By Wale Adedayo
There are two major reasons which, ordinarily, should forbade me from writing much about the race for the National Chairman of the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), because former Ogun State Governor, Otunba Gbenga Daniel (OGD), who was my boss, is running.
Of course, one is not about to campaign for him, given the acrimonious nature of our parting of ways, which almost led to my assassination, and the fallout of which remains the subject of litigation at Shagamu High Court, Ogun State. Secondly, son of man is a member of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), and the internal affairs of PDP should not be one’s business, ordinarily.
But despite these, I feel one owes it a duty to shine the light on some issues, which are often blurred by the propaganda involved with partisan politics. Son of man has enough experience in that regard, particularly as a former member of PDP at the highest level in Ogun State. It was for the same reason I intervened recently when OGD alleged in a petition that Senator Buruji Kashamu (PDP, Ogun East) made an attempt to assassinate him.
My intervention, at the time, was to the effect that NOTHING like that could have taken place. Kashamu could not have organized OGD’s assassination in the manner described in the petition. Ko le werk. It was just not possible. OGD apparently wanted to use the Police to ‘keep Kashamu away’, so that his major nemesis in Ogun State PDP could be caged, officially.
But reading aspects of Kashamu’s reaction to OGD’s declaration for the National Chairmanship race in Abuja yesterday brought a mischievous smile to my face. Kashamu got some things right, both politically and factually. And, the others?:
- OGD has not won any election after the 2007 general elections. At least, not in the mould of previous ones. But that does not mean the man lacks the capacity to win. He has lost quality foot-soldiers. Those who could look him straight in the eyes and tell him home truths are no longer with him. However, OGD remains a deft political manager. His depth of political understanding, if negative values are taken away, is far more than those of those in the race with him. He knows the Ins and Outs of Third World politics. He has limitless access to the tactics and tools needed to win an election for his party of choice IF the right foot-soldiers are with him along with quality positive Public Opinion.
- Yes, OGD had issues with the Ogun State Government on corruption. But, at some point, things were almost ‘sorted out’ with the Governor, Senator Ibikunle Amosun, leading to a slowdown in the process for calling him to account. We even understand most, if not all, the properties earlier seized were returned to him. But a yawa ‘gassed’ with OGD’s tacit ‘knocking’ of Amosun in his response to a riposte by Kashamu recently. We gathered that response forced Amosun’s hands to ‘reverse’ the forgiveness earlier granted OGD through the pleadings of a highly placed member of SIA’s Administration.
- Lagos West Senatorial District’s Senator Olamilekan Adeola Solomon (Yayi) is believed to have benefitted from an instruction to OGD’s supporters in Ogun State to ‘follow Yayi’. Of course, OGD remains Hon. Ladi Adebutu’s (PDP, Remo Federal Constituency) Leader. This is correct as well. But, to me, there is nothing wrong about that in Nigerian politics. The Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) fielded Nuhu Ribadu as Presidential Candidate in the 2011 presidential election. Yet, the Ogas at the top of the ACN political machinery delivered their supporters to former President Goodluck Jonathan of the PDP. So, no kain about OGD’s support for Yayi at all! Ko si oro mbe!!!
- Political violence and killings? Hmmm! As stated in a paper son of man wrote during the sitting of Ogun State Truth Commission a few years back, there is NO saint in that matter o! As it was in the First and Second Republics, so it is now. OGD was not alone in his involvement. And that is the truth. Kashamu may need to read my small piece, again, https://www.uhurutimes.com/understanding-political-violence-in-ogun-state/
- Serial betrayer and Liar? Chai! No comment on that one.
The PDP National Chairman Question
One of these three persons would have been my choice if the contest is limited to the South-West:
- Jimi Agbaje: Honest. Cerebral. Loyal to a fault. He would have been a new face to a party many have come to perceive as synonymous with corruption occasioned by myopic politics, dishonesty and a dearth of persons with critical thinking at its topmost echelon.
- Olagunsoye Oyinlola: The former Osun State Governor is a quality grassroots mobiliser, who would have been a veritable asset to the PDP in the South-West, which the party seriously need to court towards the 2019 general elections. He is an expert in building consensus and very loyal to ideals along with persons he relates with. Unfortunately for the PDP, Oyinlola is a Leader of APC after being pushed out by loyalists of Jonathan towards the 2015 general elections.
- OGD: In a particular way, OGD’s depth of Nigeria’s political issues is almost on the same level with that of former Minister of Transport, Chief Ebenezer Babatope. He remains a very passionate Yoruba soaked in Oodua ideology. With the brains God endowed OGD and his administrative acumen alongside a deep understanding of First aand Second Republic politics, he is far ahead of Oyinlola and Agbaje. But Agbaje and Oyinlola are honest and loyal to a fault.
Since Oyinlola is out of the picture, and Agbaje does not have what it takes to play politics in these parts, I’ll give it to OGD. Of course, I am aware there are a few others from the South-West jostling for the same position. To me, 2019 will not be Moinmoin. Only an experienced hand, who knows the Oke and Odo of politics can deliver the goods for the PDP, which is not currently in power.
Just my two cents, before dem say I don commit contempt of court o!!!