By our reporter
The Youth Wing of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Osun State, on Wednesday, called on President Muhammadu Buhari to caution his Minister of Interior, Rauf Aregbesola over his “anti-party conducts, aimed at grounding the party in the state.”
The group said the minister has become “a liability and a political virus to the party as seen in his inward and outward dispositions in recent times.”
Addressing a press conference at the APC State Secretariat, Osogbo, the APC State Youths Leader, Mr. Goke Akinwemimo, noted that the former governor was on a vendetta move to destroy the party in Osun on account of ego tripping and self aggrandizement.
He said the “unscrupulous conduct and attitude of the Minister is becoming worrisome, retrogressive and least expected from a serving Minister and former governor who has risen to prominence with the support of the party structure.”
The Osun APC Youth Wing alluded to “the clandestine approach of Aregbesola to mobilising both financial and human resources, including security agents under the supervision of his Ministry to harass and oppress the teeming members in a bid to aid the opposition Peoples Democratic Party in the State as manifested in the outcome of the recently-conducted gubernatorial election.”
The concerned APC Youth Wing further expressed displeasure at “the inhuman dispositions of the former Governor not only to kill the structures of the party but also to relegate its members as seen in his anti-party conduct and the support given to the opposition parties, particularly the candidate of the People’s Democratic Party to emerge.”
According to the Youth Wing, it was in the public knowledge that some political marauders and unscrupulous elements sponsored by the Aregbesola, under the auspices of The Osun Progressives (TOP), embarked on what can be best discribed as public charade and disgrace in Osogbo, Osun State capital, on Tuesday, to blackmail the state leadership of the All Progressives Congress (APC).
“As the youth wing of the party, we are compelled to call on President Muhammadu Buhari to caution the Minister on his callous and vendetta move to destroy our party in Osun on account of ego tripping and personal self aggrandizement,” the group added.
“The conduct is becoming worrisome, retrogressive and worst expected from a serving Minister and Former Governor who has risen to prominence with the support of the party structure.
“Apart from the fact that the former Minister openly sponsored splinter groups to reduce the winning chance of our party to win the just- concluded Governorship Election in the state, he openly declared support for opposition party and moved further to mobilise, including security agents under the supervision of his Ministry to harass and oppress our teeming members to aid the opposition Peoples Democratic Party.
“The PDP candidate openly stated the he received support from the allies of the former governor. Also, the leading figures of his splinter group have since decamped to the PDP. This is aside the fact of using his widely uncirculated newsletter, Osun Defender, to attack our party and Governor Gboyega Oyetola.
“Least to say, Rauf Aregbesola has become a liability and a political virus to Osun APC with his conduct and appears to be on mission to ground our party in the state in aid of the PDP. At this moment, we can not remain silent as youths who have strong confidence in the prospects of APC and capacity to win future elections.
“To understand the dexterity of his political impotency in Osun, the just-concluded election is the first election that APC recorded 375, 027 despite the fact that the minister and his allies openly worked against our party, the highest we recorded during his regime when he was Governor and portrayer as ALL MIGHTY, Governor was less than 300,000 votes. It was under his leadership that we lost Osun West Election to Senator Ademola Adeleke during the 2017 Senatorial by election ridiculously, because we lost 9 out of 10 local governments in Osun West.
“While we are still studying the results of the election with a view to challenging same at the Tribunal, it is important to mention that the over 28,000 votes that were announced as difference for the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to win the election were harvested from Ede North and South alone.
“As at the time of addressing this conference, Aregbesola and his allies are still pursuing a litigation at the Court of Appeal, Akure Division, challenging the Ward Congress we held in Osun. He and his splinter group did not challenge the Local Government congress as well as the State Congress that produced the Prince Gboyega Famodun led state executive of the party.
“It also on record that they contested all the party positions during the last congress and participated in our party primaries where they lost woefully, therefore, the demand of Aregbesola and his allies for dissolution of the party structure is not only ridiculous but also exposes his ill-wish for our party.
“In the last two years, Aregbesola and his allies have confronted our party with lies and deceit far more than the PDP, which clearly explained that the Minister and his allies are on a mission to destroy Osun APC and limit our wining chances, including the coming presidential election in February next year.
“Aregbesola has declared war on our Presidential Candidate in Ijebu-Jesa in one of his public outings. At that outing, he publicly declared his mission to strategise the political fall of Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu. May Allah reject his evil wish. Also viral was the video on his birthday dancing with some of his acolytes that our party’s candidate would be defeated at the governorship election! What kind of reputable and self-dignifying leader does that?
“If the Minister is truly patriotic and sensitive to the plight of the people of Osun and our party, his and his allies’ concern should be how to join our party leaders who are currently reviewing the result of the last governorship election. When he contested in 2007, it took him Three and Half years of a rigorous electoral litigation to reclaim his mandate, and for those who believe in the party how to bounce back should be of priority.
“As stakeholders in the party, we are bold to say that Aregbesola’s stand against our party is not a substantial factor that led to our TEMPORARY SETBACK in the just- concluded election but rather Aregbesola has become a virus that must be removed for our stability and better positioning to win future elections. We are courageous and Osun APC is better positioned without Aregbesola who has become a deadly opposition masquerading as part of our party.
“We consider this intervention as important and inevitable to make our party stronger, viable and responsible to the yearnings of the good people of Osun beyond the grandstanding and hullabaloo of Rauf Aregbesola and his allies.
“We are saying these to alert the national leadership of our dear party that Aregbesola and his allies are no more with APC. Apart from the fact that their previous actions have shown that they are working for opposition, they are equally determined to ensure that we lose other future elections, including the presidential election. They are out to spell doom for our party. But we are prepared to resist them and they will not succeed.”
Speaking on some of the factors that contributed to the ‘temporary setback’ of the party in the last governorship election, the concerned APC youths, said it is on record that the 30 months backlog of half salaries owed workers and pensioners by former Governor Aregbesola became the party’s albatross.
“But rather than support the party, Aregbesola and his allies, the APC youths noted, sold out.
“For this alone, the Minister and his allies have lost every moral ground to even claim membership of our party. In fact, if it were to be in a saner clime, he ought to have resigned as our party member and relinquish his ministerial position because his heart and soul are no longer with our party. If the minister has any wish for our party, it is total collapse, but he will fail in his sinister mission.”
Reacting to the protest of some members of the splinter group of the party called ‘The Osun Progressives’ (TOP), the concerned youths noted that the purported street demonstration was co-sponsored by Aregbesola and PDP’s leadership to prepare grounds for their unholy alliance ahead of the future election by taking over Osun APC completely and conveniently hand it over to PDP to ensure the defeat of the Presidential Candidate, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, as earlier boasted by Aregbesola and his allies. ” But by the Grace of God, the plot will fail,” the APC youths said.