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Mimiko, Kashamu berate APC, canvass support for Jonathan


AHEAD of the March 28 Presidential Election, Governor of Ondo State, Dr. Segun Mimiko, who is also the Coordinator of President Goodluck Jonathan’s Presidential Campaign in the South-West and the Chairman, Organisation and Mobilisation Committee of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), South West, Prince Buruji Kashamu, have said the noise about the All Progressives Congress (APC), Presidential Candidate, Major-General Muhammadu Buhari (rtd.) defeating the incumbent, is nothing but mere propaganda on pages of news papers and the social media.

  The duo posited that the reality is in favour of Jonathan and the ruling People Democratic Party (PDP) will win the presidential election. 

 According to them, “Among the entire presidential candidates, President Jonathan stands a better chance of retaining power”, adding that the South West zone and particular Ondo State, is massively supporting Mr. President’s reelection.

 Speaking at different fora recently, Mimiko and Kashamu berated the APC for deploying ‘dangerous propaganda’ through the social media ahead of the elections.

  According to them, “The nature of propaganda the APC is deploying is not only dangerous to the nation’s democracy but it is also capable of misleading innocent Nigerians and particularly the Yoruba.”

 While urging the Yoruba people against the antics of the APC, Mimiko said it is completely anti-South West for any acclaimed progressive politicians to work against the implementation of the recommendations of the 2014 National Conference.

   He noted that the report of the confab, if implemented, would actualize the long expected dream of restructuring and true federalism, which has been the agitation of the South West and true progressives in the country. 

According to Mimiko, “Mr. Jonathan is the only Nigerian President who has listened to the voice of reasoning by convoking the National Conference to discuss the problems of the country and chart the way forward. He appears to be the only one who can implement the recommendations of the confab, if he retains power.” 

  Mimiko, who spoke to The Guardian through his Commissioner of Information, Kayode Akinmade urged the leaders of the Yoruba people and other Nigerians to be cautious of the tactics of some Southerners in the APC “who are either intentionally or unintentionally, working towards re-enslavement of Nigerians under the present lopsided federal arrangement.

  “For anybody in the APC, who has once championed the cause of true federalism and or claimed to be a true progressives, now working contrary to anything that would disrupt the implementation of the 2014 National Conference recommendations, which Mr. President has promised to implement if reelected, does not only hates the Yoruba, such person is not thinking about the emancipation of Nigerians, who were suffering under the present federal logjam.”

 He said that the 2015 presidential election is a matter of seeking for total freedom for the people or going back to those old days where few cabals dominated the wealth and fortune of Nigeria.”

  On how Mimiko is coordinating the South West zone for Jonathan, Akinmade said it is total falsehood for anybody to say that the PDP is divided because of Mimiko. 

  “Every member of the PDP knows what is at stake in this election and they are therefore working together towards same goal to ensure victory for Jonathan next month. 

  “I can assure you that victory for Jonathan is certain because of the massive mobilization and house-to-house campaign and sensitization going on. No one can fool Yoruba people again.”

  Although, Akinmade agreed there are minor issues “that of course have been settled and everybody is now working towards one goal, which is principally to prevent this country from slipping into the hands of those who were desperate for power because of their selfish desire.”

  Akinmade explained that the efforts of his boss and other committed members of the party in the zone are already yielding results as they have succeeded in getting the support of most Yoruba socio-cultural groups, which include Afenifere, Oodua Peoples Congress (OPC), Yoruba Ronu, traditional rulers and a host of others.

  As regards Ondo State, where many have been made to believe that Jonathan is not popular and that the PDP’s house is in disarray, the commissioner said the insinuation is contradicting to the facts on ground because the people in the state are solidly behind Mr. President “they are going to vote for Jonathan massively come March 28. We are dealing with facts and not propaganda.”

  Akinmade said that the PDP’s efforts in bringing together all the South West delegates to the confab at a summit was to further sensitise Yoruba people on the sincerity of President Jonathan to implement the confab. 

  According to him, “Beyond the South West, other groups in other parts of the South East, South South and the North, particularly the Middle Belt have keyed into the Jonathan’s reelection bid. I don’t know how a man with such support would lose this election?” The likes of former governors Adebayo Alao-Akala and Rasheed Ladoja, who are in the Labour and Accord Party, respectively would work massively for President Jonathan in the presidential election.”

  Akinmade dismissed insinuations that Jonathan would lose in Ogun, Osun and Lagos, as he affirmed that the president’s chances are not only bright in Ekiti but certain.

 Buruji on his part is not relenting in mobilizing the grassroots support, which was part of the combined mobilization team for the president in the South West ahead of the presidential election.

  Last week, his committee appointed the former Ondo state chairman of the party, Mr. Ebenezer Alabi as the chairman of ‘Omoilu’ group, a mobilisation wing of the party in the state.

  Kashamu said the move was to ensure the success of President Jonathan and other candidates of the party in the zone.

  With the decision to appoint Alabi as the leader of the group, which has been on the vanguard of mobilisation for the PDP, Alabi would head the Omoilu Foundation and as the state Coordinator, Mobilisation and Organisation Committee of the PDP.

 According to Kashamu, “The PDP has commenced house-to-house campaign across the country and especially in the South-West. In the continuous discharge of its mobilisation and organisation activities, we are assuring that there will be a united front in the South-West in general.”

  He assured the people that the party in the zone would ensure all internal crises in the party in the region are resolved.

  He said, “While collaborating with other stakeholders towards ensuring the success of our party and its candidates at all levels of the election, I assure you that we would do all that are necessary to resolve all outstanding issues in due course.”

Speaking further, he said “We are encouraged to take this step because of our strong desire to forge a common front for the PDP not just in Ondo State, but the entire South-West geo-political zone and convincingly win the 2015 general elections for the PDP and our amiable President Jonathan.”

  He averred that the body he heads has resolved to ensure that the zone is delivered to the party and Jonathan in next month’s elections.

 Already, Kashamu said plans were on to grow the number of canvassers from 30,000 to about 100,000 and possibly 200,000, promising a house-to-house campaign to ensure victory for President Jonathan.

  Speaking further, Kashamu, who noted that he had his reservations about the Independent National electoral Commission’s insistence to use the card readers, however, said, “we do hope that INEC would stick to its role as an unbiased umpire and allow the true wish of the people to prevail.”

 According to him, the opposition was based on the manipulative tendencies to use machine to disqualify registered voters if it developed technical problems.

  Kashamu however said the party was irrevocably committed to a free and fair election in line with the Transformation Agenda of President Jonathan, who he said had always insisted on “one man, one vote; one woman, one vote; one youth, one vote.”

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