Osun: Aregbesola boycotts gov poll, aide gives reasons

Rauf Aregbesola, the interior minister, did not vote in the ongoing Osun State governorship election.

It was discovered that Rauf Aregbesola, the former governor of Osun State, had traveled abroad to attend a conference.

Aregbesola avoided the election to prevent a crisis, according to a minister’s assistant.

According to reports, Aregbesola had publicly spoken out against Governor Adegboyega Oyetola’s desire for a second term.

Instead, Aregbesola supported Moshood Adeoti, a former secretary to the state government, who ultimately fell short against Oyetola in the APC governorship primary on February 19.

It was discovered that the minister spent Thursday in Lagos State before departing for Abuja on Friday.

The absence of the minister was confirmed by Aregbesola’s media advisor, Sola Fasure, when contacted.

“He proceeded on an official assignment on Friday,” Fasure said.

The media aide mentioned that Aregbesola was not invited to assist Oyetola’s campaign for reelection in Osun.

He further claimed that the All Progressives Congress had not included the minister in its Osun State campaign team.

He said, “Aregbesola is not in Oshogbo. He is on an official assignment. He was not invited and not a part of the election council. The governor did not also invite him to be part of the campaign.”

The Osun Progressives, an APC subgroup loyal to Rauf Aregbesola, the minister of interior affairs, have spoken out on the Osun State governorship election that will be held on Saturday.

The TOP’s viewpoint was described in a post shared on Friday by Sikiru Ayedun, a former state commissioner.

In spite of the alleged mistreatment of its members by Governor Gboyega Oyetola’s government, the group reaffirmed that it is still a member of the APC.

Prior to this, there have been rumors that TOP might support Ademola Adeleke, the candidate for the Peoples Democratic Party, in the election:

According to reports, there are 15 political parties running for office, and 1,955,657 registered voters will decide the candidates’ fates.

The election would be held in 332 registration areas spread out across the state’s 30 local government units, according to the Independent National Electoral Commission.

Although 15 political parties will be involved in the election, Oyetola of the APC and Adeleke of the PDP are the front-runners.

The two candidates would be meeting for the second time at this point.

In 2018, Oyetola and Adeleke both ran for the position of governor of Osun, which Oyetola ultimately won after a rerun.

Oyetola won seven of the seven units in the rerun election, compared to Adeleke’s single victory.

Oyetola received 255,505 votes at the conclusion of the rerun, compared to 255,023 for the PDP candidate.

Oyetola won with 482 votes following the rerun, despite Adeleke having a 353 vote lead at the end of the first round of voting.

Part of the statement issued by TOP read, “As the Osun Governorship Election comes up tomorrow, we The Osun Progressives have been inundated with calls, questions and demands for our position by the media and our supporters and enthusiasts.

“Fundamentally, we are unabashedly democrats of the progressive hue. We live its credo and our entire being is in it.

“Our association, a caucus within the State of Osun All Progressives Congress, was founded last year when we alarmingly saw the direction our party was going. It was like the falcon could no longer hear the falconer. We were filled with trepidation on the tempest long foretold.

“We were at this junction before, in the run-off to the 2003 General election. We feared that history might tragically repeat itself except we acted selflessly and forthrightly. Like-minded members and leaders of the party, therefore, came together to form the group.

“The administration of our leader, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola, produced a successor in Alhaji Gboyega Oyetola, against all odds, by snatching victory from the jaws of defeat. We worked hard on the mantra of continuity, the continuation of the giant development strides of the Aregbesola administration, which endeared the party to the people of the state, producing the victory that brought Governor Oyetola into office.

“As a caucus within the party, we have consistently made strident efforts at peace and reconciliation within our party. For this, we have only asked for one condition, which is inclusiveness.

“The State Governor and his henchmen, most regrettably, have turned his office and our party into a zero-sum game. You are either with them or against them. They rejected any idea of inclusiveness. They rebuffed all propositions for peace and reconciliation and not even a Councillorship position was ceded to any other section of the party outside of the Ileri-Oluwa caucus.

“Any party member that is not publicly demonstrating obscene loyalty to the governor and attacking Ogbeni Aregbesola or anyone remotely or directly associated with him is branded an enemy and marked for alienation from government and party offices. Worse still, the independent-minded party members not praise singing the Governor are subject to insidious and malevolent attacks.

“The policy of exclusion in Osun APC is so deep that Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola who is the immediate past Governor of the state and the current minister from the state was neither consulted, invited nor included in any party matter, the most recent of which is the APC’s Osun Campaign Council for this election. This posturing has riven the party.

“Nevertheless, we remain unflinching members of our party, the All Progressives Congress and stand by its ideals, irrespective of our travails or even the outcome of tomorrow’s election. We are long-distance runners and will not abandon the ship of our party, in calm or stormy waters.”

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