PDP South-West zonal congress proves bookmakers wrong
The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Zonal Congress, held in Osogbo, the Osun State capital, yesterday, proved many bookmakers wrong. The thinking by political observers was that blood would flow and the entire ancient city of Osogbo would be embroiled in a deep political crisis.
Supporters of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), had even mouthed it that violence might characterise the conduct of the congress.
But alas, the reverse was the case as delegates and camps contesting for the selection of South-West zonal chairmanship office behaved themselves contrary to general expectation.
Despite the relative peace that pervaded the congress held at the WOCDIF Centre, Ring Road, in the ancient city of Osogbo, there were reported skirmishes occasioned by some people believed to be sponsored political thugs by a faction.
On Sunday night, the entire neighbourhood of the congress venue was shattered by incessant gunshots said to have been initiated by some hoodlums allegedly sponsored by political interest.
Delegates to the congress, who lodged at the venue, were said to have been traumatised and scared. The quick intervention of the state police commissioner, who led men and officers to the venue of the unfortunate incident, however, saved the day and prevented the untoward outcome.
Another side attraction occurred at the venue of the congress yesterday when a factional Osun State Chairman of the PDP, Soji Adagunodo, attempted to distribute accreditation tags to his supporters but a vigilant chieftain and former chairman of the party in the state, OlaOluwa, immediately called Adagunodo to order, saying he did not have authority to exercise such power.
Suspected political thugs, who were believed to have been hired for the purpose of the congress, were seen in the streets of Osogbo. They appeared in common printed fabric allegedly purchased by one of the contenders and moving in droves ostensibly to declare their presence to the consternation of the opponents.
Interestingly, a reconciliatory meeting, summoned by stakeholders before the congress in Osogbo, appeared to have worked the magic.
The former Ekiti State governor, Ayodele Fayose, who had been having a running battle with Oyo State Governor Seyi Makinde openly recognised him as leader of PDP in the South West.
The declaration by Fayose surprised many party members and provided an insight into the likely direction of the congress.
Makinde, in his response, said the PDP is one and would continue to be so, saying that the peaceful conduct of the congress was a warning signal to the ruling APC that the party is ready to capture and offer good governance come 2023 general elections in the country.
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