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I’m Qualified To Govern Osun – Osun AG, Dr. Ajibola Basiru

The state of Osun Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice Dr. Ajibola Basiru spoke with Assistance Editor LEKE SALAUDEEN on his governorship ambition, the state’s debt profile, the anti-graft war and other issues.

Q – Why are you interested in the Osun governorship seat?

I am definitely interested. I am qualified to be the governor of Osun, having served as commissioner for Special Duties and Regional Integration and now an Attorney – General and Commissioner for Justices under Governor Rauf Aregbesola. However, it is the collective decision of the party Leader that will make it happen, not my personal decision.

If in the process of consultation my name comes up, I will be glad to serve the Governor, State of Osun

Governor is a serious business for people who are grounded, loyal, committed and have clear pragmatic vision on how to consolidate on the achievement of Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola as it was done in Lagos where Asiwaju Bola Tinubu laid the foundation of good governance on which his successor Mr Babatunde Fashola built on and how being consolidated by Mr Akinwunmi Ambode.

But I believe the decision has to be taken by the leadership and general consensus of the party. Fornow, our party has not given the go ahead on campaign; I need not say more until then.

Q – At what stage did APC decide to drop Adeleke as its Osun West Senatorial candidate?

He was not dropped. He participated in the governorship primary and scored one vote. He wrote in the morning of convention to withdraw from the All Progressive Congress (APC) senatorial district primary. He was didn’t believe in democratic process. He’s not a member of our party. He was drafted by some people who wanted to destabilize the party in the state.

Q – Some people believe it was protest vote that won the election for him. Do you agree?

I don’t agree he won as a result of protest. He won as a result of bulk vote he got from Ede and Egbedore Local Government. Our party member in the two local governments voted for their Kinsman. Others voted for him as sympathy for his late senior brother. The Adeleke family politicized the death of Senator Isiaka Adeleke to Whip up sentiments and curry favor from the electorate. When you look at the result from the two local governments, the vote margin between the People Democratic Party (PDP) and All Progressive Party (APC) in Ede was 27,000 votes and Egbedore 2,000 votes. In other local government where APC didn’t win we lost with a margin between 1,000 and 2,000 votes.

A lot of APC members have sold their soul to the PDP; many of them were gloating, celebrating the defeat of the party. It was a Mid-term election in which a large number of voters were not enthusiastic to participate; many of them didn’t come out to vote. Losing the senatorial election is not a big deal. Former Governor Adams Oshihomole of Edo State lost two senatorial seats in 2015 general elections but APC won the governorship election in November 2016. It is a challenge for us to put our party in order. Some elements that have genuine grievances would be carried along.

Q – Did APC hold primary for senatorial aspirants or it came up with a consensus candidate?

The primary took place. All delegates were accredited and voted. The element that backed Adeleke was those who wanted to impose him APC. Adeleke was represented at the Police security meeting held on the eve of the primary only to pull out in the morning of the primary. We have killed the conspiracy. Those who joined APC bent on taking over the party. Three local governments produced 90 per cent of votes that gave victory to Adeleke.

Q – But the blamed APC for picking its candidate from Ejigbo local government that produced the Speaker of the State House of Assembly and a member of House of Representatives. |Don’t you think zoning would have been appropriate?

Zoning has no basis in the selection of candidates. It is one of the abnormalities that the PDP introduced into the policy to cause confusion in the system. If you remember during the Second Republic in Oyo State, the Governor, the late Chief Bola Ige was from Ilesa, his deputy the late Chief Sunday Afolabi from Iree and the Secretary to the state Government,

Chief Bisi Akande hails from Ila-Orangun; all of them fall within Osun State that was later carved out of the Old Oyo State. Nobody complained that all of them were from the same Zone. In the era leadership positions were given based on integrity, commitment and ability to deliver. Democratic governance is based on competence and democratic ideals not where you come from or whether you are rich or you are poor.

Source: Nation Newspaper

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