Kayode Fasua writes that the discord which led former governor of Ogun State, Senator Ibikunle Amosun into forming the Allied Progressives Movement where he fielded Adekunle Akinlade to run as governor, but he lost to Governor Dapo Abiodun, has run its full course as seven members of the state legislature who won on the ticket of the APM have returned to the ruling All Progressives Congress
Seven lawmakers in the Ogun State House of Assembly, who were loyalists of serving senator representing Ogun Central, former Governor Ibikunle Amosun, have dumped their party and returned to the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC).
They were representing the Allied Progressives Congress (APM), which is Amosun’s pet political party, at the state Assembly.
Amosun had objected to the choice of now Governor Dapo Abiodun during the 2019 governorship election, but Abiodun was fully backed by Asiwaju Bola Tinubu and Vice President Yemi Osinbajo.
The discord led Amosun into forming the APM where he fielded Adekunle Akinlade to run as governor, but Abiodun won at the poll.
Curiously, while Amosun openly funded the APM, he remained in the APC. The collapse of the APM in Ogun may create another power bloc within the APC which is tensed from internal wrangling between factions loyal to another former governor of Ogun State, Chief Segun Osoba and the incumbent governor, Prince Dapo Abiodun.
Returning to the party at a time when many political offices have been filled could mean that Amosun loyalists have their eyes set on the next general election in 2023.
Abiodun, while receiving the seven APM members of the Assembly into the APC, urged them to be loyal to the party and work towards realising “the Building the Future Together” agenda of the state government.
Speaking while receiving the defecting lawmakers, who were led to him by the Speaker of the House, Rt. Hon. Kunle Oluomo, in his office at Oke-Mosan, Abeokuta, Governor Abiodun stressed the need for all members to be loyal and contribute to the development of the state.
Abiodun who described the lawmakers’ move as “home coming”, said, “it is a thing of joy to have a member of the family that had left home as a result of disagreement, to return home”.
“You have not come back through coercion or by force. Remember you will be criticised for coming back. In line with our inclusive and participatory policy, we welcome you.
“You will recall that we have not discriminated against you in the past 18 months even while you were not with us. We will ensure you enjoy all the all the benefits that our members enjoy”, he promised.
The governor expressed the hope that by welcoming back into the fold of the party, would not regret the inclusiveness policy of his administration, urging the defectors to work hard to strengthen the party in the State and the administration to deliver on its mandate to the people.
The governor alsoused the occasion to appreciate the entire members of the House, attributing the modest achievements recorded so far to the continued support of the lawmakers in the last one and a half years.
Presenting the seven lawmakers to the Governor, the Speaker, Oluomo, noted that the rejoining of the members symbolised the achievements of the administration in getting everyone on board.
“I am happy to inform you today that the members of our great party-the All Progressives Congress on the floor of the House has increased from 15 to 22. Today all the seven members of the All Progressives Movement (APM), in the House moved to the APC.
“This means that our great party is totally and fully in charge of the Ogun State House of Assembly all due to your ability to manage the people of the State towards the entrenchment of progressive policies in the State”, he noted.
In his remarks, the Senior Special Adviser to the Governor on Political Matters, Rt. Hon. Tunji Egbetokun, expressed the hope that the 22 members would translate ‘into positive majority’, that would add to the development of the State.
Speaking, one of the new members, and immediate past Minority Leader, Hon. Ganiyu Oyedeji, representing Ifo 2 State Constituency, said described his move as home coming, pledging continued support to the government as he has been doing even as an opposition member.
Hon. Musefiu Olatunji Lamidi in his remarks pledged significant contributions to enable the people enjoy the benefits of the administration, while Honourables Latifat Ajayi, Adeniran Adeyinka and Yusuf Amosun, appreciated the governor for his inclusive policy and promised to contribute their quotas to the socio-economic development of the state.
Presenting the seven lawmakers to the Governor, the Speaker, Oluomo, noted that the rejoining of the members symbolised the achievements of the administration in getting everyone on board. I am happy to inform you today that the members of our great party-the All Progressives Congress on the floor of the House has increased from 15 to 22.
Today all the seven members of the All Progressives Movement (APM), in the House moved to the APC. This means that our great party is totally and fully in charge of the Ogun State House of Assembly all due to your ability to manage the people of the State towards the entrenchment of progressive policies in the state