The Former Deputy Governor of Oyo State, Barr. Hazeem Gbolarumi has reacted to rumours from some quarters saying he has defected with his followers to other political party.
In a statement signed by his media aide, Taiwo Oluwadare on Tuesday and made available to journalists, Gbolarumi said he only received opposition parties who came to him for electoral support over the forthcoming governorship election in the state.
Recalled, the chieftain of People’s Democratic Party (PDP) in Oyo State since last week has been receiving governorship candidates from different political parties in the state. Some of them are Senator Teslim Folarin of All Progressive Congress, APC; Oloye Adebayo Adelabu of The Accord Party, Barr. Michael Lana of Social Democratic Party, SDP, Tawfiq Akinwale of Labour Party and others.
The rumour mongers have since circulating rumours in some quarters insinuating that Barr. Gbolarumi and his followers have defected to other political party with false video to convince members of the public.
But in the statement, Gbolarumi posited that he has never been in any political party than PDP and he would not have any cause to do so.
He said: “Some of my political antagonists are at work again using fake pictures and videos to confuse members of the public that I have defected to other political party.
“I want to state that since advent of present democratic dispensation since 1999, I have not defected to any party since and no cause will make me do so.
“I want to clear the air that I have only been receiving governorship candidates from various political parties in the state who came to seek for electoral support over the forthcoming March 11 governorship election in the state.
“It is no news to the entire people of Oyo state in particular, and Nigeria at large that, Engr. Seyi Makinde joined PDP in 2018, after having previously contested about three or four times on the ticket of SDP. All of us that were matured political leaders in Oyo state has now been termed by Engr. Makinde as “expired politicians”, who rallied round him, to emerge as Oyo State governor in 2019, less than one year after he joined PDP.
“The essence of the PDP leaders collapsing their structures in 2019 for Engr. Makinde was to pave way for him as a younger candidate, so that we could give him full backing in running the affairs of the state, in the manner that can be quite impactful to all and sundry. But as soon as Engr. Makinde got into office, none of us who collapsed their structures for him, and all those who worked for him was spared. Meanwhile, these are those who held the PDP structures for decades.
“After becoming a Governor,
Engr. Makinde deliberately destroyed the PDP structures in Oyo state. He then constituted himself the ‘Oyo state PDP structure that is all in all’. The ‘personal structure’ that could waste the state funds anyhow; massively increase the debts of the state for no commensurate effects or projects, qualitate public education, etc.
“The PDP Leaders were much aware of the need for impactful governance, as that would ensure continuity of our party in good leadership in the state, especially, by sourcing for very outstanding and viable candidates to represent the Party. However, Gov. Makinde referred to be the one to give tickets to who he pleases, irrespective of party guidelines and traditions.
“The negative novelty introduced by Engr. Makinde was to use every instrument of the office of the governor and the party to work against the party in all possible way imaginable and unimaginable. He pushed his personal opinion and desire on the entire members of the party in the state, to publicly work against our party and party’s Presidential Candidate, HE. Atiku Abubakar.
“The Gubernatorial Candidates that visited us were aware of the “stand-against-PDP” stance of Engr. Makinde. So, there is nothing wrong in receiving our visitors warmly and having discussions with them. After all, apart from Party differences, we all still belong to same root, which is Oyo State.
“In actual fact, there were representatives of Engr. Seyi Makinde, who were members of National Executive of PDP, who my team also welcomed warmly and discussed with.
“The best for Oyo State is my major concern and also of my team. We therefore, promise to continue to work tirelessly between now and Saturday for having the best four years for Oyo State, by the special grace of God”. Barr. Gbolarumi stated.