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APC KWARA CHAIRMANSHIP: Why Gov. AbdulRahman Must Look Towards Kwara South

Bolare Jolayemi writes in support of the APC Kwara Chairmanship slot being zoned to Kwara South and why Gov. AbdulRahman AbdulRazak should circumspectly look towards the region in that regard, he elucidates

The aftermath of the vacuum left as a result of the removal of the erstwhile Caretaker Committee Chairman of the All Progressives Congress, APC in Kwara, Bashir Bolarinwa has kicked off the race for who would be the helmsman of the ruling party in the state.

As the APC in Kwara seeks to appoint in the next few months a chairman whose tenure will extend to 2023 when the general elections is billed to hold, It has become of grave importance for the party to put its house in order so as to retain its winning streak at the elections as was the case in the 2019 O to ge landslide victory.

As the American 20th century political scientist put it, politics is about who gets what, when and how. It then therefore not surprising that all and sundry are taking their shot at the spot. 

However, reason must prevail. Equity, fairness and justice should not be thrown into the wind amidst this contest of some sort. In furthering the banner of the government of the people, we must ensure equal representation and belonging for all strata of the Kwara society.

This requires that the party puts sensitive political factors into consideration in the appointment of a new chairman for the party as it cannot afford internal divisions at such a critical time.

In other words, the party has to take specific steps to ensure stability to build a formidable structure that will see it coast to victory in the next general elections in 2023. But what really pricks the discerning mind would be to ask what criterion best fits one who should take up the exalted office of the party helmsman.  

Zone Equity
Today, while Kwara Central has produced the Governor who heads the Executive and the Speaker of the State Assembly hails from Kwara Central, it is only just that Kwara South should be given the fair chance to head the ruling party. The reign of deputies (deputy governor, deputy speaker) from the zone cannot be regarded as satisfactory enough in the scheme of things if equity was ever a thing. If the holder of the post was from the Kwara South zone, it is only just that it returns back there. Reason should prevail over inordinate desires.

Religious Representation
As much as this is an issue some would readily want to shy away from, we must be true to ourselves that in a representative government, people would always seek to identify with their likes. For a multi religious state as ours, it reeks of dismay to discover that the two top political positions in the state are carried out by Muslims and the only one which was being occupied by a Christian is being rumored to be passed on to a Muslim. If this is true, those at the helm might need to retrace their steps on this one.

Interestingly, as fate would have it, of the three deputy chairmen who managed the affairs of the party with the past Caretaker Committee Chairman, Bashir Bolarinwa, all two from the North and Central zones pitched their tents with the now Awol chairman expect for the deputy chairman representing Kwara South in the person of Hon. Olayemi Olabanji. 

This show of loyalty, a scarce trait needed in politics should therefore count for not just something but a lot in the zone’s favor when the decision to fill the vacuum at the party’s top spot is to be made.

Among the qualities needed to execute that position judiciously are, 1) Proven and not just promised loyalty, 2) Proven commitment to the party 3) fairness in relating with all members of the party and 4) a command of respect across all members of the party across the state.

Fortunately, the current APC Kwara South deputy chairman, Hon. Olayemi Olabanji who is one of the top contenders for the position rightly measures up to these qualities and more.

From his early days in politics, Olabanji has proven to be a grassroots political mobilizer and a progressive with a track record as far back as the AD, AC and ACN days. A former member of the House of Assembly in Lagos, former Federal House of Representatives member and former chairman of the National Identity Management Company, NIMC, Olabanji has built friendships across the Niger and mastered the art of party loyalty which he has proven time and time again.

The former legislator believes that the party is the vehicle for taking party members to their desired destinations and so must be placed on sound footing before individual interests and ambitions.

His forthrightness and dedication witnessed the ideation and crusade of the O to ge movement in Kwara South, which then led to the eventual victory at the polls in 2019.

Olabanji, no doubt, has the required qualities and formula that gives any group or association he belongs to an advantage.

That is why many are calling on the APC as a whole and Governor AbdulRahman AbdulRazak as the leader of the party in the state to look into ensuring that Hon. Olayemi Olabanji leads the party to the upcoming elections in 2023 to continue the overriding success of the A.A administration.

With the acrimony and distortion the past administration of the party caused within the party structure, it is of grave importance that active stakeholders take the succession of the role of the party chairman seriously.

Better still, the search need not go too long which can amount to chasing shadows and paralysis.

Olabanji, as former a federal lawmaker has contacts across the nation and state, commands respect among political leaders across the country and state, hence will have no problems expanding the party structure and making it consolidate its winning position in all zones of the state.

Diversity is having a seat at the table, inclusion is having a voice, and belonging is having that voice being heard.

Mr Governor, please do give Kwara South a place of belonging in this polity and posterity would smile on you.

Oloye Bolare Jolayemi writes in from Omu Aran, Kwara State

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