Atiku Will Give SGF Slot to South West, Says Daniel

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Alhaji Abubakar Atiku, Presidential candidate of the People's Democratic Party (PDP)
  • Tasks Amosun on Ogun West governorship bid

By Femi Ogbonnikan in Abeokuta

The Director-General of Atiku Abubakar Campaign Organisation, Gbenga Daniel, has stated that the position of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF) has been reserved for the South-West if Atiku wins the presidency.

The former Ogun State governor has also urged the incumbent governor, Senator Ibikunle Amosun, to do away with personal ego, if he is truly interested in ensuring that an Ogun West candidate emerges his successor in the run up to the 2019 general elections

Daniel, a former governor of Ogun State, revealed this yesterday at an interactive session with journalists at his Maryland, Lagos home yesterday Lagos.

The News Agency of Nigeria recalls that the Peoples Democratic Party had initially zoned its national chairmanship to the South-West, but later picked Uche Secondus from the South-South.

Also, Atiku’s running mate, Mr. Peter Obi, hails from the South-East.

“We need to understand that the (presidential) candidate has control over who becomes his running mate during the election and who becomes the SGF if he wins.

“The decisions on major offices are being given serious consideration and no zone or region will be marginalised.

“The offices of Senate President and Speaker of the House of Reps will be decided after the polls and based on what plays out in both houses.

“Aside from the major slots, I think what is paramount to the people of the South-West is the restructuring of the country, which Atiku is very serious about.

“So, the issue for the South-West is not personality or slot issue per say, because personalities come and go, but restructuring Nigeria is significant and more symbolic than zoned offices,” Daniel said.

Meanwhile, Daniel has urged the incumbent governor, Senator Ibikunle Amosun, to do away with personal ego, if he is truly interested in ensuring that an Ogun West candidate emerges his successor in the run up to the 2019 general elections.

 Daniel added that if Amosun wants a Yewa man to be his successor, he shouldn’t allow two candidates to emerge, at a time, so that the votes at the general elections would not be shared between them.

However, the former governor sympathised with the people of Ogun West, having lost the APC governorship ticket to Prince Dapo Abiodun, an Ogun East candidate.

According to him, the next governorship candidate of the state should not be based on sentiment.  He charged the Ogun West people, not to blame the people of Ogun Central and Ogun East for their problems.

“The problem of the Ogun West people is in the hands of the people of Ogun West.

“Ogun East (Remo and Ijebu) is homogeneous in nature, likewise the Ogun Central. They speak the same language. But the same is not applicable in Ogun West district where we have sub ethnic groups, like the Awori, Ketu, Egun, Ohori, Yewa, Eyo, Anago and others.

“Whether we like it or not, the Ogun West people are the minority.

For instance, Ado-Odo/Ota Local Government which falls within the purview of the Awori has the largest population, including the voting patterns, than the four other local governments. And in Ogun West senatorial district, they have five local governments.

Even in Ogun West, they are still saying Imeko is not a full-fledged Yewa town, that it is a minority.

I could recall when I wanted Gboyega Isiaka to succeed me in office in 2011. Isiaka is from Imeko. When I was trying to sell Isiaka to the people of Ogun West they once asked me, “How can they now go to Imeko to pick a governorship candidate, without going to Ilaro, which is the administrative headquarters of Ogun West?

“You need to know where you are and where you are going. “Go and pray, if God says it would happen in Ogun West, so be it.

There is a popular saying that, once an opportunity is lost it can never be regained, but they can still regain it, if they can still work hard and with a lot of prayers”, counseled Daniel.