Members of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Kwara State loyal to the Ahmed Ma’karfi faction of the party have rejected a proposal by the state Police Command asking them to vacate the party’s secretariat located at Asa Dam Road, Ilorin as part of an ongoing ‘peace deal’ with the other faction in the state.
The factional members, drawn from across the 16 local government areas of the state, and led by their chairman, Prince Sunday Fagbemi, made their grievance known in Ilorin.
Prince Fagbemi lamented that the faction led by Akogun Iyiola Oyedepo had dragged him to the police, following his faction’s take-over of the secretariat a few weeks ago, saying that he would rather fear the wrath of his members than that of the police on the issue.
Fagbemi, who claimed that he had the support of about 85 per of the party members, expressed concern that following a previous engagement, it would be difficult to fully trust the police on issues affecting the other faction of the party.
“The Police are to defend us. During the last congress of the party held on May 5, 2016, a vehicle was impounded by the police. It was loaded with arms and ammunition. It was not an abandoned vehicle. People were arrested by the Police over the discovery but up till date, nothing has been heard about it.
“How are we sure that if we abide by the Police request to vacate this secretariat, the other people won’t go through the back door and collect the key? I cannot be afraid of the police at the expense of our people.
“When we came here, nobody broke any gate, there was no shooting of guns, The security guards opened the gate for us without let or hindrance, because they know we are members of the same party and if you want to enter your house but you have lost the key, you must of course, find other means of entering. This secretariat was secured through our collective efforts but Oyedepo said the police must ask us to vacate it while the peace talk is going on. Is that what we want?”, he asked members rhetorically.
Fagbemi also denied insinuations that his group was being sponsored to destabilise the PDP in the state, saying on the contrary members of the party should be wary of the Oyedepo faction whose leadership he claimed had their best political accomplishments thus far through the instrumentality of the later Dr Olusola Saraki.
“The truth is that we have been tolerating these people because we believe we are members of the same party and we should find a way of resolving our differences but they are taking our docility for granted and we are not going to accept that again. Indeed we are tired of them and by the next two weeks let’s wait and see what the national will do with them”, he said.
He directed leaders of the party at the local government level to begin the process of preparing their members for the forthcoming council polls in the state and expressed confidence that postponement of the election in the state would help the party to put its house in order and fight to win seats in the council areas.