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APC: New lease of life after Ondo victory?

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  • *Adeyeye, Omo- Agege, Alasoadura, others hail Tinubu
  • *Oshiomhole tasks Akeredolu on uncommon leadership 

By Clifford Ndujihe, Henry Umoru, Emma Ovuakporie, Simon Ebegbulem & Johnbosco Agbakwuru

THERE appears to be a new beginning in the All Progressives Congress, APC, following the victory of its candidate, Mr. Rotimi Akeredolu, SAN, in last Saturday’s governorship election in Ondo State.

The party went into the election with a disunited front following the crisis that trailed the governorship primaries, which appeared to have balkanised APC into two: Abuja APC that favoured Akeredolu and the South-West APC that wanted the primary revisited. President Muhammadu Buhari, APC National Chairman, Chief John Odigie-Oyegun, some APC governors  and  serving ministers from the South-West supported Akeredolu,

Rotimi Akeredolu and his wife Betty jubilating at his residence in Owo after the declaration of the result by INEC.PHOTO;AKEEM SALAU
Rotimi Akeredolu and his wife Betty jubilating at his residence in Owo after the declaration of the result by INEC.PHOTO;AKEEM SALAU

But Tinubu, three South-West governors and some other leaders kicked. In fact, Chief Olusola Oke, who was aggrieved after the APC primaries defected to the Alliance for Democracy, AD and became the governorship candidate. He came third in Saturday’s election.

However, the misgivings, appear to be only skin deep following Tinubu’s congratulation of Akeredolu, on Sunday, shortly after he was announced the winner of the election. Tinubu, also said it was time for all aggrieved APC leaders and members in the Ondo debacle to sheathe their swords and come together. He paid glowing tributes to Buhari, describing him as national leader of the party. Before now, Tinubu had been going with the title, ‘national leader’ of the APC.

Tinubu’s comments elicited plaudits from leaders and members of the APC, yesterday.

In APC, politics not a do-or-die affair – Adeyeye

Chief Whip of the Senate, Senator Olusola Adeyeye, APC, Osun Central, hailed Tinubu’s step in congratulating Akeredolu, saying that such a move was an indication that politics has not been reduced to a survivalist do-or-die affair.

Senator Adeyeye in a text message to Vanguard said: “I am very delighted by the statement issued by Asiwaju. The election is over and no matter which side a person was prior to the election, the governor-elect must be given full cooperation to succeed. Such cooperation shows that politics has not been reduced to a survivalist do-or-die affair. Those who expect the APC to implode from internal wrangling will soon see that the APC will march to greater unity and strength.”

Chairman, Senate Committee on Petroleum Resources, Upstream, Senator Omotayo Alasoadura, APC, Ondo Central said, Tinubu’s move was good because ‘’if Asiwaju Tinubu can reconcile with his political family, the better for all.”

Senator Ovie Omo-Agege, APC, Delta Central, who described Senator Tinubu’s comments as very gracious, said that now that the party and its members have decided to put behind them issues that arose during the primary, after and before the governorship election, it means that the APC would now focus on the future, working together as a united party to address the very serious economic, security and infrastructural challenges facing the country.

Omo- Agege said: “Bola Tinubu’s statement was very gracious. It clearly shows that his partnership with President Muhammadu Buhari to transform Nigeria is alive and continuing.  The victory of Akeredolu is very important to Mr. President because Ondo State is one of the states which he did not win in 2015 in the South-West. What that means is that the people of Ondo State have finally turned their back on politics of self-interest, impunity and corruption which the PDP represents. It is a vote of confidence on Mr. President’s policies to fix the Nigerian economy that is rigged against the people.

“Now that the party has put the acrimonious primaries and election behind, it means APC will now focus on the future, working together as a united party to address the very serious economic, security and infrastructural challenges facing our country.’’

It was all about politics – Rep Magaji

The member representing Birnin-Kudu/Buji Federal Constituency of Jigawa State, on the platform of the APC, Rep. Aliyu Dan Magaji, who also congratulated Akeredolu, stated that what people initially misconstrued as crisis between Tinubu and President Buhari was mere politics.

His words: “There was never  a problem in the party. It was all about politics and politics is about interest. It is commendable that President Buhari is steering the ship of the party and Asiwaju Tinubu is the leader of the party. We are only coming out stronger with the victory.”

It was battle between APC, PDP and some forces—Deputy Speaker

Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives, Yusuff Lasun, while congratulating  Akeredolu, said the result declared by INEC showed the vigorous battle that the APC fought against the incumbent PDP and some forces. “This victory only proved that APC is accepted in the South-West  and that Ondo people have also decided to join the ruling party so that the state can move forward. Akeredolu’s victory is a sign of something good that is coming to the state,” he added.

Victory is harbinger of unity in South-West — Omidiran

The member representing Ayedaade/Irewole/Isokan Federal Constituency of Osun State, APC, Ayo Omidiran said: “As a loyal party member, our party won. It is our wish that the South-West will be in the hand of APC. The victory of APC will be a harbinger of unity. I support my leader, Asiwaju Tinubu, I support the president for his call for unity of the party.”

Use your victory to provide uncommon leadership – Oshiomhole tells Akeredolu

Immediate past governor of Edo State, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole, urged Akeredolu, to see his victory as an opportunity to provide uncommon leadership to Ondo people.

In a statement by his media office, Oshiomhole said: “In victory, Comrade, remember that Ondo State and indeed the nation at large expect you to take deliberate steps to strengthen the bond of unity within our party in your state and mobilise our people behind a common purpose.

“In office, strive to dispense the greatest good to the greatest number even with the limited resources within the shortest time possible. The other good news, I think, is that you cannot be described as an accidental governor. You contested for the same office four years ago and lost but did not allow that setback to dampen your resolve to serve. Finally, history has reached your doorstep. Comrade, let the sun shine again.

“If ever you had any illusion, I am sure your experience during the gruelling months of campaign in which you had opportunity to physically engage the people across the 18 local governments in Ondo State would have provided you the clarity on the challenge ahead and how to order your priorities. Incidentally, you are coming into office when your neighbour, Edo State, also has a new governor in the person of Mr. Godwin Obaseki, who brings on board unblemished technocratic experience like you.’’

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