• The Race for the Federal House of Representatives thickens
  • HKT And Matin Set For Showdown Amidst Party Wrangling
  • APC Needs All Caucuses To Work Together For Victory
  • Chairmanship And Commissionership Under Threat In APC

THE Race for the coveted diadem of who will enter the House of Representatives to effectively represent the good people of Ajeromi-Ifelodun Federal Constituency began long ago with hues and cries coming from all parties. The intrigues that culminated in the presentation of candidates for the House of Representatives at the tail end could have best been imagined rather than seen and witnessed by even children, thereby painting a bad image for the world of politics in Ajegunle.

For the APC, three strong contenders were in the hunt for the seat, but, at the end, Hon. Kolawole Musbau Taiwo (HKT) got the mandate of the Party to be their candidate. Needless to say that the word ‘strong contenders’ used in this context aside HKT referred to Hon. Kalejaiye Adeboye Paul (KAP) and Hon. Kamal Ayinde Bayewu – two good friends turned political adversaries with a powerful caucus behind them, yet in the same party but with separate philosophies. We have always and will still posit that two of them working together as a team can win any election in this clime. But no, they instead prefer to build their own individual dynasty.

While Kamal holds sway with his BACO group, KAP controls the KAP Vanguard and their recent expansion by means of allegiance with other strong caucuses within the party, had made them seem larger than life and if you use the word. ‘Powerful’ you might not be far from the truth. Now lests leave that for now.

When we took up the Common Man, (nah so we dey call Oga Jim Suleman, the godfather of Community journalism for this our hood and infact the whole of Badagry division) on his choice of the three candidates, his view was rather on the defensive because they are all his friends and as such, he can’t stick out his neck for any of them until a candidate eventually emerged.

In the winds was Hon. Iwonlawe Matin Owodunni, who defected to Accord Party because he felt APC did not stay true to their words to allow him gun for a seat at the Green Chamber after series of attempts since 2011.

“I waited, but to my greatest surprise in 2018 leading to the 2019 elections when I came out, I found out that things had changed. One thing about me is that I always take people by their words based on the kind of person I am,” Hon. Matin stated this in an interview we had with him recently.

“But to cut the long story short, I believe this is my time and the people in the community are behind me and they clamoured for me to run. They stressed that if ‘am not coming out, then they are not voting stating that they are going to return Rita,” he submitted.

Talking about Hon. Rita Orji of the PDP, who happen to be the incumbent, things have not been rosy either but, she has been waxing stronger and she is ready to once again, give the APC another run for their money.

However, in her quest for power she succeeded in dividing the PDP along ethnic lines and took up the position of the number one member of the party by installing candidates. Her altercation with the Party Chairman, Baba Ogunrinde left a big hole in the party which if capitalized upon by the oppositions can yield positive fruits for them. But the question is, can they actually capitalize on it?

Hon. Rita Orji worked underground to have some people decamp from the APC to the PDP. Some political scholars would rather play down that move as compared to that the APC played in bringing into the APC titans like Rita’s godfather, Prince Kola Balogun and indefatigable lawyer, Barrister Ahmed Musa amongst others.

Hon. Rita’s imbroglio with a strong aspirant of the PDP, Hon. Dr. Emilia Ezeude was one that shook the party to its foundation here in Ajeromi-Ifelodun. Emilia who was seen as a worthy replacement for Rita, was rather made to run for the Lagos State House of Assembly seat which Rita also denied her and instead gave it to Oliver Abba, thereby, single-handedly picking all candidates herself. This coming from a candidate to another is rather unheard of.

Feelers we are now getting is that the Baba Ogunrinde faction of the PDP had only set out to work for Alhaji Atiku Abubakar and Jimi Agbaje. So the question now is, come February 16, 2019, who are they going to vote for to speak for the people in the Federal House of Representatives?

Nevertheless, it is also not too rosy for the APC whose two top contenders that went into the race with HKT are rumoured not to give it their 100%, but, there are baits on the cards.

Some caucus members we spoke to under anonymity, vowed not to work for HKT because their boss did not make it. While some stated unequivocally that HKT would have to pay them if he wants them to work for him, others said they would only wait for orders from their boss.

During the rallies held recently, Hon. Kamal Ayinde Bayewu and Hon. Kalejaiye Adeboye Paul were visibly seen campaigning for HKT. The two local government chairmen were also not left out. Is that a sign of good things to come for the APC?

The peaceful moves made by the APC to Alayabiagba to appease the Alalubarika boys is another pointer to the fact that the APC means business, but, Rita is also capitalizing on that by also going to the same set of people to entice and convince them on the need to vote for her, so?

That song…APC yi ti gbogbo wan i, ko ma gbo do baje… should always be ringing a bell in the head of all APC members and their sympathizers because, victory can only be achieved in unity.

It was also rumoured that the Jagaban himself, Bola Ahmed Tinubu have asked all local government chairmen to resign if they lose this election. That is the bait; lose and get fired and better still, forget about commissionership?

Talking about commissionership, we have two political bigwigs who are also interested, but only one of them might get it; and getting it means they have to work ‘very hard’ to ensure HKT grabs the ticket to the Green Chamber.

So, the question now is, are the leaders of the APC going into the election for personal reasons to keep their jobs and move higher on the political cadre? Or are they voting because they love HKT?

IN 2015, Ajegunle did not vote as a community thereby losing the Speakership of the Lagos State House of Assembly which HKT would have gotten. Yet again we ask, are they ready to vote as a community now and compensate the man they betrayed in 2015?

The answer my friend is blowing in the winds and by February 17, 2019, the picture would have been clearer.