Ex-deputy gov, APC leaders allege fraud in Ogun ward congresses - SALIENT TIMES ONLINE


Wednesday, 18 August 2021

Ex-deputy gov, APC leaders allege fraud in Ogun ward congresses

By Our Correspondent

Chieftains of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Ogun State, including a former Deputy Governor, Prince Segun Adesegun, have raised the alarm over alleged fraud in the outcome of the recent ward congresses of the ruling party in the state. 

Adesegun, who was the Director-General of the Dapo Abiodun Campaign Organisation (DACO) in the 2019 general elections, joined other leaders of the party in Ijebu North Local Government Area of the state to register displeasure over the exercise. 

In a petition addressed to Governor Dapo Abiodun dated August 16, 2021, which was obtained yesterday by our correspondent, the APC chieftains expressed shock that the lists of elected executives at the just concluded ward congresses "were changed throughout the wards in the local government."

Apart from the former deputy governor, those who endorsed the petition included a member of the state House of Assembly, Dare Kadiri, Alhaja Tola Quadri, Hon. Jayeola Olusola (Transition Chairman, Ijebu North), Prince Bode Adesegun (Assistant State Secretary), Hon. Bayo Adenuga (former Vice Chairman), Otunba Solomon Oduyemi (former Consultant), Chief Trimisimi Ogunkoya (former State Exco) and Otunba (Mrs) Oduneye Ronke (former Senatorial Woman Leader). 

Others that signed the petition are Evang. Ranti Otubaga, Bishop Ademola, Hon. Yakubu Lamidi, Adesanya Adebowale, Afolabi Olawale, Kamaru Olayiwole and Olatunji Moruf. 

According to them, the results of the APC ward congresses supervised by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and other monitoring agencies were changed throughout the wards in Ijebu North.

There are 11 wards in the Ijebu North Local Government Area. 

The aggrieved APC leaders stated that they believed Governor Abiodun was unaware of the ugly situation, hence their decision to bring it to his attention and call those behind it to order. 

Their petition partly read, "We noticed with utmost dismay that the just concluded ward congresses conducted and supervised by INEC and other monitoring agencies were changed throughout the wards in the local government, it's shocking that the list sent to Abeokuta was not the same sent back to us, it is our believe (sic) that you are not aware of this ugly situation sir. 

"Sir, we appeal passionately to please as a matter of urgency to call the people behind it to order."

Our correspondent learnt that the petition was another twist in the crisis rocking the Ogun APC which had been largely factionalised into rival groups loyal to Governor Abiodun and the immediate past governor of the state, Senator Ibikunle Amosun.

The development came barely 24 hours after the Yobe State Governor and Chairman, Caretaker/Extraordinary Ordinary National Convention Planning Committee of the APC, Mai Mala Buni, led a delegation to Abiodun's Iperu-Remo residence to condole with him on the death of his father. 

Findings by our correspondent revealed that all is not well within the ranks of the ruling party in the state following the conduct of the APC ward congresses. 

Some party members in Ijebu North accused the Secretary to the State Government (SSG), Tokunbo Talabi, and former state legislator, Hon. Joseph Adegbesan, of allegedly masterminding and colluding to change the lists of elected officials after the ward congresses. 

A party source in the local government, who craved anonymity, told our correspondent yesterday that the lists of all the wards, except Ward 7, were changed to suit the fancy of Abiodun's SSG. 

The source said, "From Ward 1 to Ward 11, excluding Ward 7, the lists of excos were changed on the instruction of the SSG. He and Hon. Adegbesan unilaterally produced the excos in Ward 7, Oru, because they hail from the area, and they excluded all the foundation members of APC there. 

"The desperation to impose on the party in our local government is too much. We are surprised by the illegalities going on. As a result, series of meetings are now being held by the political stakeholders in Ijebu North Local Government and we have vowed to fight the injustice meted out to us. Democracy is about consensus building. How can one person determine the excos of all the wards in a local government?"