Stay off OPC, group warns Obasanjo
By Bola Akinjugbe
Former President Olusegun Obasanjo has been asked to stay off the Oodua Peoples Congress, (OPC) faction led by the late Dr Fredrick Faseun. That may look strange, but the former President is said to have organized meetings with the hope of ensuring smooth transition of leadership in the OPC after the death of Faseun.
In a chat with our correspondent on Friday, the Chairman of the Caretaker Committee, Alhaji Jubril Ogundimu, the Balogun Adini of Mushin in Lagos said the former President has been making frantic efforts to ensure his rookies take over the faction led behind by the late Yoruba nationalist.
The faction is believed to have branches in all the local governments and wards in the South West including, Kwara, Kogi, Edo and Delta States.
“We are sending a very strong message to the former President Olusegun Obasanjo to stay clear of OPC. Faseun left a huge organization that currently has no leader after his demise. We have been making efforts so that the right leadership will emerge. Unfortunately, the former President Obasanjo and his friend Fasawe are making efforts to take over the OPC. This is unacceptable to us. They claim to be making peace efforts, but in reality, they are scheming to take over the organization. We won’t allow this to happen” Ogundimu told Irohinoodua in a chat.
He said Obasanjo had sent his friend, Chief Oyewole Fasawe, a businessman and socioalite to meet with the congress but that members of the group did not see sincerity of purpose in the initiative.
“What OPC members are wondering is what Obasanjo wants to do with the OPC. This same man jailed Faseun for two years. He had invited Faseun to visit him in Ota. They both went round his farm and ate pounded yam together. The second day, Obasanjo sent the DSS to arrest Faseun and kept him in detention for more than two years. Now he wants to plant his stooge as the leader of OPC” Ogundimu said.
Another member of the OPC Samson Olubodun told our correspondent that a kangaroo nomination was done with the backing of Obasanjo which produced one John Dele Oshibote as the new leader of OPC.
Olubodun said “Oshibote is unknown to majority members of the OPC. He is a friend of the state and he is hands-in-gloves with the security operatives. He surely will not represent Yoruba interest. He has no ideology. Obasanjo is desperate to impose him on OPC. We don’t want to be used as a militia by any reactionary group of later day Yoruba leaders”, Olubodun said. He argued that Chief Fasawe had met the OPC twice in an hotel in Lagos acting on behalf of the former President. He said “It’s a gameplan to set up a front for a reactionary political class. They appear to see the future of what will befall Nigeria and they are looking for fronts to use. We won’t allow this”, Olubodun said. He said Obasanjo once declared that OPC members must be shot at sight adding that no fewer than 100 members of OPC were mauled down due to the state order. An aide of the former President who does not wish to be name however told Irohinoodua that the former President was only interested in peaceful coexistence in Nigeria. “He does not want conflict or any crisis in any part of the country. He knows it will be in the interest to all if the organization is led by a rational and decent person. That is all he wants”, the aide said.