THAT the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Ogun state has been in perpetual imbroglio in the last few years is to state the obvious. What is even more incomprehensible by observers is the refusal of the competing camps within the party to sheathe their swords and consent to peace.
With the defeat of the party by the ACN in the last elections, it was expected that everyone would logically see the need to close rank, reconcile and become a united party for challenges ahead.
Contrary to this expectation, the party has further sunk into the same vagaries that led to its implosion and eventual loss of power. Several opinions and commentaries have been proffered on what the problem with Ogun PDP is. Peace initiatives have been brokered, but just like a decaying wound, the crisis continues to exacerbate; with accusing fingers pointed in the direction of different leaders and power brokers within the party.
However, the evolution and role of Prince Buruji Kashamu among these persons was initially indecipherable. Quite a number of PDP faithful did not initially understand his intentions and desires. He has neither held a political office nor has he put himself forward for one. Yet, Buruji kashamu has metamorphosed into an institution and a recurring decimal in the affairs of Ogun PDP in the last few years.
Importantly, the post_2011 elections squabbling within the party features his name as the main protagonist of the current good and lofty ideals of the party while there are equally many antagonists to his philosophy and activities. Equally, the perception of Kashamu as a cancer in the life of the party looms large before him.
A more contrasting form of his image is also that of a Mr. Fix_It such that he is now dubbed the strongman of Ogun PDP especially with the enormous influence he currently wields. Whichever way he is viewed, Prince Buruji Kashamu is the crux and epicenter of the wrangling within the party today which has sparked the question as to whether he is a liability or asset to the PDP in Ogun state.
Having joined the party few years back, his first intervention was the empowerment of party faithful across the state. At the time, he enjoyed a robust relationship with Gbenga Daniel such that the name of the NGO undertaking the empowerment was called OGD OMO ILU foundation.
Hundreds of assorted cars, empowerment equipment/materials and huge sums of money were being distributed to party faithful across board to elevate their welfare. This endeared him to the whole gamut of Ogun PDP. At the point when his popularity soared and it became as though he was becoming the defacto leader, some supporters that fed fat on misinformation sowed seeds of discord between Kashamu and Daniel; and they severed relationship. Not to be outdone in the emerging politics of wit and brawn, Kashamu intensified his philanthropic gestures to party men. Consequently, he became a strong power centre in Ogun PDP. The evolution of Omo Ilu foundation was so thick that some stalwarts of the party that were falling out with Daniel pitched their tent with Kashamu.
The seed of what has become an issue in the party today was sown when the power lever of Ogun PDP was unwittingly transmitted to Buruji when the battle over the legitimate party executive raged between the Daniel backed Joju Fadairo Executive and the Dayo Soremi harmonized executive which enjoyed the support of Kashamu and other forces within the party.
It is pungent to note inter alia that the aggregation of the anti_Daniel forces ably led by Obasanjo was not able to politically conquer Daniel but their breakthrough came with the intervention of Buruji Kashamu who deployed his deep pocket and political sagacity to liberate the party from Daniel’s throttlehold and also immensely supported the Dayo Soremi executive until it was validated as the authentic one by the courts.
The battle that swept Daniel and his supporters out of the party was led by Kashamu, hence, It was not unusual that the party executive deferred to him. It is this looming image and influence that is unsettling the same party stalwarts that fell out with Daniel; and they now seek to pull the rug off the feet of Buruji Kashamu. The seeming insurmountability of this mission is causing fresh ripples within the party and one begins to wonder how the centre broke again even with the exit of Daniel.
Does it not appear that the fresh opponents to Kashamu Buruji were friends of convenience and saw him as a means to an end_ being the political alienation of Gbenga Daniel? Kashamu was a rallying point and beautiful bride of party leaders in the battle for the reclamation of the soul of Ogun PDP from Daniel
. This politically ebullient bride is being plotted against but the bride has constantly and is still endearing himself to the larger family. Will this bride be willing to let go off the combustible matrimonial home that Ogun PDP has become? Only time will tell.