BY TIMOTHY AGBOR, OSOGBO
Immediate past governor of Osun State, Adegboyega Oyetola, has inaugurated an 11-man committee with the mandate to stimulate, revamp, restructure and reposition the All Progressives Congress in the state.
The setting-up of the committee was conceptualised after a series of meetings held between Oyetola and all strata of the party, including the Igbimo Agba, the leadership of the party, critical stakeholders and the youth, to chart a new course for the APC in the state.
Inaugurating the committee in Osogbo, the former governor said Osun remains the home of the Progressives in the South West, hence the need for the APC members in the state to take necessary and decisive steps to reposition the party and make it stronger and more formidable.
He noted that statistics had in recent times, raised the party high in performance as reflected in the significant increment in the number of votes recorded by the party from various elections since 2018.
The newly inaugurated Committee which is chaired by the former Health Minster, Prof. Isaac Adewole has former Special Adviser to the Governor on Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs, Rasak Adeosun as its Secretary.
Other members of the Committee are State APC Treasurer, Femi Kujembola; Kunle Ayantoye; Mudasiru Toogun; Ipoola Binuyo; Emmanuel Folorunsho; Akintunde Adegboye; Bade Falade; Idowu Falade; Gbenga Oladehinde and Olasunkanmi Akinola.
The committee’s terms of reference, according to Oyetola are: to review activities of the party in recent times; consider the aspect of party administration, i.e structure, funding, discipline and reconciliation; make recommendations for an ethical reward system in the State.
Others are: to create a blueprint for the future of the party in Osun State; propose templates for resolving existing or future grievances among party members and any other matter that can assist the growth and development of the party.
Disclosing that the committee has 8 weeks to submit its report, Oyetola said the committee has the liberty to co-opt any member of the party it deems essential to the task given to it.
Speaking further, the ex-governor averred that consistent credible performance of the APC in past elections was a clear indication that the party remains the popular choice of the electorate and the party to beat anytime, any day in Osun.
“After the 2018 governorship election, the outcome of the 2019 General Elections showed significant improvement in the party’s fortunes in our State.
“Despite the challenges of the July 16 2022, governorship election, the number of votes harvested by our party in that election significantly improved from what we recorded in 2018. This clearly shows that our party, the APC is still popular and remains the party to beat in Osun, any time, any day.
“Osun electorate again demonstrated their love for the APC in the last Presidential election as they gave our president-elect 343,945 votes, despite the intimidation, violence and killings that characterised that election.
“At the last count, we lost 25 of our members across the State during the last three elections. At this juncture, shall will rise for a minute silence in honour of our members that were killed just because they identified with us. May their gentle souls rest in perfect peace. Amen.
“If the Osun electorate could identify with us despite the intimidation, harassment, violence and killings perpetrated by the PDP, then, we must brace up to sustain the interest of the Osun people in our party”, he said.
Oyetola who expressed displeasure over the political onslaught and series of attacks launched on members of the APC before and during the last general elections, called on the party loyalists to remain resolute in the face of intimidations.
He added, “Let me, at this juncture, appeal to our party members and supporters across the State not to allow themselves to be intimidated. They will want to harass you but do not be cowed. They will even want to provoke you. But do not allow yourself to be provoked. I appeal to you to maintain the peace, religious tolerance and harmonious relationship our State is known for. Soon, we shall see the light at the end of the tunnel.
“You all made this day possible. You unanimously supported the idea of having this committee with a view to charting a new course for our party. This address will not be complete without paying glowing tributes to our elders and party stakeholders for accepting to serve on this committee. Posterity will always be kind to you all.”
Speaking on behalf of members of the newly inaugurated committee, Prof. Adewole, pledged the committee’s readiness to provide a credible pathway for reconciliation and rehabilitation of the party structure, administration and activities in the State.
“We’re charged to ensure an inclusive party that offers every member a space to thrive and prosper. We shall create rooms for all, especially the youth, and build a great future for this dynamic party. We, the committee members, firmly believe the party will become more potent after this exercise”, he assured.
In their separate remarks, Speaker Osun House of Assembly, Hon. Timothy Owoeye, the State Secretary to the party, Hon. Alao Kamoru Olabisi; APC State Youth Leader, Hon. Goke Akinwemimo among others urged members of the Committee to act to the letter by being fair to all.