To those still harbouring weak, doubtful and clouded faith in the strength of All Progressives Congress, APC, as the leading party in Africa’s most populous democracy, the flag-off of the Ondo State APC governorship campaign on Saturday, September 5, provides a convincing clarification to all doubting minds. The outpour of the people of Ondo State lining up the streets and the Akure Stadium venue of the launch was unprecedented and unimaginable. It was not just an event based on political party, but a conglomeration of people who believed in continuity, consolidation and innovation for a better future of Ondo State.
The dissolution of the party’s National Working Committee and the emergence of the caretaker committee under the leadership of Yobe State Governor, Mai Mala Buni, remains the best decision ever taken to rescue a troubled ruling political party from an imminent collapse. The travails of APC and what seems to be a thing of joy to the opposition parties was, however, short-lived with the emergence of the Mai Mala Buni led caretaker committee. For Governor Rotimi Akeredolu, Saturday, September 5, will forever remain memorable and historical, his joy knew no bounds as he danced all through celebrating the solidarity and mobilisation by the Buni-led committee as well as the massive turn out of the people of Ondo State to attend the campaign signifying a clear commitment to his victory in the forthcoming election.
When the Governor Mai Mala Buni-led Caretaker/Extraordinary National convention committee assembled a 104 member national campaign council, headed by Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu of Lagos State, it became obvious that the party meant business and sent defeating signals down the spine of the opposition parties. The APC Caretaker Committee Chairman, Governor Mai Mala Buni, said: “I am happy to state that the chairman and members of the council were carefully selected, based on their personal records of hard work, proven integrity and commitment to the ideals of our dear party. “I have no doubt in my mind that the rich cream of personalities on this council, with vast electioneering experience, will once again secure the mandate of the people of Ondo State, for the party and its candidate. “You are, therefore, encouraged to always engage in team work and collective participation. We are fully confident that by the grace of God, you will succeed and do us proud.” And so the campaign council took the change and did the party proud.
The tumultuous crowd must have listened to Buni’s appeal: “Let me use this occasion to assure the good people of Ondo State that your investment in the party in this election will consolidate the achievements recorded in the last four years. “I want to assure you that APC will not renege in its drive to build a peaceful and prosperous Ondo State that will be the pride of all.” For Sanwo-Olu: “The tasks given to us by the APC Caretaker/Extra Ordinary National Convention Planning Committee will be approached with the highest sense of responsibility. “We know that the people of Ondo State cannot afford to return to retrogressive life after experiencing progressive governance offered by the APC.” According to Sanwo-Olu, the 104 members of the APC National Campaign Council for Ondo State Governorship election will roll their sleeves and work hard for the victory that APC truly deserve. He said the large number of party men serving on the campaign council was necessitated by the number of people willing to serve the party at all levels and to secure victory for the party.
Addressing the mammoth crowd in Akure, the party Caretaker Chairman reminded the people of Ondo State that it will not be in the interest of the state and the people to contemplate choosing an uncertainty and move backward, while its peers continue to move forward. “We have seen tremendous progress by the Akeredolu administration; we must sustain the regime to ensure continuity and consolidation. “Let me also inform anyone that is not with us today, that the doors of the party are wide open to accommodate anyone.
Your future in APC is certainly bright and promising,” Buni assured. The turnout in Ondo can be likened to the tumultuous welcome the Buni-led Caretaker Committee received a few weeks ago when it visited Benin City to flag off Edo State governorship election campaign. The rebirth of APC with new energy, focus, commitment and fairness has redefined and repositioned the party to a truly leading political party in Nigeria.
The commitment, sense of belonging and all-inclusiveness of the new regime gives APC a more advantageous position over and above other political parties. It is now glaringly evident that with the massive commitment of the Governor Buni-led committee, APC has finally bounced back to life.
Thanks to the Caretaker Committee for making APC once again Nigeria’s leading party.
Mamman is the Director-General Press and Media Affairs to Governor Buni