The rift between Governor Adegboyega Oyetola of Osun state and his predecessor, Rauf Aregbesola, the Minister of Interior, may once again manifest on Saturday as factions of the All Progressives Congress (APC), goes for parallel congress.
A faction loyal to Aregbesola had alleged that the state Governor has refused to ensure fair play in the planning of the coming congress, threatening to go for parallel congress.
The Caretaker Secretary of APC in the state, Hon Rasaq Salinsile, alleged that the nomination forms from the party national secretariat have been hijacked by the group belonging to Governor Oyetola, noting that his caucus was ready to hold its own congress.
Salinsile who is a member of an caucus, The Osun Progressives (TOP) that Aregbesola belonged, alleged that the Governor’s group, “Ileri Oluwa” took the congress committee to the government house to deny other members of the party the nomination form.
He disclosed that the ‘TOP’ eventually got a form from Abuja and will go ahead with congresses on Saturday.
Salinsile said, “we didn’t sit anywhere to decide on the mode of election. Out of the three options that we have in electing officers, consensus, direct and indirect primary, in a situation where you are going for consensus, the constitution of the party clearly stated that all stakeholders must have to agree, not one must be left out. If one disagrees, you must look for another option. In this instance, as the State Secretary of the party, I was not carried along.
“I learned that nomination form arrived on Sunday, but up till now, I have not seen a copy. Robust rumours have it that it was in the Governor’s house. The form ought to have been delivered at the Secretariat, in my custody as party scribe, I should sign for its delivery, but I didn’t even see it.
“They are even threatening not to give anyone apart from members of Ileri Oluwa the form, but we shall meet on Saturday. We got our forms from Abuja. We paid to the national Secretariat and got the form there. We will wait for them till Saturday and if they decided to go ahead with the congress without us, we will hold our congress, we will adopt direct primary and allow the national leadership to decide which group is wrong,” Salinsile stated.
But, the Commissioner for Political Affairs and Intergovernmental Relations, Hon Taiwo Akeju, denied the allegation that Oyetola has hijacked the ward congresses nomination form.
He said, “government house is not party secretariat. The Congress members are around. The forms are available in designated areas. The party members know where to get the forms. Sanisile should not mislead our members.”
Meanwhile, another caucus within the party, “Opomulero group,” has appealed to the aggrieved members to sheath their sword and join the party to ensure successful conduct of the congresses.