- ‘Osun residents voted in memory of Isiaka Adeleke’
- I’ve learned my lessons – Aregbesola
Last week’s victory of Otunba Ademola Adeleke, Peoples Democratic Party candidate in Osun West Senatorial by-election of Osun State, has now put pressure on the ruling All Progressives Congress in the state, making the APC to scurry off to its drawing board.
Insiders revealed to The Point in Osogbo that Governor Rauf Aregbesola was rattled by the outcome of the poll, as he barely spoke to anyone in the aftermath of the announcement of result by the Independent National Electoral Commission.
Even before results of the by-election were announced on Sunday morning in Iwo, the Osun West Senatorial District headquarters, Aregbesola, Hussein and other members of the APC had been in shock, having received the unofficial results
Aregbesola’s APC candidate, Alhaji Mudashiru Hussein, a former senator, was defeated by Adeleke, the younger brother of the late Senator Isiaka Adeleke. The senior Adeleke had died three months ago.
The younger Adeleke really wanted to succeed his late brother in the senate on the platform of the APC, which was his brother’s party, but he was denied the ticket, a development that made a willing PDP give him its ticket on a platter of gold.
The late Isiaka Adeleke, who was the first executive governor of Osun State, had been warming up to contest for governor again when he died under befuddling circumstances.
HOW ADELEKE SECURED VICTORY
Even before results of the by-election were announced on Sunday morning in Iwo, the Osun West Senatorial District headquarters, Aregbesola, Hussein and other members of the APC had been in shock, having received the unofficial results, a situation that resulted in apprehension around the collation centre. Speculations soon filtered in that there were attempts by the governor and other top echelon of his party at the centre to manipulate the results of the election in favour of Hussein.
After few hours’ delay, Baritor Kpagih, the INEC Residential Electoral Commissioner, announced the results amidst palpable tension, saying that Adeleke won in nine out of the 10 local government areas that make up the senatorial district. Kpagih consequently returned Adeleke as senator to complete the tenure of his late elder brother who died on April 23.
Adeleke was declared winner with 97, 480 votes against Hussein’s, who polled 66,116 out of the 171,575 accredited voters.
What became more embarrassing for the APC was that its candidate narrowly escaped being disgraced in his polling unit 1, Ward 3 in Ejigbo Local Government. Hussein, who had during his campaigns boasted of winning all the 10 local government areas in the district, got 152 votes while Adeleke of THE PDP got 148 votes: a difference of just four votes.
Adeleke’s victory came in less than two years to the end of Aregbesola’s tenure as permutations rise for the 2018 governorship election.
FACTORS THAT HELPED ADELEKE
It was learnt that Adeleke’s immediate elder brother, Dr. Deji Adeleke met with the Senator Iyiola Omisore-led faction of the PDP and the Modu Sheriff’s national faction chaired by Hon. Soji Adagunodo, and asked them to team up and ensure victory for Ademola Adeleke in the by-poll. The factions agreed to temporarily sheathe their swords for the purpose of defeating Aregbesola.
Also, other political parties aside from the APC, asked their candidates to step down for Adeleke and that their members should vote massively for him.
Another factor was that, sentiments and sympathy for the late Adeleke ruled the ballots. The public felt that the late Isiaka Adeleke should be compensated for his generous heart and achievements for the people of his constituency when he was in the Senate.
In fact, political analysts in the state believed that Adeleke’s victory was due to the good deeds of his late elder brother. A member of the PDP, Mr. Diran Odeyemi, said, “ Adeleke’s victory is the gain in good name and unity for a purpose. (coming together of the fictionalised PDP). Isiaka Adeleke passed on, his name won election because he was reliable, accessible and a genuine philanthropist.”
And then, in less than two weeks to the by-election, there were what the APC described as politically instigated pockets of protests against the government by pensioners, medical doctors, market women, some workers, students, among others, who accused the Aregbesola-led government of owing them arrears of salaries and for implementing “unfavourable policies.” Some political observers described the by-election as “protest votes” against Aregbesola by the
Ordinarily, some residents appeared frustrated and tired of the APC reign in the state. These people were eager to vote out the APC at every single opportunity. Aside this, harsh utterances of Governor Aregbesola who had led the campaign train of his candidate, Hussein, to all the 10 local government areas, against the Adelekes, contributed to the party’s
No doubt, the outcome of the concluded by-poll would reshape political structures that parties might had put in place for the 2018 governorship election in the state.
‘WE HAVE LEARNED OUR LESSONS’
Governor Aregbesola in his congratulatory message to the winner, admitted that he and the party had learned their “lessons” and “will be back stronger.”
The APC chairman in the state, Mr. Famodun, also stressed that the party would emerge stronger in the governorship election.
According to him, “We shall study the pattern of the result, learn the right lessons from it and return stronger for the next election. We shall remain resolute in our commitment as a political party to the welfare of our people, building them up today in order to prepare them for a better tomorrow.”
When contacted, the PDP factional chairman in the state, Hon. Soji Adagunodo maintained that the victory in the by-election was a clear message that APC would lose again in the governorship
“As you can see, our victory was anticipated. The people are already tired of Aregbesola’s propaganda and they are again ready for the APC come next year governorship election,” he stated.