By Segun Ojo
The Step Aside Chairman of the People Democratic Party (PDP) in Osun State , Hon Soji Adagunodo will be remembered for his insistence on ensuring full democratic process and handing over of the structures of the party to the people at the grassroots who are the statutory stakeholders whose imputs remains the basis of party politics, this was the opinion of a member of the party in Osogbo who said he is more worried about what Hon. Olasoji Adagunodo would be remembered for than on how long he spent as Chairman of the party, the PDP leader said this while fielding questions from Journalists in Osogbo, Osun State capital, on Friday who is on an investigative journalism about the Man Soji Adagunodo as PDP Chairman.
Recall that the National Working Committee of the party had in a letter
signed by Senator Usman Tsauri, the National Secretary of the party, ordered Adagunodo to step aside pending the conclusion of its investigation on the allegation of maladministration and antiparty activities levelled against him by some petitioners of the party in the state.
Speaking about his Step Aside order, the man said it is possible that he has made some mistakes as human being but the party leaders at the national level seem to have forgotten that there is no perfection in human being and his unbeatable and incredible records of performance at the polls in all elections since his appearance for the chairmanship contest of the party speaks volumes and the matter would have been adequately investigated.
In his opinion, the crises was basically an attempt to victimize Soji Adagunodo based on his stance to have the best during the 2018 Gubernatorial primary rather than what is in the allegations as stipulated in the petition because someone who won all elections is not qualified to be tagged as engaging in anti-party activities, it was a wrong judgment.
“You see in whatever you do, those who want to fight you will fight you but I know that his tenure will be defined by God, not by man. We worry more about what he will be remembered for when he was chairman rather than how long he was chairman,” the leader retorted.
The man said that it’s on record that he has served the party diligently since he assumed office on may 9th 2016 through to 25th of March, 2018 with strings of electoral successes. He did not allow normal way of people making money in politics. He run an elitist political administration.
Itemising some of his achievements , the leader said with the support of top political gladiators within the party and the home base supports of all and sundry that he mobilized by his style of full participation of party members from the grassroots at all levels Adagunodo mapped out strategies that led to the victory of Senator Nurudeen Ademola Adeleke during bye election following the demise of former Governor Adetunji Adeleke, his elder brother.
“In 2017, our party defeated the then sitting Governor and a fellow Ijesa compatriot at the Osun West Senatorial Bye election of July 8th, 2017 which produced Senator Ademola Adeleke. The results of the 2018 Gubernatorial election under his watch is in the public domain as testimonial of remarkable efforts which were thwarted by the judicial technicalities of the Appellate and Supreme courts. Also the success of the Party during the General Election as against his predecessor records was a positive development which the party needs to build upon. It is noteworthy that the results of 2018 Gubernatorial Election and that of 2019 General elections has similarities and show that it is the Party that has strength not an individual. This is a credit to his stewardship.
“The victory of PDP in Osun West Senatorial bye-election shot up the hope of the party as a winning party, the party won with more than 60%. With active participation of everybody from their various localities, the party planned more strategies with a view to winning the primary after winning the fourth and final congresses of the party.
He operated a system of localising all politics by allowing the local people to determine who represented them in 2019 general elections. He is concern about winning elections.
“Introduction of Unit Executives in all the 3,010 polling units, and about 700 polling points made of minimum of 20 members and by implication this gave the party about 70,000 non-negitiable votes. This apart from votes from wards and local governments Executive and Leaders. This is a good strategy for an opposition Party.
“The return of enstranged members from Omisore SDP factions, Akinbade’s labour party , former governor Olagunsoye Oyinlola’s CUPP and many others before the governorship election of 2018.
“Nurturing and funding of the Adeleke Youth Empowerment Scheme known as
A-YES with a strong population of between 30,000 to 35,000 strong youth members and fully funded before the 2018 Gubernatorial Election, they spread across all polling Units, Wards and local government areas. That was an additional 35,000 votes for PDP.
“Unification of all factions into one indivisible family which enhanced the victory of the party on September 22nd, 2018 gubernatorial polls was another major breakthrough , he managed the party notwithstanding the division caused by the 2018 primary and only RT hon Adejare Bello left due to Ede local politics.
PDP successfully shook off the stigma of a loser with over 100,000 vote deficit in 2014 and became a winner in that governorship election of 2018 September 22nd.
“Grassroots recognition of all party positions with a promise to allow same during primaries and selection of candidates for elective offices after the party primaries. There was no imposition at any level again which regained the people’s confidence in the workability of the party.
Deliberate removal of obnoxious and fictitious financial burdens on aspirants at the ward, local and state levels during contests which was aimed at encouraging them as members of opposition party. Contestants were saved from undue exploitation at any level. This arrangement also led to aspirants that withdrew before primary contest refunds of their money since they didn’t get the ticket of the party to contest,
During the Osun West Senatorial bye-election that brought Sen Demola Adeleke to the upper Chambers Adagunodo was on the same page with the Candidate and his Elder brother, Dr Deji Adeleke, Adagunodo blocked all excessive and frivolous spending. He didn’t give room or means for people to exploit the candidate and his brother, however, during the gubernatorial election reverse was the case. In fact, Adagunodo didn’t know that he had created enemies for himself during the West Senatorial election by allowing prudent spending . By the time the governorship contest started and the same candidate was showing interest, those who wanted to make money had created a wedge between the Adelekes and Adagunodo, they turned them against themselves and Dr. Deji Adeleke became repulsive against the party chairman. The Candidate expended so much more and got very little back. Hence Adagunodo is a Chairman that ensures you get value for money.
Winning is the KEY Word of Adagunodo. Whatever and Whoever that would make the party win any Election was the most important in his mind. He inculcated it in the mind of many of his followers because according to him, “if you don’t win you have no right to demand anything from the candidates after election that is why most of the Election he superintendent, almost all the people that are close to him and his followers won in all their units, wards and some cases local governments”
Finally Hon Soji Adagunodo gave the party an image of one indivisible party and started rebuilding the party by bringing back all the political Gladiators that had earlier left the party until recently when “Adagunodo must go ” Started.
Segun Ojo Writes from Ilesa. He is a Political analyst, an opinion writer
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