Some aggrieved members of the All Progressives Congress, APC, in Oyo State have accused the state executives of the party ofnot being supportive of the efforts of the national National leadership of the party to resolve the internal crisis facing the party in the state.
The aggrieved members,who are mainly aspirants who paid for and collected expression of interest/nomination forms to secure tickets of the party in the build-up to the 2019 general elections, in a letter dated 6th of March 2020 to the secretary of the APC national reconciliation committee in Abuja expressed their grievances and complaints against the leadership of the party in the State.
Top on the long list of grievances in the letter is the fact that members were made to pay for forms, fortify structures and mobilize delegates for a primary election that “was cancelled with utmost impunity without any explanation or compensation.”
In the letter, a copy of which was obtained by OYOINSIGHT.COM, they explained “That we kept faith in the party winning the election in the state and went all out towards achieving victory, but this same deceitful leadership crashed all hopes – our party lost this strategic state in the South-West to the opposition!, hence, despair, distrust, divisiveness, disunity, anger, name-calling, abuses set in, and our party in Oyo State is in a terrible state now, if truth must be told.
“That, in fact, the negative indices started manifesting in the second term of the immediate past Governor of the state; when long-time, committed, real progressive members/leaders were pushed aside.
“Resulting into crisis-laden congresses of 2018, characterized by imposition of candidates from Ward, LGS, and to the state levels. The crisis led to a large chunk of the party membership moving away, with no attempt at wooing them back. It is still all about Confrontation! Confrontation!! Confrontation!!! , judging from the tone of the latest press release from the party EXCO in the State.”
However, the aggrieved individuals urged the reconciliation committee to consider a refund to aspirants because it is the moral thing to do since the primary they paid for did not hold.
They added that,” Public apology by those who unleashed this act of political terror may not be out of place as well.”
The letter which was written after a three-hour long meeting was signed by eight out of the aggrieved party members namely; Comrade Akeem Babalola, Ademola Solalu, Wole Adejumo, Ismail Fagbemi, Lanre Jinadu, Ojo Jimoh, Akin Alli and Dejo Adebisi.
March 6, 2020.
APC National Reconciliation Committee,
No 24, Panama Street, Maitama,
RE: REQUEST FOR MEMORANDA
In response to the above subject, we (aggrieved members) of APC in Oyo State, mainly ASPIRANTSwho paid for and collected expression of interest/nomination forms in the build-up to the 2019 general elections wish to convey our grievances/complaints and “remedy being sought” ( product of a three-hour meeting) as follows:
➢That our members were made to pay for forms, fortified structures/mobilized delegates e.t.c, all in preparation for primaries which never took place, cancelled with utmost impunity without any explanation nor compensation.
➢That as committed and loyal members, we resisted pressure to seek for justice through the courts which would have further discredited and disrupted the whole process with the likelihood of what happened in Zamfara and other states happening in Oyo State.
➢That we kept faith in the party winning the election in the state and went all out towards achieving victory, but this same deceitful leadership crashed all hopes – our party lost this strategic state in the South-West to the opposition!, hence, despair, distrust, divisiveness, disunity, anger, name-calling, abuses set in, and our party in Oyo Stateis in a terrible state now, if truth must be told.
➢That, in fact, the negative indices started manifesting in the second term of the immediate past Governor of the state; when long-time, committed, real progressive members/leaders were pushed aside.
➢Resulting into crisis-laden congresses of 2018, characterized by imposition of candidates from Ward, LGS, and to the state levels. The crisis led to a large chunk of the party membership moving away, with no attempt at wooing them back. It is still all about Confrontation! Confrontation!! Confrontation!!! , judging from the tone of the latest press release from the party EXCO in the State.
➢That this same culture of imposition/arrogance & impunity engulfed the “candidates” who “emerged” at various levels, refusing to make-up with other aspirants to collectively fight the electoral battle. The result is lack-luster commitment of other aspirants to the party’s victory during the polls under reference.
➢That one apparent proof of party leadership FAILURE in Oyo Stateis that all key federal and other appointments of party members were secured through power blocks outside of the state.
➢Worse still, this same leadership has refused to accept responsibility for the monumental electoral disgrace suffered by the party in the State, gloating over with “we-are-all-responsible” song! Yet same “Emperor” who superintended over the woeful defeat of our party in Oyo Stateis now, Deputy Chairman (South) of our dear party! What a lethal reward system! A killer virus for our party in the whole of the South?
B. REMEDY BEING SOUGHT:
➢It stands morality on the head to collect money from people for a particular act which did not happen, just like it puts a question mark on integrity to look the other way by refusing a refund of money collected for an act that never took place. Refunding the monies should be considered.
➢The essence of this is to prevent future occurrence, the party would have realized that fees levied and paid for services not rendered will be refunded, hence the needful will always be done.
➢Other forms of compensation/reward for members such as appointment, business patronages and other forms of empowerment aimed at recouping part of investment in the party may be considered.
➢Public apology by those who unleashed this act of political terror may not be out of place as well.
➢The party reward system has to be reworked, persistent loyalty to the party, demonstrated commitment- financial and moral, should be primary consideration whenever it is time for electoral contest. Higher percentage of appointments, patronages and empowerment, should consistently go to party loyalists who are professionals in their various fields in the spirit of true/genuine reconciliation.
➢The State Chapter of the party needs empowerment through key appointments to loyal members of the party, particularly those who toiled and invested in the last electoral contest, so the feeling of having been used and dumped could be erased from the mind of our members.
➢Aspirants across board should be seen as major and critical stakeholders in the affairs and running of the party; having invested heavily in the party – we represent the players in a football scenario without whom there will be no officials.
➢As such, after the conclusion of primaries in future, all aspirants should be part of the election working committee from wards, local, state and national levels. This will engender team work and eliminate the feeling of “rejection” by the other aspirants.
➢Restoration of party supremacy over all members, including political office holders. This is to ensure that party administration is well separated from governance for the sustenance of an enduring internal party democracy.
➢The current State EXCO seems to be unrepentantly belligerent, and not supportive of the reconciliation efforts of the national leadership going by its recent outburst in the press maligning some prominent Members/leaders of our party in a futile attempt at white-washing their character-deficient “Emperor” before the National leadership. The truth is, it’s simply a deceit. Their “Emperor” currently has a huge goodwill deficit in Oyo State, talk less of the whole of the South; he represents a deadly virus which we are currently battling with in Oyo State. The national leadership should please resist the temptation of exporting this virus to other States of the South. Kindly take as a note of sincerest advice.
➢With this current posture of the party EXCO in the State, it has demonstrated its insincerity in all these reconciliation efforts and is therefore not likely to achieve the necessary unity the party requires to return to power, come 2023. Something has to be done.