How APC is undermining APC in Kwara

Abdulrasaq

By SUPO ATOBATELE

Yet again, Kwara is in the news for the wrong reason: Why would a

ruling party be so determined to do itself in? The foreboding story

from Kwara is the stuff of Greek tragedy, complete with all its

thespian trappings!

 

From Otege (enough is enough) to Otunya(let’s start again), the battle

for the soul of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Kwara has

started in earnest.

 

It is ironic that barely two years in office, Gov. Abdulrahman

Abdulrazaq is again on the frontlines, but this time, he is now ranged

against the rainbow coalition of party leaders which ushered him into

power.

 

How did this party which rode to Government House on such phenomenal

goodwill come to this pass? The answer may well lie in the inimitable

“aloof ” governance style of this poker-faced scion of the AbdulRazaq

family of Ilorin.

 

To be sure, many of the now estranged party leaders, who literarily

‘rail roaded’ the governor into Government House as against other

formidable aspirants, would be gnashing their teeth while questioning

their sense of judgment.

 

Now the chickens have come home to roost and AbdulRazaq with his

collaborators in the national executive of the APC have sacked the

party’s caretaker chairman in the state, Bashir Omolaja Bolarinwa,

fondly called BOB.

 

AbdulRazaq, who was a fringe player in the politics of the state

before 2015, has now become the face of the APC, courtesy of the

cavalier politics of the Mai Mala Buni leadership of the party in

Abuja.

 

Many, with the benefit of hindsight, have now come to the disturbing

realisation that the man around whom was woven the Otoge Movement is

not a party man. ” We saw it coming” many an analyst would say!

 

From little infractions, laid back snobbery and diffident

indifference, AbdulRazaq was from his first day in office determined

to be his own man rather than an affable party man.

 

Many would recall that aggrieved members of the Otoge movement had

often described the AbdulRazaq government as a ” one-man

administration.”

 

They often cite the December 2019 constitution of the governor’s

cabinet which they said did not have the input of party leaders such

as Information and Culture Minister, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, his

Transportation counterpart, Gbemi Saraki, Akogun Iyiola Oyedepo,

Alhaji LAK Jimoh, Chief Rex Olawoye, and stormy petrel of Kwara

politics, Musbau Esinrogunjo, among others.

 

Esinrogunjo, one of the most passionate foot soldiers of the Otoge

revolution, would later be arrested for allegedly threatening to kill

the governor in a viral video!

 

That the groundswell of animosity against the governor runs deep is

exemplified by the recent visit of leading lights of the party in the

state to the national secretariat of the APC in Abuja over the

whimsical removal of BOB, ostensibly on the grounds that the governor

was not comfortable working with him!

 

On the eminent delegation list were Prof. Oba Abdulraheem, a former

Vice Chancellor of the University of Ilorin, as well as Iyiola

Oyedepo, one of the quartet that launched the blistering radio

campaign that saw the exit of the Abdulfatah Ahmed administration and

precipitated the fall of the Saraki dynasty.

 

If the national executive of the APC has continued to dilly dally over

its gross violation of its own constitution, it is only an indication

of its withering contempt for the visiting distinguished Kwarans and

indeed thousands of law abiding party faithful in the state whose case

they came to present in Abuja.

 

It is, however, instructive that opposition voices to this tactless

removal of only Bolarinwa among the 36 leaders of chapters of the

party are getting louder and the battle line has clearly been drawn.

 

Asked at a public forum last week what the APC leaders in the state

were doing to resolve the impasse, Oyedepo said: ” When we get to the

bridge, we will know how to cross it, but the decision to remove our

chairman shall never work.

 

“…Gbemi (Saraki) and Lai (Mohammed) , they are with us, they are

fully with us. They are not with the governor. ”

 

For AbdulRazaq, who emerged as governor on a shakey political

structure, his battles on so many fronts may yet prove costly.

 

Many of his disappointed admirers say the governor has surrounded

himself with too many fair weather politicians who tell him only what

he wants to hear as opposed to the political realities on the ground.

 

They indeed readily cite the Ilorin-born journalist turned lawyer and

politician, Kunle Suleiman, whose sole political credential is being a

member of the PDP at formation in the state.

 

Also in the narrow circle of advisers is the shifty Senator Suleiman

Ajadi who was handed the Kwara South Senatorial District seat on a

platter of gold at the height of the Saraki’s suzerainty in Kwara.

 

Today, the duo are the King’s Horsemen defining the party’s blurred

political direction in the state and pouring invectives on respected

party elders who are battling to stem the drift into the abyss.

 

How long this drama of the absurd would last remains to be seen in the

coming weeks.

 

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