By Uche Mbah
An epic battle is now set between the Ebora of Owu, Olusegun Obasanjo; the All Progressives Congress, APC national leader, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, and the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, leadership. Come September 22, 2018, Osun people will be electing a new Governor. Chances are that the main contenders within the party are Ishiaka Gboyega Oyetola, Tinubu’s Cousin and the APC candidate; Ademola Adeleke, a Senator standing for PDP, and Fatai Akinade Akinbade, former PDP Osun state Party Chairman contesting under African Democratic Party, ADC. ADC wa the brainchild of former Presient Obasanjo in his quest to send the incumbent President, Muhammadu Buhari, packing from Aso Rock.
Oyetola’s emergence as the flag bearer of the APC was fraught with protests and grumblings within the party. There were allegations of impositions, that his election was more of a selection , and that it was more of an endorsement that anything else-an allegation that the state leadership expectedly denies. It was gathered that mumbling are still going on due to those who felt shortchanged by the election.
Senator Adeleke emerged as the PDP flag-bearer, while the third runner up was Fatai Akinbade. Akinbade believed he was the preferred candidate but that he was being discriminated against within the party. On the advice of his former boss and the leader of ADC in Osun, former governor Olagunsoye Oyinola, he decamped from the PDP to the ADC. Meanwhile, a former secretary to the Osun state government, Kazeem Adio, has already won the nomination for the governorship candidacy, and had his name already submitted to the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, as the ADC flag bearer. but he needed little persuasion to voluntary relinquish the position to Akinbade. Now Akinbade is the flag bearer, with Justice Folahanmi Oloyide as running mate. Oloyide was retired as a high court judge by the National Judicial Commission in controversial circumstances, though many see her as a courageous Judge who was able to stand up to erring authority. But Adeleke has been having a running battle with the courts over his academic qualifications, that he has no school leaving certificate. An uncle to the ace musician Davido, he shot into prominence in the social media when he won the senatorial election and danced his heart out.
Indications are that former president Obasanjo wants to use the Osun election for popularity test for his new party, ADC. Recently, Obasanjo confirmed his readmission back to the PDP. He has been a close associate of Olagunsoye Oyinola, who is alleged to be his eyes in the Osun election.With Adeleke’s certificate controversy recently settled by the courts, the PDP, according to the National leadership, are now prepared to meet fire for fire in the elections. And Tinubu has federal might-and deep pockets-in his favor.
The coming days promises to be interesting.