It is inappropriate for Lai Mohammed to split Kwara APC – supporter of AbdulRazaq
Prince Sunday Fagbemi is one of the leaders of the four groups that formed the All Progressives Congress in Kwara State in August 2018 and belongs to AA, a pro-Governor AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq group of the state APC. He talks with TUNDE OYEKOLA about the causes of the crisis within the party and what the group intends to do
What is the cause of the APC crisis?
First of all, let me refresh your memory on the rebirth of the CPA in 2018. It was an amalgam of varied tendencies with no common ideology and therefore lacked the most rudimentary party discipline at the takeoff of its operation. . It is also necessary to recall the events which led to the conclusion of the primary elections for the party governor in October 2018 with Mallam AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq emerging as the winner of the primary elections. Since then, there has been no love lost between him and Alhaji Lai Mohammed, who assumed the leadership of the party shortly before the primaries were held (being the most senior politician at the time). This not too cordial relationship resulting from a competition for supremacy has existed until today. It is from this angle that one can understand this persistent hostility. The crisis concerns supremacy and the minister, who became party leader shortly before the governor’s primaries, wants to continue to be the leader, but the party constitution already stipulates that the governor is the party leader. I think this is the summary of what happened.
There are accusations and cons charges since the governor alleged that the minister and the party executive had not followed him to campaign for the election and that the minister had collected donations and had not made them known to him. What is your opinion on this?
It is a very serious matter. A candidate cannot be alone, he is promoted by the party and he is supposed to be supported by the party. After Alhaji AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq emerged as a candidate for the post of party governor, the party did not follow him to campaign in North Kwara and Central (Kwara). It was then that we were going to the southern zone, in particular in the communes of Ifelodun and Irepodun, that the president of the party, Alhaji Bashir Bolarinwa, accompanied by some members of the executive, followed us in the campaign. and.
Most of the executive did not follow us. Alhaji Lai Mohammed has never followed us in any campaign for once, except the day the president came to the state to campaign. About campaign funds, some well-meaning Kwarans in Lagos state donated for party campaign through Alhaji Lai Mohammed, he collected the money and never informed the candidate party and spent the money. In fact, the candidate was not happy with it. As to whether the governor collected the money or not, this has already been settled by the party’s vice-chairman of the north-central zone, who said that no governor had received any money for the party. countryside. The money that was given for the election was for the officers. The pattern of how to spend the money followed it and there were no complaints anywhere, even the coordinator, Moshood Mustapha, confirmed it.
The minister alleged that the governor did not fund the campaign. Is it true?
The minister did nothing to fund the campaign and we traveled every nook and cranny of Kwara State. I had the privilege of being at the center of it all: the governor funded the campaign. Lai Mohammed used the money with him to buy vehicles, motorcycles, etc., which he distributed to his former campaign organization, Lai Mohammed Campaign Organization. They are the ones who received all the vehicles. Nobody argued then because these beneficiaries were party members and we did not want to shake the boat because the elections were underway.
How do you think this crisis can be resolved?
When the water reaches a point, it boils and then cools. So I know God will step in.
You struggled to gain power in 2019 and 2023 is fast approaching. Don’t you think this crisis will affect the chances of the party?
Yes, everyone is aware of the presence of the opposition in the state. That is why we are trying to repair the barriers. Apart from the fact that the minister came to unveil a faction secretariat last week, everything had been in place to ensure that there was reconciliation everywhere. The reconciliation is still going on and I think it will give a fruitful result.
We learned that your group plans to denounce Mohammed to the national secretariat of the APC. Is it true?
Yes, this is what we want to do and this is why we want to inform the press because someone with ministerial status should not be found doing what Alhaji Lai Mohammed did. He is a beneficiary of the party and he must not contribute to the demolition of the house he helped to build. I think it is improper for a minister to split the party. They said they were the ‘Third Force’. What is the significance of this? Then maybe they are already considering another place and want to destroy the APC, so that it is easier for them.
Is Muhammad part of the third force?
He should be the leader because all the people who burned the broom, which is the symbol of the APC, that day were the same people present at the inauguration of the faction secretariat.
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