Adelani Adepegba and Peter Dada
The Labour Party has rejected the plan by former Ondo State Governor, Olusegun Mimiko, to rejoin the party which he left in 2014 to join the Peoples Democratic Party.
This came on the heels of Mimiko’s resignation on Wednesday from the PDP.
It was learnt that the ex-governor had sent his letter of resignation to the leadership of the PDP in Ondo State with the intention to go back to his former party, the LP.
In the letter addressed to the state leadership of the PDP on Wednesday and obtained by The PUNCH, Mimiko said his decision to leave the party was personal to him.
The letter read in part, “I hereby with utmost humility inform you of my decision to resign my membership of the PDP with effect from today, June 13, 2018, for some well-thought-out personal reasons.
“It was an honour working with the many prominent Nigerians with whom I shared the PDP platform for the entire period I was in there as a member. Accept please the assurance of my very high regards”
One of our correspondents further learnt that Mimiko would today join the Labour Party in his hometown, Ondo, but without many of his aides who have remained in the PDP.
However, the Labour Party described Mimiko’s defection plan as an ill-fated adventure, adding that his intention was to “use the LP to launder his sagging political image.”
The LP National Chairman, Mike Omotosho, who addressed a news conference in Abuja, on Wednesday, noted that Mimiko planned to destabilise the gains being made by the workers to reclaim and reposition the Labour Party.
He recalled that the former governor abandoned the party a few days to its national convention in October 2014.
“Such a treachery and betrayal of a party that gave the former governor succour in the darkest hour of his political career, especially as manifested in his two-term victory on the ticket of the Labour Party, is to say the least cheap and callous.
“It also revealed the paucity of knowledge of the philosophy of the Labour Party as a peoples’ rooted party and the dearth of class consciousness on his part,” Omotosho stated.
He added that the LP is an offspring of the working class family and was midwifed by the labour movement, stating that “political journeypersons like the former governor of Ondo had in the past taken advantage of the leadership challenges in the Labour Party to satisfy their fantasies for political opportunism.”
The chairman explained that the labour movement, in alliance with its civil society partners and other patriotic Nigerians, were poised to fully reclaim the Labour Party and restore it as a model political institution that does not only epitomise the values of the working class family but also capable of contesting for power “with members of a failed political class, with whom the former governor dines and wines.”
Omotosho said, “Right now, the Labour Party is pre-occupied with strategic re-positioning aimed at re-energising our capacity for issue-based politics and ideologically driven political contestations.
“We urge politicians like the former governor of Ondo State to stay clear of the new Labour Party because we are aware of their gimmicks to lure the Labour Party in the direction of other political parties with the hope of rehabilitating their dwindling political relevance.”
Meanwhile, the Labour party has said that it has no candidate in the forthcoming governorship election in Ekiti State.
“The Labour Party has no candidate in the governorship election in Ekiti State. lNEC workers and the Ekiti electorate should not allow themselves to be hoodwinked by the antics of political impostors,” the party warned.
The Ondo State Chairman of the PDP, Mr. Clement Faboyede, said Mimiko’s exit from the party could not have any negative impact, saying the party was waxing stronger on daily basis.
“Mimiko is a human being; he has the right to his opinion. We have tried at all levels to discourage him but he insisted on leaving. One thing I know is that PDP will not die as he (Mimiko) leaves. We have survived many turbulent times in the past, so if he goes it can’t affect us negatively,” Faboyede added.
All rights reserved. This material, and other digital content on this website, may not be reproduced, published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed in whole or in part without prior express written permission from PUNCH.