Osun 2022: How Ekiti’s Gubernatorial Election and Party Primaries Affect Race

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Emerging factors seem to be tempering previous narratives about how the Osun gubernatorial race is turning out, especially the outcome of the June 18, 2022 gubernatorial election in Ekiti state, which was won by the All-American Congress candidate. Progressives (APC), Abiodun Oyebanji.

The emergence of former Lagos State Governor Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu as the APC presidential candidate has boosted Governor Gboyega Oyetola’s confidence. The party is expected to reap from it.

Again, the new vote-buying strategy adopted by the parties in Ekiti, of which the ruling APC had an advantage due to its superior financial power, may also reduce the impact of the Labor Party and the Agreement Party to mere underdogs in the coming osun poll. .

Observers now say that instead of the initially projected four-horse race, the contest will actually be between the incumbent governor and Senator Ademola Adeleke. Both parties have demonstrated organized political structures and financial resources to carry out elections.

If the electoral arbiter and other transparency watchdogs fall asleep on vote buying, Ekiti could be child’s play, as APC will do its best to use resources to secure a second term for the incumbent. The APC also has the advantage of federal support. The People’s Democratic Party (PDP) candidate had said that he was ready to match naira for naira and dollar for dollar, if necessary to win the race.

Tinubu’s particular involvement in Osun is due to more than one reason. The national leader would need to secure Osun before next year’s presidential election. The ex-governor of Lagos will also put everything into Osun to secure his ego. For example, the Labor Party’s gubernatorial candidate, Lasun Yussuff, and Osun’s immediate former governor, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola, have not given up their desire to see Oyetola bite the dust. The two formidable leaders in the state have made no secret of their disdain for Oyetola and the way he sidelined them in Osun APC affairs.

The poor performance of the Accord Party and LP in the Ekiti gubernatorial elections is not encouraging for their Osun chapters. There is not much on the ground in Osun to suggest that the two parties will fare better in the upcoming elections.

The fact that the PDP also came a distant third in the Ekiti elections is not a good sign for the Osun chapter, although the dynamic that played out on June 18 may not work in Osun, given the great experience of the PDP in the state. The infighting in Osun PDP is also not as destructive as the one in Ekiti, where the former governor Ayo Fayose saw himself as the Alpha and Omega of Ekiti PDP, which was the main reason the party performed woefully in the condition.

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The crisis that split Ekiti PDP in two when former governor Segun Oni angrily left the party to elect the Social Democratic Party (SDP) is also visible in the Osun chapter where Dr. Akin Ogunbiyi also angrily left the PDP to become candidate. of the Agreement Party. It is hoped that Ekiti’s lessons have now dawned on all of them, that running away to form small cells only helps diminish their ability to win and be part of a winning party.

The only winning formula for the smaller matches is to line up and take advantage of the bigger matches. But this may be difficult to achieve because the former vice president and Labor Party candidate recently said that if there is going to be an alliance, he must be the candidate.

Newslodge has learned that the APC faction headed by current Home Minister Ogbeni Aregbesola is angry that its director’s name was deliberately excluded from the Osun Governorate Campaign Council. A reliable source in the field said: “I can’t say yet if we are going to be fully committed to Oyetola because as we speak, Aregbesola’s name was obviously left out of the campaign council for no reason.”

Some skeptics said what has kept the former vice president going is his conviction that aggrieved APC groups would join him in wresting power from Oyetola, especially those who say the governor is unnecessarily stingy with funds. Like last week, the Aregbesola camp seemed more willing to side with Adeleke than Yussuff.

For example, a former Local Government and Chiefdom Affairs Commissioner, Kolapo Alimi, who served under Aregbesola, recently defected to the PDP rather than join the former vice president.

Both the LP and the Agreement Party, as things stand, do not seem to have many possibilities in terms of structure, logistics and financing, which the ruling party and the PDP can boast of.

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Geopolitical strength is something Oyetola and Yussuff have to demonstrate at Osun Central, where they are both from. If Yussuf were strong here, Oyetola would have to fight for votes in the district.

Nothing as of now shows that Yussuff is going to be a pushover here, aside from the fact that his platform is new and weak. It’s up to the governor to capitalize on that, while Yussuff could market his name recognition to voters.

Yussuff has not been seen organizing open campaigns statewide. In fact, he doesn’t have many campaign billboards across the state and doesn’t have many supporters speaking for him, compared to his counterparts.

He is heard most on radio shows outlining his policies and programs. Some have wondered why his campaign is so cold, as if he has an agenda to play spoiler.

But Yussuff, while reacting, denied any plans to drop any candidate.
SENATOR Adeleke could take advantage of his Osun West district, where the electorate insists on producing the next governor. They said that aside from the late Senator Isiaka Adeleke, no other governor had come from the district.

Aregbesola is from Osun East, other previous governors including Prince Olagunsoye Oyinlola, Chief Bisi Akande and Oyetola are from Osun Central. Adeleke would have had a smooth ride in the district had it not been for Ogunbiyi’s defection from the PDP to Accord.

There is a reprieve for the governor, as far as geopolitical mapping is concerned. Senator Iyiola Omisore, the current APC National Secretary is from Osun East. Omisore is tasked with making the governor survive, as he did with his massive vote in the last election, if only he can reduce Aregbesola to the measure and return the governor’s support that allowed him (Omisore) to become secretary. national.

Possible realignment and new alliances

There has been a flurry of defections from and to the APC, PDP and Accord Party.
Aregbesola loyalists are moving into the Osun PDP. His defection followed the series of protests that followed the controversial APC National Assembly and state primaries, where the National Work Committee (NWC) led by Senator Abdulahi Adamu has yet to release the results of winners and losers, to despite public outcry and protests from applicants. and other party members.

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For example, many APC members have defected to the PDP in notable places such as Osogbo state local governments, Olorunda, Iwo, Egbedore, Ede, Ila, Irepodun, Ife Central and Ife East.

Alimi and his followers, numbering more than 2,000, defected to the PDP. Alimi served as a commissioner under the Aregbesola administration and is secretary of The Osun Progressives (TOP), an APC faction loyal to Aregbesola and fighting for party restructuring. He was one of the lawyers who defended Governor Oyetola when he was questioned about the 2018 gubernatorial elections.

The PDP is not exempt from the gale of defections as more than 500 members of the main opposition moved into the APC in the Boripe Local Government Area of ​​the state when the Oyetola campaign train visited the Boripe Local Government Area.

In the same vein, another PDP leader, Chief Sakariyau Oyediji, recently led more than 1,000 of his supporters to join Accord.

In this context of defections, there are chances that this will increase the chances of parties and candidates, while others may not have much electoral impact.

Speaking about the defections, the Director General of the Oyetola Campaign Council, Senator Ajibola Bashiru, and the Governor’s Special Adviser on Political Affairs, Hon. Sunday Akere, said APC was not losing sleep over the exodus of APC members to the PDP.

They said that the action of the defectors, especially Kolapo Alimi, is inconsequential and will not have any effect on APC in the elections.

On security, the PDP, LP and Accord Party have expressed concern that the ruling government is displaying unbridled desperation to retain power at all costs.

Adeleke Campaign Organization Media Committee Chairman Prince Diran Odeyemi said his director’s main fear is not vote-buying but security.

He pointed to cases where billboards and campaign posters of opposition candidates and Adeleke are being destroyed every day, claiming that APC would destroy some of his campaign materials as a justification for mass destruction of those belonging to other parties. “We have made several reports but the security personnel are not doing anything.”

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