Last night, former Governor Adebayo Alao-Akala had an interactive session with a select group of journalists at his Bodija, Ibadan residence on the raging controversy concerning today’s governorship primary in the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC). Pacesetter News was there…
Q: Your Excellency Sir, is it true you are likely to boycott tomorrow’s (today) APC governorship primary?
That’s true, I said so. I have given the details in my release. You all know me that I am not somebody anybody can put aside. With due respect to other contestants, I am not an ordinary politician in this Oyo state. When it comes to the politics of Oyo state, nobody can rubbish me.
And we are trying to give each other’s respect but when you think that somebody is trying to rubbish you, you must try and fight for your right and that’s exactly what I have just done.
Q: But we learnt you (Governorship aspirants) subscribed to indirect primary to pick the candidate... (Cuts in)
He has a right to do what he is trying to do. Don’t forget you journalists, the whole of South West Nigeria is doing direct primary. Why is it that it is only in Oyo state that we are doing indirect primary? Is that right? Is that correct. And after that one, we agreed that he should let us go to the field for his preferred indirect primary yet he is now calling people one by one, telling them what to do. Is that politics? After our party has lost two state house of assembly members to the Labour and PDP, because two people died, we went to the poll, PDP won one and Labour won the other. The party is going down in popularity and yet he believes he can do it alone. Is that the way to build the party?
Q: Don’t you forsee this development when you were throwing your hat into the ring?
No, I thought people would be reasonable enough to know what is going on about Oyo state politics and Nigeria’s politics. Is that how to do things. Is that how to go about things? We are not stupid when he started calling people bla bla bla… The people he called and sent messages that those who had left the party, because of the last purported congresses, should come back, is that the way they will come back? is that the way to run the party? Is the party not doomed in Oyo state. It is annoying.
Q: You alleged in the press release that the Governor has settled for Joseph Tegbe?
Yes. The person that he is trying to put forward, when did he join the party? When did he become a politician? What has he done for the people of Oyo state. What is his manifesto? What has he done for the people of Oyo state and where is he coming from? We are not saying he is not legible but you have to start from somewhere even him, Governor Abiola Ajimobi as the incumbent Governor of the state, he started from somewhere. That’s what we are saying.
Q: Why are you into the race Sir?
I am putting up myself for this position for some reasons though it is not a do or die affair. My entry into the race is a plus for the party. It is just for the party to win. I am giving myself up for better services. And do I need any introduction in this Oyo state politics? Do I need to tell any electorate what I am going to do if elected as Governor? Haven’t I done it before? Who don’t know my pedigree in this state? All the people in this state know who Akala is. You are now calling people one by one; you are being clever by half. Is that politics? When you call people for a meeting, you talk talk and talk. You speak the whole day and you would not allow other people to speak. Is that the way to run politics? You journalists should have questioned why is it in Oyo state alone that we are having indirect primary? Even in Lagos that we have political turbulence there, they are not asking for indirect there. We are not fools. And we know what to do. We know how to go about.
Q: We are aware you are substantially close to the national leader of the party, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, did you talk to him about the developments in Oyo?
Politics is local. We are all grown up enough and we should know how to solve our problems.
Q: What next move are you going to explore?
God will show us the way.
I have given directives to my supporters to stay away from the primary. I have given them the directives and they are going to obey it. Even you as journalists, do you know the venue of the congress and this is less than 24 hours to the event? Why the secrecy even if you as journalists you don’t know where you are going to cover the primary tomorro, is that not annoying? Something that is supposed to be open. Is that the way to run a party. Did you see anywhere that we did the Presidential primary yesterday (Friday)? Something that the whole of the country did. We are all supporting Buhari, where did you see any primary for the President in Oyo state? No documentary. No media report about Buhari’s primary here unlike in other States. Every other place had primary for Buhari but we didn’t have anything here. And people cannot talk because they are afraid to talk.
Q: Did you talk to him (the governor) in person concerning your grievance?
I spent three hours with him yesterday
Q: And what was his response?
His response was the summary of what we have put down for you in the press release. Thank you…
SAVE OYO APC FROM IMMINENT COLLAPSE
ALAO-AKALA WARNS PARTY LEADERSHIP
1. Former Governor of Oyo state and Gubernatorial aspirant on the platform of the All Progressives Congress in the State Otunba Adebayo Alao-Akala has called on the National Leadership of the Party, President Mohammadu Buhari and other Leaders of the party to come to the aid of the Oyo state chapter of the All Progressives Congress which is on the brink of collapse due to the high-handedness and Imposition of candidate on delegates who will vote at the Primary Election of the party taking place tomorrow by Gov. Abiola Ajimobi.
2. Otunba Adebayo Alao-Akala wishes to state categorically and put the leadership of the party and the General Public on Notice that Governor Abiola Ajimobi has perfected plans to Impose one Joseph Olasunkanmi Tegbe on delegates as he has sent his foot soldiers around to coerce and Intimidate delegates to vote for the said Tegbe tomorrow at the party primaries against their free will.
3. His Excellency, Otunba Adebayo Alao-Akala, a true party man and committed loyalist to any cause he believes in wishes to state categorically that he is not a push over in the game of Politics and as a well grounded and groomed politician who has occupied the number one seat of a Politically conscious state as Oyo state will not be part of any move or attempt to subvert the true will and wish of the people by the selfish interest of an Individual.
4. The General Public should also note that Gov. Abiola Ajimobi has clandestinely offered Otunba Adebayo Alao-Akala the Ministerial slot of Oyo state in an attempt to pitch him against Barr. Adebayo Shittu, an offer he has rejected in it’s entirety as he is not one to be tailored or shown the way round in the game of Politics.
5. His Excellency, Otunba Adebayo Alao-Akala has therefore decided to “STAY AWAY” from tomorrow’s macabre dance taking place at a yet to be disclosed venue due to the Insensitivity and selfishness of Gov. Abiola Ajimobi who is hellbent on Imposing his stooge as his successor.
6. In view of the above, His Excellency has also directed that all his teeming supporters, well wishers and party faithfuls who believe in him should stay away from the sham taking place tomorrow and await further directives.
New Media and Public Affairs,
ALAO-AKALA Campaign Organisation.
Ibadan, Oyo State Nigeria.