Congresses: Ogun APC members protest, demand SSG's sack - SALIENT TIMES ONLINE


Wednesday, 29 September 2021

Congresses: Ogun APC members protest, demand SSG's sack

By Aremu Sosanya

The crisis rocking the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Ogun State took another twist on Wednesday as scores of aggrieved members of the party staged a protest, demanding the sack of the Secretary to the State Government (SSG), Tokunbo Talabi, by Governor Dapo Abiodun. 

The protesters, who were APC members from Ijebu North Local Government Area of the state, stormed the Governor's Office in Oke-Mosan, Abeokuta, to register their grievances against the SSG. 

Armed with placards bearing different inscriptions, the party members accused Talabi of undue interference and disruptive manipulation of the recent ward and local government congresses of the APC in their area. 

They alleged that the SSG, who hails from Oru community in Ijebu North, had continued to abuse his position and privileges by orchestrating imposition of candidates on the generality of the leaders and members of the party in the local government. 

Oluwole Ogundipe, who spoke on behalf of the protesters, said APC members drawn from the 11 wards of the local government were dissatisfied with the activities of the SSG. 

Ogundipe said, "We have over 600 APC members here who have represented members from wards 1 to 11 in Ijebu North Local Government. We are here to register our displeasure about the activities of the SSG, Mr Tokunbo Talabi. He has been using his powers to embarrass and harass party members in our local government.

"Look at the ward and local government congresses, we elected our party excos only for us to find out that their names have been changed. We have complained about this ugly development but nothing concrete has been done to address it. Enough is enough. The SSG must leave us alone and allow democracy to thrive in our local government. He and his cohorts should desist from imposing on us. The SSG is not our party leader."

Also, a party stalwart simply identified as Mama Alasho, condemned the imposition allegedly masterminded by the SSG and urged the governor to call him to order. 

Some of the protesters also claimed that suspected sponsored thugs invaded their ward meeting last Sunday and attacked party members with dangerous weapons, injuring some of them in the process. 

They called on Governor Abiodun and the party leadership in the state to allow the elected executives across the wards and local government to be sworn in. 

The Chief of Staff to Governor, Alhaji Shuaib Salisu, and the state Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs, Hon. Afolabi Afuape, addressed the protesters and appealed to them to exercise patience over the crisis. 

They promised to deliver their complaints to the governor upon his return from a foreign trip. 

"I plead with you to exercise patience. Our governor will return by tomorrow or so. All you have said, we will play it for him and he would see. I'm sure if the SSG listened to what you have said, he would surely make necessary amends," Afuape stated.

The protest came a month after APC chieftains from the local government, including a former Deputy Governor of the state, Prince Segun Adesegun, raised the alarm over alleged fraud in the outcome of the party congresses and petitioned the governor to call those behind the manipulation to order.