of the state House of Assembly, he claimed that the global body largely provided the funds.

His words: “It is an open secret and matter in the domain of the public that the Osun State government had assessed counterpart funds from UNESCO, which is in excess of over 70 per cent following the designation of the Osun Osogbo Groove by the world body as one of the World Heritage sites for local and international tourists.

“This is not new and practical efforts, which climaxed in the attraction of such funds to Osun, began during the regime of the Peoples Democratic Party. But, it is a statement of fact that Aregbesola received counterpart funds from UNESCO”.

Coming from an individual, albeit a serial loser, who once aspired to govern the State of Osun, such fiction in the name of politicking obviously takes him and his party to a new low. The truth however is that UNESCO provided no such funds to the state government. UNESCO in a statement issued by its Communication Consultant (Regional Office) Olusola Macaulay was emphatic: “UNESCO did not contribute any fund to the construction of the road that leads to Osun Grove. And there was no time the Osun State government or its agencies approached UNESCO to support the project or contribute anything to it. We didn’t pay 70 per cent or any other fraction to the project, as being peddled. As I speak to you, we have no project we are undertaking in Osun State.”

It is bad enough that Omisore will drag the respectable international body into his kind of politics. Sadder still is that UNESCO’s swift rebuttal of the barefaced lie has changed nothing as far as Omisore and his PDP are concerned. No apologies to the Rauf Aregbesola administration that he so callously maligned; none to the good people of Osun that he irresponsibly tried to mislead; and certainly no word of contrition for the lies spewed forth about the global body. Rather, he has since moved on ostensibly convinced that lies, big or small, do not matter.

Well, Osun people have a rare chance to prove that true-telling does matter. It is in fact the hallmarks of an Omoluabi. Now, they know better than to entrust their destinies to the hands of those who choose to call darkness light; characters who put out falsehood as truth. Time to get ready for the soulless fellows as they will soon come begging for their votes. Time to show them the true masters.

PDP Governorship Aspirant, Omisore Swims In Troubled Waters Over Assault On Late Senator Adeleke

The State of Osun Police Command has invited Peoples Democratic Party’s (PDP) governorship aspirant‎ in the state Mr Iyiola Omisore, to respond to allegations of physical assault brought against him by the recently deceased Mr Isiaka Adeleke, a senator and member of the All Progressives Congress (APC).

 

The invitation was made via a letter dated 20th October. Signed by Mr Umege Uzochukwu, Deputy Commissioner of Police (DCP) in charge of the State Criminal Intelligence and Investigation Department, the letter requested Mr Omisore to meet with the DCP on 27 October.

 

The physical attack took place in April 2014 and was reported to the Police by Mr Adeleke the same year, while he was a member of the PDP and a rival to Mr Omisore for the party’s governorship ticket. Mr Adeleke had said that the attack took place during a PDP stakeholders’ meeting at Ideal Nest Hotel, Oshogbo, capital of Osun State. The deceased senator had claimed that he was set upon by Messrs. Omisore, Jelili Adesiyan, then Minister for Police Affairs; and one Mr Sogo Agboola, a PDP stalwart.

 

 

Osun PDP Leadership Crisis Worsen

By Shina Abubakar

The seeming leadership crisis in the State of Osun chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has taken a new dimension, as the party’s chance of achieving peaceful resolution seems impossible, just as the sacked Ali Modu Sheriff faction is hell-bent on holding on to leadership structure in the state.

The recent pronouncement of the Supreme Court on the legal status of the National leadership of the party was expected to put to rest, all issues regarding the crises confronting the opposition party, but the situation further deteriorated in some of the states where Sheriff’s faction hold sway, especially in the SouthWest.

Prior to the court’s pronouncement, the Osun situation was a bit different as the Soji Adagunodo faction has the majority of members of the party which is made up of the young generation of party followers while the Bayo Faforiji faction was in the minority and only enjoyed the support of Senator Iyiola Omisore before the judgment gave them acceptability.

It would be recalled that the Osun PDP crisis was not without the ambition of Senator Omisore to be the Governor of the state while the young breed and some elders in the party strictly opposed, giving room for division in the party prior to the crisis at the national level.

With the acceptability of Makarfi faction, the National leadership of the party recognised Bayo Faforiji as the party chairman in the state at the detriment of the majority members of the party, who were not favourably disposed to the arrangement.

To persuade the majority faction, a committee was set up to resolve the issue, with a view to maintaining unity in the party, in line with the spirit of the efforts to win the recently concluded Osun West Senatorial bye-election, but the National leadership has always given recognition to Dr. Bayo Faforiji as the chairman.

This situation did not go down well with the Adagunodo faction who believed it has the majority of party members and irrespective of the court judgment should enjoy priority in resolving the party crisis.

However, some of the factors working against the faction is the allegation of receiving N150 million from the Adeleke Family to prosecute the last senatorial bye-election, but a close associate of Adagunodo described the allegation as a figment of the imagination of those spreading it.

Another critical issue the faction is contending with is the role played by the former General Secretary of the party, Professor Wale Oladapo in relegating Senator Iyiola Omisore, as the other faction believed that he would have to pay for it now that the court had sacked him from the post.

But the Adagunodo faction also has strong bargaining power at its disposal, especially as the faction enjoyed the support of many of the young breed of the party and also many of the elders who were against the pseudo dominance of the party and is working towards making statement that the party belongs to the members not an individual.

Another stumbling block on the path of the Faforiji faction is the emergence of Senator Buruji Kashamu and others who rose against the leadership of Governor Ayodele Fayose in the region and would stop at nothing to make sure the arrangement never stand.

OSUN DEFENDER however gathered that the PDP in the state, no matter the compromise may not retain a united house, as a faction in the party is looking forward to move to another party ahead of the 2018 governorship election before it is too late to prepare for campaign.

ONSA Funds: Omisore Refunds N350m To EFCC

A former Deputy Governor of Osun State, Senator Iyiola Omisore, has now paid back N350million of the N1.7billion public funds which the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission ( EFCC) traced to him.
Omisore first paid N300million and another N50million to the EFCC yesterday.
A top-level source in the EFCC confirmed the development, saying: ”We hope he will pay up the balance as soon as possible.”
“We are determined to retrieve all slush funds for the nation’s use,” the source added.
About N4.685billon was transferred by the Office of National Security Adviser (ONSA) to Sylva McNamara Limited, a company linked to a former Minister of State for Defence, Mr. Musiliu Obanikoro.
Of the sum, about N3.880billion was allegedly given to Governor Ayodele Fayose and Senator Omisore through cash and bank transfers by Obanikoro.
Omisore’s share was said to be about N1.7billion.
The former Deputy Governor gave the list of companies which benefited from the N1.7billion that was released by the NSA to him.
According to a report by the EFCC, some of the funds were remitted as follows: Fimex Gilt Limited (N160m)-8/8/2014in UBA; Metropolitan Consortium (N350m)—9/7/14 in First Bank; Sawanara (N300m)—1/8/14 in First Bank and Metropolitan Consortium (N350m)-1/8/14 in First Bank.
Meanwhile, there were indications yesterday that the Acting Chairman of the EFCC, Mr. Ibrahim Magu, has approved the release of a former Minister of State for Defence, Sen. Musiliu Obanikoro, and Dr. Reuben Abati who was a former Special Adviser on Media and Publicity to ex-President Goodluck Jonathan from custody.
While Obanikoro refunded N100.4million to the EFCC with an undertaking for the return of about N480million, Abati was granted bail to go and source for the N50million allocated to him by the Office of National Security Adviser( ONSA).
A top source said: “Having substantially met his bail conditions, the EFCC has released Obanikoro from custody. Apart from refunding N100million, he also pledged to pay back about N480million.
“Regarding Abati, the EFCC released him on bail to source for the N50million credited to him by ONSA.”

[The Nation]

Failed Osun PDP Guber Aspirant, Omisore, Arrested By EFCC

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission has arrested a former Deputy Governor of Osun State, Senator Iyiola Omisore, who was declared wanted about a month ago.

It was learnt that Omisore was arrested at his Abuja home located at 1 Kainji Crescent, Off Lake Chad Street, Maitama, by a team of EFCC operatives on Sunday morning.

“Upon a thorough search of his apartment, we recovered N1m and $21,000 in cash from him,” a source said.

It was learnt that the suspect was apprehended as part of investigations into the N4.7bn that was siphoned from the imprest account of the Office of the National Security Adviser and allegedly handled by the then Minister of State for Defence, Senator Musiliu Obanikoro, and his two sons, Babajide and Gbolahan, in 2014.

The commission had alleged that Omisore received about N1.31bn from the money during the build-up to the August 9, 2014, governorship election in Osun State in which Omisore was the governorship candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party.

Omisore had, however, denied the allegations and even sued the EFCC for N10bn, accusing the anti-graft agency of defamation.

The PUNCH had reported last week that the anti-graft agency traced N1.310bn to company accounts allegedly belonging to Omisore.

Omisore was said to have received the money from the Diamond Bank account of Sylvan McNamara, a company in which Obanikoro’s sons are said to be signatories to its bank account.

The ex-deputy governor allegedly received the funds in four tranches from Sylvan McNamara between July and August 2014, a few weeks before the Osun State governorship election which he lost to incumbent Rauf Aregbesola of the All Progressives Congress.

A document detailing the transaction showed that the money was paid into three company accounts allegedly belonging to Omisore.

A detective in the anti-graft agency explained, “On July 9, 2014, N150m was paid into the bank account of Sawanara at First Bank. On August 1, 2014, N300m was paid into Sawanara Limited.

“On August 8, 2014, about N160m was paid into the bank account of Fimex Gilt Limited domiciled at UBA. On the day of the election, August 9, 2014, N350m was paid into the First Bank account of Metropolitan Consortium.”

The former deputy governor had also sued the EFCC for N10bn and prayed a Federal High Court in Abuja to grant him an order of perpetual injunction restraining the “defendants (EFCC) either by themselves, their agents, officers, servants, privies or otherwise however called from making such or similar defamatory publication of and concerning the plaintiff (Omisore) to any person or persons.”

All the bank accounts traced to Omisore have since been frozen by the EFCC.

Meanwhile, the spokesperson for the PDP in Osun State, Mr. Diran Odeyemi, described the arrest of Omisore by the EFCC as a violation of court order, which restrained the agency from arresting the former deputy governor of the state.

Odeyemi, who is also a close ally of Omisore, said this in an interview with one of our correspondents in Osogbo on Sunday following the arrest.

He said, “It is true that the EFCC invaded Otunba’s house in Abuja today and arrested him. This is a gross violation of the order of the court on this matter.

“There is a subsisting court order, restraining the EFCC from arresting him. They ought to have vacated the order before arresting him.”

EFCC Declares Sen. Iyiola Omisore Wanted

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, today, May 24, 2016, declared a former deputy governor of Osun State, Senator Iyiola Omisore wanted.

The former senator is wanted in connection with a case of receiving and misappropriating the sum of over N700, 000,000.00 from the Office of the National Security Adviser, between June and November, 2014.

The EFCC stated that Iyiola Omisore has been elusive and refused to report to the Commission after invitation was extended to him on April 7, 2016requesting him “to come and make clarification on the ongoing investigation”.

Instead of responding to the Commission’s investigation Omisore had approached the Federal Capital Territory High Court for the enforcement of his fundamental human rights. Justice Husseini Baba Yusuf consequently ordered that Iyiola Omisore should only be arrested through a due and legal process.

The EFCC thereafter obtained a warrant to effect the arrest of the politician.‪

Osun PDP In Disarray As Omisore Ejects Party From Secretariat

A former Deputy Governor of Osun State, Senator Iyiola Omisore, may have sacked a faction of the Peoples Democratic Party in the state from its secretariat situated along Osogbo-Gbongan Road.

Omisore, it was learnt, rented the party secretariat and had been the one paying rent on the property located in the heart of Osogbo, the state capital.

The tactical ejection of the faction of the PDP from the secretariat is a direct fallout of the crisis rocking the party in the state over the congresses to elect leaders of the party from ward level to state level.

While a faction of the party which has majority of the party leaders held a congress which produced Mr. Soji Adagunodo-led executives, the Dr. Bayo Faforiji faction which is enjoying the support of Omisore stayed away from the congress.

Omisore’s faction said they had got an injunction restraining the party from holding the congress.

It was gathered on Monday that the faction moved their belongings from the secretariat to a new place around Otaefun area along Ikirun Road.

A source close to Omisore confirmed the development.

He said, “He (Omisore) rented this secretariat and he is the one paying the rent so there is no way those ones (other faction) can come here with what they have done.

“He did not pursue them but they also know that they can no longer come here. They have moved to Otaefun area. They have gone there to form a faction of PDP. But let us wait and see. We are still going to court tomorrow ( Tuesday).”

The newly elected secretary of the PDP in Osun State, Mr. Bola Ajao, when contacted said the party had moved to a new secretariat along Ikirun Road.

Ajao, however, declined to expatiate on the reason for the sudden rotation of the party secretariat.

Many prominent leaders of the party including a member of the Board of Trustee of the party, Alhaji Shuaib Oyedokun; National Secretary of the PDP, Prof. Wale Oladipo and former Chairman of Federal Road Maintenance Agency, Mr. Jide Adeniji, former Deputy Governor Olusola Obada; Senator Olu Alabi and others were present at the congress which produced Adagunodo-led executives.

The congress was supervised by a committee from the national secretariat of the party led by Justice Emmanuel Dodo (retd) and officials of Independent National Electoral Commission.

But Omisore, former Minister of Police Affairs, Jelili Adesiyan; member BoT, Chief Ebenezer Babatope and others shunned the congress.

Ahead Of Ife Re-run Election: PDP Promises Mayhem

…Rivers’ Case‘ ll be Child’s Play – Party Threatens

Weeks before the proposed re-run election to fill the vacant seat of Ife Central State Constituency in the State of Osun House of Assembly, as a result of the demise of the former legislator representing the area, Honourable Oladejo Makinde, who died last December, the main opposition party in the state, Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), has concluded plans to unleash unprecedented mayhem on the electorate, should it lose the election.

OSUN DEFENDER gathered from authoritative sources that series of clandestine meetings have been held in various locations across the state in the past few weeks since the independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) set the date for the re-run election.

One of the sources had confided in the medium that most of the meetings were held at the numerous  houses owned by the defeated gubernatorial candidate of the party in the August 14th, 2014 election, Senator Iyiola Omisore, in the state scattered across the ancient town.

At the meetings, several issues reportedly came up for discussion; all tailored on the way to ensure victory for the PDP at whatever cost, as members saw the election as the last saving grace for the party, if it truly determines to stay relevant in the state.

“Our members see the coming re-run election in Ife Central Constituency as a do-or-die affair, as it remains the last stroke that will determine the fate of the party in the state. The election will also determine whether the party will stay afloat of go permanently into oblivion,” the source stressed.

To give teeth to the plan, a major stakeholder and financier of the party, whose penchant for violence is legendary has been gathered to have promised to supply logistics to ensure victory for the party at all cost starting with the provision of some vehicles to ensure smooth operation and mobility for those saddled with one responsibility or the other.

This same financier has also taken it upon himself to use his wide range connection in the police hierarchy to ensure hitch-free operations of the members of the party in the course of carrying out their various assignments. Feelers from the various meetings held mostly in the night have also revealed how a senior security officer, who was called on phone during one of the meetings, professed his allegiance and loyalty to the party, while promising to do all within his power to ensure victory for the party and assist in unleashing mayhem on prominent members of the ruling party in the state, the All Progressives Congress (APC), in the area.

The officer was gathered to have promised a replica of what happened in Rivers State on APC members in the area in particular and the state in general should the need arise.

The grand plan, according to the party source, is to make the state ungovernable for the APC-led administration of Governor Rauf Aregbesola as a prelude to the declaration of a state of emergency by the Federal Government.

“What happened in Rivers State would be a child’s play to what we have in store for Aregbesola and his   party in Osun. We are going to use all available resources at our disposal to ensure the state becomes ungovernable for them. It will be a battle to finish,” he threatened.