Loyalists of Osun State Governor, Adegboyega Oyetola, and Minister of Interior, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola, on Tuesday, exchanged words over the latter’s demand for the removal of Gboyega Famodun as the All Progressives Congress, (APC) chairman in the state.
The party members loyal to Aregbesola-led The Osun Progressive (TOP) had embarked on a peaceful protest in the state, calling for the removal of Famodun over the party’s dismal performance in the just concluded governorship election in the state.
The protesters armed with placards with inscriptions such as ‘Osun APC Needs Restructuring,’ ‘Famodun Must Go,’ ‘Save Osun APC From Total Collapse,’ ‘Sack Famodun,’ ‘Aregbesola is the Soul Of APC/Progressive Politics in Osun,’ ‘There is No Life in Osun APC Again,’ ‘2023: Asiwaju May Lose Osun With Famodun As APC Chairman,’ among others.
Addressing journalists at the House of Assembly complex, the leader of the protesters, Abosede Oluwaseun, said the party needs to be restructured from the unit, ward, local government and state levels for it to be united and formidable ahead of the coming general elections.
“With conscious, sincere and objective analysis of the outcome of the governorship election, we discovered that the electoral loss is not only self-induced by the party’s administrators, it also reflects party issues which had been raised by concerned minds in the recent past.
“The party issues, which are unattended to till the present moment, regrettably cost our party the electoral victory and as concerned progressives, we felt the necessity to inform you that it is not safe to approach the 2023 general elections with the same paper-tiger party under the leadership of Prince Gboyega Famodun, the state chairman of the APC in Osun State,” Oluwaseun said.
Protest shameful, callous—APC chairman
Reacting, the APC chairman, in a statement by his media aide, Kola Olabisi, described the protest and demand as shameful, callous and wicked.
“The protest was shameful, callous, primitive, selfish, wicked, misplaced and inconsiderate for the Aregbesola supporters who glaringly worked against the success of Governor Oyetola at the polls to now be canvassing restructuring of the party through a sponsored protest.
“Assuming, but not conceding, that there are challenges within the party, protesters should be told that they lacked moral right to either suggest or effect any likely solution as it is on record that they massively and collectively worked against Oyetola, the APC governorship candidate in the just-concluded election in line with the series of their threat.
“One would have thought that the appropriate place for them to canvass for the restructuring of any party is Senator Ademola Adeleke’s Ede country home, who they voted for with flaunted pride.
“If I may ask, at what point did it occur to you that the political party that you had abandoned for about three years, which you have been working against needs restructuring?” the statement read.
We’ll unite party-Speaker
Addressing the protesters, the Speaker of the House of Assembly, Mr Timothy Owoeye, assured the party members that necessary steps would be taken to make the party united and formidable.
“I want to assure you of a fact that every necessary step to be taken for our party to be united and formidable to continue to rule and win future elections would be taken,” Owoeye said.