Leaders and stakeholders of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Oyo State have been advised to give peace a chance within the fold of the party following Tuesday’s meeting between the leadership of the party and the Senator Bukola Saraki-led PDP National Reconciliation and Strategy Committee.
Special Adviser on Strategy and Political Matters to Governor ‘Seyi Makinde, Hon. Babatunde Oduyoye, who gave this advice on Wednesday, stated that the path for peace and continued success of the ruling party in the state had been charted with the successful conciliatory meeting.
Oduyoye, in a statement made available to newsmen in Ibadan, said that the advice became imperative following a statement credited to a chieftain of the party, who alleged that the governor cannot be trusted on his readiness to reconcile.
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He urged those with misgivings on the peace process should give the governor the benefit of the doubt.
Oduyoye, who commended Governor Makinde and all aggrieved stakeholders for choosing the option of peace-building in the interest of the party and its members, noted that everyone at the Tuesday meeting held inside the Government House saw the imperative for peace and unity within the PDP in Oyo State.
According to him the stakeholders should no longer fan the embers of discord but should seek to expand the frontiers of peace and unity.
He added that “the commitment made by Governor Makinde at the meeting was clear: that everyone should put the past behind them in the interest of the PDP and the future of the party; that he would reach out to all aggrieved parties within a short time and inform the Saraki committee of the outcome of his interactions with the stakeholders.
“It is my considered view that the Governor should be allowed to execute this plan that he already mapped out to bring an end to the crisis.
The peace-building does not require incitement, display of anger, resort to insults or name-calling. Rather, it demands give and take, open mind and single-minded focus on growth of the party. “
He equally counselled all parties to desist from “doing and saying things” that could further worsen the crisis, while admonishing PDP stakeholders to sheathe their swords, noting that “it behooves on every stakeholder to demonstrate confidence in the peace process already initiated.”
He added: “Stakeholders in the Oyo State PDP, under the leadership of Governor ‘Seyi Makinde, met on Tuesday at the Government House, Agodi, Ibadan.
“The meeting was at the instance of the PDP National Reconciliation and Strategy Committee under the leadership of the former Senate President, Dr. Bukola Saraki and the meeting was successful in that all stakeholders including those aggrieved aired their views on the situation in the party and the way forward.
“The governor had also made it clear that he bears no personal grudge with anyone and that going forward, everyone must put the grievances behind them and come together to build the PDP into a great and united party that will continue to win elections in the state.
“The take-home from the meeting is that there is a commitment to peace and unity from the governor and all stakeholders and it becomes important that all parties must follow that commitment through in order to get the desired result of peace and unity in the interest of the party.
“Therefore, I urge all stakeholders to desist from doing and saying things that can threaten the commitment to peace, because in the end, as the governor and all the members of the reconciliation committee rightly pointed out, the interest of the party should be the most important consideration.
“So, it is imperative that all sides bury the hatchets and avoid words and actions that can further worsen the crisis in the party.”