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The crisis rocking the Oyo state People’s Democratic Party took another dangerous dimensions on Wednesday, 22nd of September 2021, as aggrieved members passed vote of no confidence on the Governor, Engineer Seyi Makinde over the ways he’s been handling party affairs in the state. Not satisfied with that, members also sent a strongly worded letter to the National headquarters of the party venting their anger while intimating the party hierarchy of the internal bickering threatening to tear the party apart in the state.
Members passing vote of no confidence on their Governor is an unusual political exercise. At least in a volatile political atmosphere in Nigeria. But when such happens as it is the case in Oyo, it presents another experiment for political scholars to study. Although, I think members telling their Governor of his ineptitude represents the height of political courage. In other clime, it is quite impossible. When asked what makes Oyo politics unique and interesting, here is a bright example. And maybe because politicians from Oyo extraction understand that the powerful are not as powerful as we think they are. Think of Senator Ladoja and Alao Akala. The recent example which should interests and bothers the ruling PDP and particularly the Governor is that of Senator Abiola Ajimobi whose party, after eight solid years in power lost out in power play due to seemingly irreconcilable intra party conflict.
And it is surprising PDP is watching helplessly as this costly mistake is about to repeat itself. In a way, party politics is about managing and massaging people’s egos. It’s about being deft in balancing various interests without ruffling feathers. That rare ability to manage disparate interests and expectations is what make a creative politician. Failure of which cost huge blow to the party. You might ask why intra party tide has always been hard to stem? The answer it turns out, boils down to the kind of leadership piloting the affairs of the party.
“From that time till now”, the party writes its National Headquarters “Engr. Seyi Makinde has persistently denied members of the PDP who toiled day and night to work for this party’s success at the polls of their rights, pauperized them, embarrassed them, diminished them in the true sense of the word, discriminating against them and even harassed them”.
This group, its further says, consisting of very consistent PDP members who had always remained within the party (PDP) and worked for the success of the party emerged as a product of necessity, not only protect those people from the excesses of the governor but also to prevent situation where the PDP Oyo State may go into oblivion the unlikely event that Engr. Seyi Makinde takes French leave of the party (PDP) as he had done least twice or thrice in the past. Here are five ways Governor Seyi Makinde can amicably resolve this party minor issue which is already turning into a sore thumb.
1) Stop thinking the aggrieved members are inconsequential: In 2019 elections, Senator Abiola Ajimobi had the stiffest battle of his political life. His party, APC lost the Governorship because of internal party supremacy battle. It was an epic battle between the unity forum and Senator Abiola Ajimobi campaign organization (SENACO). Oyo PDP reaped the misunderstanding of that time to claim victory in that election. Had APC remained one, it’s unlikely for the PDP to rule the affairs of the state today.
2) Extend olive branch to aggrieved members: There is only one to end this political fiasco: extend olive branch to aggrieved members. By doing this, angry members will feel a sense of belonging and team up with the Governor in his quest to change the face of governance in the state.
3) Invite leaders of the aggrieved group to a round table meeting: This may be tough but it has a long way to go in settling the whole squabble once and for all. Invited leaders must be treated with utmost respect while they are allow to state their displeasure. The Governor can therefore address these grey areas and allow the sleeping dog to lie.
4) Stop ongoing Media war: It’s ridiculous PDP in Oyo is caught between the rock and the hard place after winning Governorship election in 2019. These ongoing drama further shows that winning election may not be as tough as managing the spoils of electoral victory. If this current level of Media war is sustained till next election, the underrated David may surprising the giant Goliath on the field of play.
5) Show commitment towards ending this bickering: Nobody want to work for nothing. The aggrieved PDP members have their reasons for fighting the Governor and members of his political faction. Unless a serious political commitment is made to assuage their feelings, the party may end up facing next election with a divided house. And as the saying, a house divided against itself cannot stand. A word is enough for the wise.
OYO101, Muftau Gbadegesin’s opinion on issues affecting Oyo State, is published on Saturdays. He can be reached via email@example.com and 09065176850.