We don’t want you in APC, Akinlade warns…
Unfolding event has indicated the People’s Democratic Party, PDP governorship aspirant in the last gubernatorial election in Ogun State, Ladi Adebutu, may have finalised plans to cross over to the All Progressives Congress, APC.
This is coming days after the Allied People’s Movement’s Adekunle Akinlade made a similar decision and returned to the ruling APC.
Akinlade was former Governor Ibikunle Amosun’s anointed successor but when he lost the APC ticket, he and other loyalists of Amosun defected to the APM in October 2018 to actualise their aspirations.
As APM’s standard-bearer, Akinlade’s suit challenging the victory of the incumbent Governor Dapo Abiodun as the duly elected governor of Ogun State was nullified at the Supreme Court last week.
So, according to him, it became imperative for them to set the grievances that led them out of the party aside and return having used all available means to fight what he termed the injustice meted out to them by the National Executive of the APC.
It would be recalled that in the run up to the last election, Adebutu, a PDP stalwart who had lost the governorship ticket to Buruji Kashamu, entered into a power-sharing agreement with the APM valid for a period of three years from the March 7 date it was signed.
Adebutu was expected to mobilise members of his faction of the PDP to support Akinlade’s victory at the end of which he would get “Commissioners (2), Senior Special Assistants (3), Special Advisers (2), Special Assistants (5), Chairman — SUBEB or Local Government Service Commission, DG-Lands or OPIC Chairman.”
The agreement also included the award of contracts for “100 kilometres of community roads per federal constituency per annum; Ilisan-Ago Iwoye road; Iperu/Ilisan cargo airport (reactivation); OKFTZ, 5 mini-water works including reticulations per federal constituency; Sagamu-Ogijo-Ikorodu dualisation; Ijebu Ode-Ejinrin dualisation and Oba Erinwole By-Pass Sagamu.”
Also included in the agreement for the Adebutu-led group are appointments in executive director and director positions in key federal government agencies including the Federal Housing Authority, Federal Road Maintenance Authority, FERMA; Bank of Industry, BOI; Federal Mortgage Bank, Ogun-Osun River Basin, NERFUND and PTDF among others.
“The understanding is made with copious note that Sen. Ibikunle Amosun and Hon Akinlade, have respectfully agreed to implement all the above stated clauses with each assuming shared responsibilities on those projects in Ogun Central and West Districts respectfully,” the document read.
Alas, APM lost at the polls and at the courts. Consequently, Akinlade has returned to the APC in hope that Amosun will wrestle the levers of power from Governor Abiodun come 2023. That is Adebutu’s dilemma. He feels left in the cold in the unfolding power configuration. Considering again that the federal appointments that have come the way of Ogun State went to the Amosun Camp, hence, his decision to defect and be in the middle of the action.
However, Akinlade was reported to have assured his inner caucus that Adebutu would not be welcomed to the party and that he would do everything to prevent him. In his reaction, the Adebutu camp has dismissed Akinlade’s antics describing him as a ‘baby’ politician who is intimidated by Adebutu’s political influence. According to Adebutu, Akinlade has had his opportunity in 2019 and squandered it; he (Adebutu) would have the APC governorship ticket come 2023 and that Akinlade and his godfather should live with that.