+Why They Ganged Up Against Him
- All the Intrigues Revealed
As the race for who will be the next PDP Chairman hots up, expectedly, a lot of intrigues have been going on behind the scene. One of it is the recent pronouncement by the PDP South West BoT Chairman, Chief Shuaibu Oyedokun that only 3 aspirants will be allowed to run the race, namely: Chief Bode George, Prof. Tunde Adeniran and Prof. Taoheed Adedoja.
That announcement which came two weeks back ruffled a lot of feathers and the PDP leadership at the National level, sensing the danger in that move, quickly upturned his decision.
To douse tension, the Chairman of PDP Board of Trustees (Bot), Senator Walid Jibrin, over ruled him and said all aspirants from the southern part of the country are free to contest the party’s chairmanship position.
Jibrin quickly summoned Chief Oyedokun over the development and warned all other organs of the party to be careful not to make any one-sided decision.
Jibrin added that the PDP had fought vigorously to remain consistent as it were today and will not accept anything that can drag the party backward.
The National Vice Chairman (South West), Eddy Olafeso also promptly denied the adoption of any aspirant for the post of national chairman, by the leadership in the zone.
Olafeso said none of the candidates vying for the position was barred by the party in the South West. Immediately Oyedokun made the pronouncement, some people began to accuse him of favouritsm, that its because Chief Bode George, Prof. Adeniran and Prof. Adedoja are his friends and all belong to the same age group.
Their are those who feel the pronouncement of Chief Oyedokun was directed at Otunba Gbenga Daniel, one of the chairmanship aspirants, because of his high visibility and that it was part of a grand plan by some influential members of the party to stop Daniel from emerging a strong contender in the race.
There are also those who have linked OGD‘s arch enemy, Senator Buruji Kashamu to the plot to stop Daniel. The allegation is that Kashamu who has not hidden his opposition to OGD is supporting Prof. Adeniran How? He not only attended Adenirans recent declaration, he was said to have donated some branded buses to Adenirans campaign. There are also allegations that he and Shuaib Oyedokun are close.
We hear OGD’s decision to embark on moving round the 36 states to campaign has not gone down well with some older members of the party who feel the campaign for chairmanship ought to have been done the old and and archaic way of just handpicking a candidate and shutting others off. They feel OGD has not only raised the stakes by doing that, he has also changed the old order of doing things. By choosing to go around the country, state by state, zone by zone to openly canvass for support from influential PDP members and powerful friends/stakeholders of the party, he has made the campaign for the national chairmanship a lot more tedious and rigorous. And they felt there was a need to stop him quickly.
It was on Thursday 2nd November, 2017 that Otunba Daniel embarked on this his rigorous nationwide tour of all the 36 state chapters of PDP consulting with leaders and potential delegates, preaching the gospel of internal democracy and returning the party to the people at the grassroots. He has visited very many Northern States like Kano, Sokoto, Minna, Zamfara, Katsina, Jigawa, Kano.
In a letter dated 31st November 2017, he informed the Chairman of the National Caretaker Committee of the party, Senator Ahmed Makarfi, through a letter, saying that he would be going on tour, ahead of the National Convention of the party slated for 9th December, 2017. According to him, “The purpose of the tour is to sensitize the people about the efficacy of our party while also meeting the delegates and Leaders of our Party Nationwide. He said “the tour will commence in Sokoto where we will pay a courtesy call on the Sultan and seize the opportunity to celebrate with him on the 11th anniversary of his coronation.”
After the visit to Sokoto, the campaign train of OGD moved to Gusau in Zamfara State in the morning of Friday, 3rd November and proceed to Katsina in Katsina State in the afternoon of the same day. Daniel, who many have applauded for his ambition, touched down in Kano, Kano State for the campaign in the afternoon of 4th November before berthing in Dutse in Jigawa State in the evening of the same day. Gombe in Yola State played host to the man acclaimed to be the choice of the people in the afternoon of 8th of November before he touched down at Yola in Adamawa State in the evening of the same day.
According to the time table of the accomplished politician, Jalingo in Taraba State was his next port of call on November 9th, while he would be campaigning in Lokoja, Kogi State on 10th November. The campaign time table added that OGD would travel to Minna, Niger State and Kaduna in Kaduna State on November 11, while he would be campaigning in Bauchi, Bauchi State and Jos in Plateau State on 13th November.
OGD, who ruled Ogun State for 8 years, from 2003 to 2015, with enviable achievements, would move his campaign train to Makurdi in Benue State and Lafia in Nassarawa State on the 14th of November, while he would travel to Maiduguri in Borno State and Damaturu Yobe State on 16th November to meet with the party’s faithfuls on why he should be their next National Chairman. The campaign tour continues on 17th November in Birni Kebbi, Kebbi State before starting the Eastern tour on November 21 in Imo State in the morning before moving to Umuahia in Abia State in the afternoon. The tour would continue on 22nd of November in Abakaliki, Ebonyi State in the morning before it would be rounded off in Enugu, Enugu State in the afternoon. OGD would resume the tour in Awka, the capital of Anambra State in the morning of November 23 before moving to Asaba in Delta State in the afternoon of the same day. The campaign train would visit the South-South State of Edo and campaign in Benin in the morning of November 24 before moving to Akure in Ondo State in the afternoon of the same day.
OGD would round off the campaign with a visit to the South West State of Ekiti in Ado Ekiti in the morning of 25th November before the campaign would hold in another South West State of Osun in Osogbo in the afternoon of the same day. Ibadan, the capital of Oyo State would host the campaign team of the man of the people on 26th November before the team would proceed to Lagos, the centre of excellence on November 27, while Ilorin in Kwara State would be the base for the campaign of the versatile politician and engineer on the 29th of November. The time table stated further that OGD and his campaign train would proceed to Yenagoa in Bayelsa State and Port Harcourt in Rivers State on November 30 before travelling to Uyo in Akwa Ibom State on December 1.
Also, Calabar in Cross River State would play host to OGD and his team on 2nd December, while the campaign of the cerebral politician would be rounded off in Abeokuta, the capital of Ogun State, his home state with a rally on Sunday, December 3rd.
Speaking during his official declaration for the position in Abuja on Wednesday 18th October, OGD, had told the gathering, which comprises mainly politicians and journalists that his ultimate goal was to work towards the victory of the party in the 2019 general elections and in all other elections in between. “To achieve this, I am prepared to work with all leaders of our party, various interest groups and individuals.
“In the last few weeks, I have gone round visiting many of our leaders and stakeholders. I believe that I have sufficiently interacted with many of our party leaders, elders and members to have identified various fault lines which needed closing up so that we can return to the ideals and vision of our founding fathers.
OGD hasvisited the likes of Gen. TY Danjuma (rtd.), former head of state, Gen. Ibrahim Babangida (rtd.), ex-governor of Kano State, Alhaji Ibrahim Shekarau, and former head of state, Gen. Abdulsalam Abubakar.
Other people that OGD has consulted on his ambition included a former governor of Katsina State, Ibrahim Shema and former president Olusegun Obasanjo amongst several others.
Many groups have come out to criticise Oyedokun‘s pronouncement.
One of such groups advised the leadership of the PDP to disregard any shortlisted candidates for the chairmanship position of the party as such would be injurious to the development of the party, and alien to the constitution of the party, and ultimately deny vibrant younger elements in the party opportunity to contribute meaningfully.
The warning was given by a Yoruba self-determination group. The Federation Of Yoruba Group.
The group lambasted Oyedokun for presenting what it described as an illegal and ill-advised pruned list of aspirants, contesting for chairmanship of PDP. The group said: “Having read the PDP constitution, we can not find a clause of regional board of trustees of any kind inserted and with such power. We therefore, call on all members of PDP to condemn this shortlisted names, which originated from men of old ideas, who cannot move the party forward at this material time. “.
They also said members of the Board of Trustees are biased, as some of those contesting are also members of the Board of Trustees, while insisting that such members of the party BOT, who are willing to contest, must resign from the board.
The group called on the leadership of PDP to caution the old men not to take the party back to its dark days of destruction.
The group affirmed its support for Daniel’s chairmanship ambition and suggested that PDP should this time around consider younger elements like him, who would bring fresh ideas and direction to the party.
According to the group “ Otunba Gbenga Daniel is the only man among them all who possesses the qualities to steer the leadership of the party and bring forth all that the party needs to truly act as opposition party that could win the forthcoming general elections. He is not only young but also bold to face any condition.
Since the race started, OGD has topped the list of aspirants. He has many things going for him. As an Engineer, he is blessed with an analytic mind, and has a way of subjecting everything to SWOT Analysis most times. He has age on his side. He is younger than the 3 older party topshots in the race.
Part of what is working for OGD is that of all those contesting, he is the only one who has contested and won elections before, not only once, but twice. Two, he has supervised elections severally and none of the others have. Three, the fact that he comes from a private/business background into public life.
He has made several friends along the line in his business line and can reach out to tap from there as well as in public relationship where he has had priviledge of building large followers and loyalists. Most others have been mainly government/public life, except Chief Raymond Dokpesi who also has a very robust private sector life, but no public life. He is also the youngest despite being 61. The age difference between him and the closest is 5 years.