Funmi Olaitan, Ibadan
An appeal has gone to aggrieved members of All Progressives Congress (APC) in Oyo State, under the aegis of Unity Forum, to rescind their decision to dump the party and allow for reconciliation in the overriding interest of the party.
Chairman of the party in the state, Mr Akin Oke, made the appeal on Thursday, while inaugurating the 35-member state executive committee of the APC, at the state party secretariat, Oke-Ado, Ibadan.
He said rather than join another political party where they would be treated as newcomers, the aggrieved members should team up with APC mainstream to build the party and put it in a good stead ahead of 2019 general elections.
It would be recalled that the aggrieved members have mulled defection to another party after the inauguration of Oke on Monday, as the state chairman by National Chairman of the party, Mr John Odigie-Oyegun, at the party’s national secretariat in Abuja.
Unity Forum, in a statement issued on Wednesday, by its Public Relations Officer (PRO), Mr. Olawale Sadare, said the aggrieved members were open for negotiations with other political parties in the country except Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
But Oke reiterated that since the party was jointly built to attain victory in the two previous general elections, the aggrieved members should reconsider their stand and not allow anything to put the chances of the party in jeopardy.
The chairman added that the party would swing into action to reconcile the aggrieved members and bring them back to the mainstream.
He said, “As directed by the leader of the party in Oyo State, Governor Abiola Ajimobi, we will all work within our capacity to ensure that peace finally returns to the party.
“Since members of the reconciliation committee will derive their powers from the party, it is expedient for us to inaugurate the state executive council today. Otherwise, it will be futile for us to set up any committee that will not have constitutional backing.
“I can assure you that we will do all within our powers to ensure peace. Whatever it will take, we will ensure that peace returns to the party. I’m appealing to them to bury the hatchet in the overriding interest of our great party.
According to him, conflict was a normal phenomenon in any political party that was in control of a state and the federal governments, adding that APC was big enough to accommodate all shades of opinions.
“I am, therefore, using this occasion to appeal to some of our leaders and supporters who are aggrieved to please reconsider their positions.
“We are appealing to them not to go to any other party. As progressives, we know conflicts always arise within the party, especially when the party has the control of both the state and the centre.
“Let us remain within the party to solve our problems. And by the grace of God, I am sure we are going to overcome these trying times and come out of it stronger", he said.
Members of the executives who took oath of office administered by a legal practitioner, Mr. Segun Abayomi, include Mr Lekan Adeyemo (Deputy Chairman); Mr Mojeed Olaoya (Secretary); Mr Arikewuyo Rasaq (Vice-Chairman, Oyo North); Mr Solomon Akindele (Vice-Chairman, Oyo Central) and Mr Ade Adekanye.(Vice-Chairman, Oyo South).
Others were Mrs. Mabel Williams (Woman Leader); Mr Isiaka Aare-Okuta (Youth Leader); Mrs. Toyin Akintade (Assistant Woman Leader); Mrs. Ibrahim Faosat (Assistant Youth Leader) and Mr. Taiwo Ige (Welfare officer).