Allies of Governor Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq of Kwara State on Thursday fought back against the duo of Alhaji Lai Mohammed and Senator Gbemi Saraki in their continuing struggle for the structure of the All Progressives Congress, APC in Kwara State. The agents of the governor hit back at Lai and Gbemi over the claim that the governor had become high-handed.
Governor Abdulrazaq’s allies comprising some of the state’s leading political leaders mobilized themselves to counter the narrative by Lai and Gbemi’s allies that the removal of Hon. Bashiru Bolanriwa as the chairman of the caretaker committee of the APC in Kwara State.
They described those who visited the national secretariat on Wednesday to protest against the governor as failed governorship aspirants.
Among those who addressed the press at the national secretariat of the APC included the chairman of the Kwara APC Elders Forum, Barr. Kunle Suleiman, Nigeria’s immediate-past ambassador to Malaysia, Amb. Nurudeen Muhammed and Senator Suleiman Makanjuola Ajadi.
Other members of the delegation were Gen. Tunde Bello (retd), Sen. Muhammed Ahmed, Chief JB Ayeni (Chairman APC Elders Forum in Kwara South), Alhaji Alabi Ilyasu, Chief Wole Oke, Hon. Ayinla Folorunsho, Alhaji Abubakar Ndakene, Hon. Mumuni Katugi, Gen. Ibrahim Bola Kale Agbabiaka and Alhaji Hameed Adio.
Suleiman representing the governor hit back at Lai and Gbemi saying:
“Those ministers and Association of Failed Governorship Aspirants can come to Abuja to say nonsense but they are just paper weight politicians. They have no influence at the grassroots. Even a professor, like Oba Abdulrasheed who prides himself as a former university vice chancellor would still have to come to the grassroots to learn”.
Dismissing the two ministers, Senator Ajadi said:
“Ministers are not elected officials. President Muhammadu Buhari picked them not based on their capability to win elections. If you check the pedigree of the two ministers you will understand what I am saying that they do not have the capacity to win elections,” he stated.
While throwing their support for the appointment of Alhaji Abdullahi Samari as the Acting state Chairman of the party in place of Bolarinwa who is strongly backed by Lai and Gbemi, the group said:
“This indeed is a lifesaving decision for the party that had been in the vice grip of power drunk and self-conceited individuals whose only loyalists are garrulous and selfish few whose only anger with the Governor is that he did not make himself a yes-man or stooge through whom the public vault is thrown open.”
“Contrary to their claims, Hon. Bashir Omolaja Bolarinwa was rightly removed as chairman of the party for his many anti-party conducts which include but are not limited to:
“Open condemnation and denigration of the achievements of the APC government for his own selfish objectives.
“Using the radio and social media platforms to launch attacks on the person of the Governor and members of the State Assembly without any provocation.
“There is no love lost between him and majority of the state executive council members who he never consulted; His refusal to accept the leadership status of the Governor and his utter disrespect for the office of Governor in his language and conduct.
“Against these backdrops, we fully support the decision of the party to remove Hon. Bashir Omolaja Bolarinwa as his continuous leadership of the party was a disaster waiting to happen. We align ourselves with his replacement with a rather cool-headed, committed and mature party chieftain Alhaji Abdullahi Samari who we are sure can better unify the party.”