Osun 2018: Battle For Aregbesola’s Office Begins
On Friday, September 1, the ruling All Progressive Congress, APC, officially unbind those interested in vying for its ticket for 2018 governorship election in Osun state to declare their intention.
This signifies the commencement of intra-party struggle that would ultimately culminated in the choice of a candidate that would fly APC flag in the governorship election, only the 5th in the state since the return of democracy in 1999.
In the fold of the main opposition party in the state, the Peoples Democratic Party, the struggle to dislodge the incumbent ruling party has not taken a definite shape, as the party’s heart is still assailed with all manners of trouble over who occupies the seat of its chairman.
So, while APC’s major hurdle is producing a candidate that will be acceptable to all interests within its fold, the issue of who is the authentic chairman that will lead PDP’s quest for power, remains the first major examination the party must pass before search for the ‘totem of war’ that would not only unclip Aregbesola’s hold on major election deciders in the state, but also de-energise the high flying APC.
Not forgetting that the 2018 governorship election presents it with the best opportunity to return to power, after being controversially eased out in 2010 through Justice Clara-Binta Ogunbiyi’s-led panel, which nullified PDP’s victory in April 14, 2007 governorship election, the Peoples Democratic Party, even with it’s house full of commotion, is still getting suitors courting it for 2018 guber ticket.
It is still fresh in mind the landslide victory of then APC candidate, Governor Rauf Aregbesola, who incidentally entered into the history book as the first elected officeholder on the platform of the then freshly formed All Progressive Congress, APC, in year 2014 when he trounced the PDP candidate, Senator Iyiola Omisore, and expectedly the victory of the party in 2015 general election where it only lost two seats in 26-member Osun state House of Assembly and two National Assembly seats.
But since achieving all these feat, APC has been, somehow descending from its high horse of political successes, losing electoral contests to its main challenger in quick succession. The last two elections held in the state, APC lost both to PDP, the latest being the inconceivable loss of Senator Mudashiru Hussein of APC to Otunba Ademola Adelele of PDP in the recently held Osun West Senatorial Bye Election.