Oyo State Governor, Engr. Seyi Makinde has criticised the people protesting against the setting up of the South West regional security outifit, codenamed Operation Amotekun.
Makinde, who spoke at the Peoples Democratic Party(PDP) unification rally held in Ibadan on Wednesday, said the people demonstrating against the security outfit are not good ambassadors of the Yoruba race.
He said: Last week some people went to demonstrate in Lagos that they don’t want Amotekun. Yesterday, they also went to Ekiti state for the same demonstration that they don’t want Amotekun, are they good ambassadors of the Yoruba race?
“We want Amotekun and Amotekun has come to stay in this state and in this region. Let us show love to those who have come to join and rejoined us and all our leaders who have returned back to the party. We welcome them all.”
Addressing the rally, Makinde said the rally is part of the effort to ensure unity of the party in the region, noting that if all is well with the PDP in South West, all will be well with Nigeria as a whole.
“This rally is important to us, it is the beginning of our unity in the party and the region as a whole. If the South West is peaceful, the entire country will be peaceful.
“We now use this opportunity to welcome our brothers and sisters from APC, ADP, ZLP, SDP and ADC.
“I want you to take home two words, the first is that they said we shouldn’t hold this rally because of coronavirus, but it is their boss himself that said there is coronavirus in their party; There is no coronavirus in our party and may we not be plague with the virus.
“Finally, I assure you all that we all will reap from the party and in the region. I want to thank you all party members in the state and region, you have promised to support me always and you have also did that,” Makinde said.
Speaking, a former Deputy National Chairman of the party, Chief Bode George said the PDP is open to everybody because it has been infected by a virus but working to harmonise its home ahead of the next election.
He said “I remember almost twenty years ago that we came here, the party is ready to sweep the South West and I am sure that will be the same thing all over the country. And this is just the beginning.
“If the leader of their party declared publicly that coronavirus is already in their party, who wants to catch virus? it’s a plague. We have no virus in our party,let people who are ready and willing come to our own fold.”
The unification rally which attracted party members from the six South West states of Oyo, Osun, Ondo, Ogun, Ekiti and Lagos also witnessed the return of a former National Secretary of the party and ex-Governor of Osun State, Prince Olagunsoye Oyinlola, a former Secretary to Osun State Government, Alhaji Fatai Akinbade and their supporters return into the PDP fold.
Others who returned to the party include former Nigerian Ambassador to Jordan, Taofeek Arapaja; Senator Gbenga Babalola; Mr Olalere Gbadamosi; Hon. Oladipupo Adetutu Kensington; Remi Oseni; Wale Adegoke among others.
Speaking on behalf of the returnees, Ex-Governor Oyinlola said he decided to rejoin the PDP as a result of deceit he discovered to have characterised the All Progressives Congress(APC).
He said the people of the region fell for the restructuring card brandished by the APC.
The former military administrator accused the ruling party of sectionalism and favouring a particular tribe in the country with appointments and juicy positions at the expense of other tribes in the country.
“I will not speak much but I need you to be patient because there are some news we need to take home.
“When I told my supporters in Osun that we are going to Ibadan, that that is the place where we will make our return to the PDP open and formal, some of them asked me that why would that be.
” I told them that Ibadan is the historical headquarters of politics in South West Nigeria. And more so, when a farmer gets to his farm in the morning and see various animals including lion and leopard on his farm, you know that, that is more than what a mere farmer can handle, he will have to go and call the chief hunter. That is the reason.
“With where politics and governance has reached in the country, I don’t think they (the APC) are doing what is right. I think I know a little bit about the making of the government of the day, and what they used as the joker to deceive us in the South West was that they promised they will restructure the way we run the political structure of the country. That was what we used to sell and woo the people of the region.
“But, when it was time to restructure, they said they don’t understand what restructuring means.
“Secondly, they are greedy set of people. My reason for this conclusion is that when the former Minister of Finance, Kemi Adeosun was removed, she was replaced by a northerner. When Ayo Oke, former DG, National Intelligence Agency was removed, he was replaced by a northerner and recently they removed Peter Dakuku, who did they replaced him with?
“They know how to take care of their own selfish interest at the expense of other people in the same country.
“For this reason, I want you to let our people know at home that it is time to restructure politics in the South West region because we cannot be working like elephants and eating like ants.
“But I also have a warning and an advise for our party, so that we can always have success. I beg us for God sake, we must stoop sometimes and allow for some folly to our wisdom because anyone who thinks he is all wise and all knowing always end up as the greatest fool at times.
“My second advise is that, we must shun the attitude of saying we are all sufficient. We must always ensure that we add up one and one from one place to the other, with that we will always increase our numbers,” Oyinlola said.
The unification rally was attended by leaders and members of the party from the national secretariat and South West zone.