A chieftain of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Kwara, Akogun Iyiola Oyedepo, has accused Gov. AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq for causing the problems threatening the party in the state.
Oyedepo said this on Tuesday in Ilorin while speaking with newsmen at the end of the weekly political dialogue organised by the Nations Leadership Institute.
He warned that APC cannot move forward in the state as it was presently constituted, stressing: “Don’t talk of reconciliation again, there are too many irreconcilable differences.
“Only one person is destroying the party and that is the governor himself. If you have the courage to say this, I will appreciate it. He is the only one destroying the party”.
Oyedepo, who is the President of the institute, declared that if APC should retain Kwara in 2023 elections, leadership of the party must make sure AbdulRazaq did not re-contest.
“If APC leadership still wants Kwara to be won by the party, the first thing they should do is to remove AbdulRahman and don’t allow him to contest in 2023,” he advised.
According to him, that is the only thing that can make the party retain Kwara in 2023.
Oyedepo however urged the national secretariat of the party to ensure that AbdulRazaq conduct free, fair and transparent elections within the party.
“If that one is not done, if AbdulRazaq is still the governor, there would be no way for APC in the state,” he said.
Oyedepo, a lawyer and Chairman, Governing Council of Federal Polytechnic, Ado-Ekiti, stressed that he has not seen what the governor has done differently since he was sworn in.
“I did not see anything that he is doing that is so exciting which makes him to be remarkably different from the people we uprooted.
“We complain that the past administration was not doing local government elections; I was on the radio severally, this one is even worse.
“When I told them that they were not doing LG elections for the first six months, after a year, former Bukola Saraki started to do regular LG election until that regime finished under Abdulfatah Ahmed.
“This is the third year of Gov. AbdulRazaq; there is no democratic structure in the local government.
“If he is spending the money neatly, who will believe him? No one will believe him, is he the only one that can do it neatly, why can’t he allow the constitution to work and people elected to manage the people’s money.
“What is he doing that is remarkably different from others. To me, if APC still needs Kwara state, they should just remove AbdulRahman.
“If they fail to remove AbdulRahman, or permit us to remove him on our own, I am not saying they should remove him undemocratically.
“I am saying they should organise free, fair and transparent congress which would eventually get him removed,” Oyedepo said.
He however said the people that moved to YPP from APC did not make a good decision, adding that “if they cannot work with APC AA, they should come to APC loyal”.
Oyedepo added that APC loyal group was solidly on ground in the 16 local government areas and 193 wards of the state.
“When we moved from PDP to APC, it is me, under my leadership, because I was the chairman that led PDP into APC. Dr Bukola Saraki led his people out. Not less than 85 per cent left APC.
“In any case, Saraki had the governor, he took him away, he has the deputy, he has the Speaker and out of 24 members of the house he took 23 away, he took all the 16 LG chairmen away including councilors. He had party executives; he took all of them away.
“How many people did we meet when we came from PDP? When we left the PDP, out of 36 member executives, only about four refused to follow us; all our LG executives followed us.
“So, we repopulated APC; he took away 85 per cent, we brought 85 per cent and the party remained strong to win election,” he added.
According to him, APC won all elections in 2019 because the party has powerful message for the people which PDP did not have.
“We did not meet any message in APC, we brought a message and we won the elections,” he said.
Reacting to the accusation, Alhaji Tajudeen Aro, the Publicity Secretary of the party in Kwara, wondered what Oyedepo was turning himself to.
He said Oyedepo cannot be talking for the whole party, adding that he is like any other person in APC.
“Like many of us championed this ‘o to ge’ cause, he cannot assume leadership position again and relegate the governor to the background, saying that if we field him, who is that we? Who is he referring to?
“As far as we are concerned, AbdulRazaq is the leader of the party in Kwara and members of the party love him and even the masses that will vote love him.
“What have he used to assess the performance of the governor? People are going to assess us for what we have been able to do, and assess the performance of the governor.
“What he has forgotten is that people will assess us on how far we have gone, what we have been able to do as far as electoral promises are
concerned. Party politicking has nothing to do with poor masses on the street.
“The governor has done creditably well, that is what the people will use, and that was what the people used to judge the people we sent out of government house.
“It was their performance that made us have our way, so the governor would not toe the same path with those people we sent away. What we have now is not business as usual in Kwara,” Aro explained.