Segun Showunmi, a Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) governorship aspirant in Ogun State, has said there is no division in the party and expressed belief that all stakeholders and members will accept the verdict of the court on its flag-bearer ahead of the poll.
The PDP’s Primary Electoral Committee in Ogun State had in May declared Oladipupo Adebutu, a former member of the House of Representatives, as the party’s governorship candidate in the state, while Showunmi emerged as the governorship candidate in a parallel primary held by a faction of the party.
Showunmi, who was the spokesperson of Atiku Abubakar during the 2019 presidential election, expressed optimism that he would be on the ballot in the governorship election in Ogun State.
He said the Court of Appeal in Abuja had given a consequential order dismissing the ruling of a lower court over jurisdiction to hear the suit between him, the PDP and others.
Addressing news editors at a press briefing in Lagos on Tuesday, he said his campaign ahead of the governorship race would fully commence on September 28, adding that his style would be issues-based aimed at transforming Ogun State.
While reiterating his acceptance of party supremacy both at the national and state levels, Showunmi described the primary election conducted by the Adebutu camp as “a charade”, saying it would not stand.
“The primary election that produced me as candidate followed all the extant laws of the country and in due season, they will definitely come to the point they have to come to,” he said.
Insisting that the PDP in Ogun State was not factionalised, he said: “A political party is the creation of the law and what makes a political party have the right to even claim it is a political party is its constitution and the grand law which is the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. No legally created organ can be given the wherewithal to act as if it doesn’t know that it is a creation of the law.
“So, as it concerns supposed recognition here and there, don’t worry, they will recognise everything that needs to be recognized. Like you are well aware that the Court of Appeal has given us the first favourable judgment, I trust that we will be fine.”
Showunmi stressed the need for Nigerians to focus on subnational governments.
He said: “I feel that over the years, we have been satisfied with criticising the Federal Government and demanding things from the Federal Government without a commensurate desire to do the same at the state.
“If we could just pay more attention to what is going on in our state, then invariably, we will be cleaning the space from where we are standing. I expect that, going forward, if I become the Governor of Ogun State, I expect that it will be a completely different paradigm and that’s why I am running on a new deal.”
“For a south-western state, for instance, I have become convinced that one of the ways for us to reduce the number of out-of-school children is to pay attention to the foundational issue of early education,” Showunmi added.