A former commissioner for works and transport in Oyo State under Governor Abiola Ajimobi and chieftain of the African Democratic Congress, ADC, Dr Yunus Akintunde, has boasted that his new party will emerge victorious in the 2019 governorship election and form the next government of the state.
He spoke at the weekend on a popular political programme on Fresh 105.9 fm monitored by OYO INSIGHT.
Akintunde, who was a chieftain of the governing All Progressives Congress, APC, until it was hit by a crisis, leading to the defection of members of the break-away Unity Forum to the ADC, based his optimism on the presence of “grassroots politicians who know the game and can play it well” in the ADC.
Nigerian Tribune quoted the Oyo-born governorship aspirant as declaring that what was left in the APC after Unity Forum members exited the party were remnants who would not be able to save the party from defeat when 2019 elections approach, adding that “APC is gone in Oyo State.”
“Majority of APC members have joined ADC and what you have in the party called APC are remnants. I know as a matter of fact that APC is gone in Oyo State. Those in ADC are grassroots politicians. We are not talking of politicians of social media or Facebook politicians.
“I know as a matter of fact that we have seven governorship aspirants, nine House of Representatives, two Senators and almost 14 House of Assembly lawmakers.
“Be that as it may, you don’t measure the capacity of a party with mandate members. Those are the people that were elected.
“You assess a party by the grassroots leaders who know the game very well. We are using those figures to show our strength nonetheless. As far as I know, with my little knowledge of Oyo State politics, the gatekeepers at the grassroots are in ADC.
“APC won the last governorship election with 34 per cent of the votes. That was when Unity Forum and Disunity Forum were together in the party. Now, everybody is on his own. I want to tell you that discussions and negotiations are going on. People are talking across parties. There will be realignment and more realignment. In the next seven days, the political equation will change,” he said.
Asked when the structure of ADC would be put in place in the state, he replied that the congresses were being delayed to give room for others they were talking to across parties on how to work together to get rid of APC.
“If it is necessary for ADC to have a structure, it can happen with the next forty-eight hours. We want to give room for other people who may want to come. It is far better to be an ex-officio member of a party that will form the government than to be the chairman of a party that will suffer a loss in the election,” he said.