How PDP’ll sweep Osun gov election —Oladimeji
A chieftain of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and former member of the House of Representatives, Dr Muyiwa Oladimeji, speaks with MOSES ALAO on the developments in the polity, the September 22, governorship election in Osun State and the chances of the PDP.
With the developments in the polity whereby the National Assembly is locked down, attempts are made by lawmakers to either impeach the Senate President or state governor without forming the two-thirds majority needed for such process. As a former member of the House of Representatives, what do you think these portend for Nigeria’s democracy?
You did not add the attempt by eight lawmakers in Benue State to depose or impeach the governor. I think the APC-led Federal Government is a gangster (permit me to use that word) anti-democratic and most corrupt government that this country has ever seen. You see, corruption should not be seen only in terms of money. Corruption includes immoral attitude; bankruptcy in terms of morality is also corruption.
Look at what happened at the National Assembly: blocking the gates of the National Assembly and preventing the senators and the representatives from going into their offices. That has never happened before for God’s sake. The APC keeps talking about 16 years of PDP but I am sure Nigerians will remember that this sort of thing never happened under the leadership of the PDP. This is a government where if you are arrested or you are being interrogated by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) or the Independent Corrupt Practices and other rerlated offences Commission (ICPC) and you defect to APC tomorrow, your sins are forgiven. That is what this government is all about and yet they say they are fighting corruption. But you see, some of us are not surprised. You need to have a sense of history to remember what happened when President Muhammadu Buhari was military Head of State.
But with the sack of the former Director-General of the Department of State Security, don’t you think that is enough to absolve the government from the blames for what transpired at the National Assembly?
Thank God that the vice-president, Professor Yemi Osinbajo, who is a lawyer, recognises the fact that he has to answer his own name and that’s why the director-general of the DSS, as we have been told on television, has been asked to proceed on leave. But the mere attempt and effrontery, if it had not been that the government condoned such attitude, I don’t think any organisation either the DSS or the police, would have dared to do that.
Have you not seen how the Inspector-General of police also behaves? He is invited by the National Assembly and he refuses to go. An IGP doesn’t answer the National Assembly’s summons and nobody does anything to him! Did you not see how it took several months before the former Secretary to the Government of the Federation [Babachir Lawal] was removed despite allegations of corruption against him? These are all indications that this government is anti-democratic and very corrupt.
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When you make this kinds of statements, what is often said is that corruption is fighting back. Are you this embittered because your party, the PDP, lost out? And do you think there is hope for your party despite the alleged failings of the APC government?
Corruption fighting back? I don’t want to mention names, but a former minister who was supposed to be on the EFCC’s wanted list came back from abroad, defected to the APC and we don’t hear of his case anymore. But Fani Kayode is still being harassed left, right and centre every day from one court to another. That is just one example. I am not embittered, but I think Nigerians are perceptive and intelligent, they can see through the facade of this government’s anti-corruption stance. Don’t forget that the ICPC, EFCC were started by the PDP government.
So, you are not afraid that the PDP might self-destruct through all these internal squabbles, as it is being said that Dr Akin Ogunbiyi, who came a close second in the primary, is still embittered by the outcome?
No. I have no such fears, because Dr Akin Ogunbiyi has said he is not leaving PDP and he has not left the PDP. And on the question of Ogunbiyi being embittered, the issue is when you have a close contest like we had whereby the result of the primary election is so close, you don’t expect people not to feel disappointed. But Dr Ogunbiyi is a decent gentleman. He is too decent to be embittered. Yes, he may be disappointed but he is not bitter. We know the person that has been instituting the court cases, pretending as if it is Ogunbiyi that sent him.
You said the PDP will sweep the poll…
By the grace of God…
You think the grace of God will be enough in the face of federal might, heavy monetisation and militarisation?
The grace of God and the determination of the people. And about the federal might, we have learnt some useful lessons from what happened in Ekiti and I can assure you that many of us are great students who learn from events. I can tell you we have prepared adequate strategies to counter the incursion and untoward attitude of the Federal Government to sabotage democracy and rig elections.