… AS CHIEFTAIN TIPS LADOJA, AKINJIDE, OTHERS
A chieftain of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Oyo State and a member of the party's elders' committee, Dr Dejo Raimi, yesterday urged President Goodluck Jonathan and the PDP National Working Committee to limit the search for a replacement for the position of chairman of the Board of Trustees (BoT) to Oyo State.
Former President Olusegun Obasanjo had earlier in the week resigned his position as chairman of the PDP BoT. The former secretary to Oyo State Government, in a chat with journalists said only a candidate from Oyo State, the political capital of the South-west geo-political zone, would be acceptable for the position in the interest of equity, fair play and justice.
To the founding members of the PDP in the state, picking a candidate from the pacesetter state would serve as a sort of compensation for the South-west and Oyo State in particular for the loss of key positions like the chairmanship of the party as well as the speakership position to the North-east and North-west geo-political zones respectively.
Asked if the state had anybody who could fit into Obasanjo's shoes, Raimi replied : 'What would you say of Chief Richard Akinjide, the former Attorney-General and Minister of Justice, who is currently a member of BoT, what of Senator Rashidi Ladoja, Dr Victor Omololu Olunloyo and Chief Yekeen Adeojo.' He argued that it would amount to cheating, on the part of the state and the South-west to select a candidate from any other state or zone, since according to him, the region was denied some key positions because Obasanjo was occupying the BoT chairmanship seat.
He pointed out further that Oyo State produced the only PDP senator and more House of Representatives members than any other state in the South-west, adding that the state deserved the party's BoT chairmanship, having lost out in the race for the national secretary of the party. He also condemned the relegation of ministers from the state to second-class status since the return of civil rule in 1999, while urging President Jonathan to support the emergence of a candidate from Oyo State.