The Ondo State government has condemned a statement credited to former deputy governor and All Progressives Congress (APC) chieftain Ali Olanusi.
It described the statement as “a mix of mischief and double speak”.
Reports had said Olanusi purportedly condemned the adoption of indirect primary by the state APC ahead of next year’s general elections.
But a statement by the Commissioner for Information and Orientation, Yemi Olowolabi, noted that Olanusi’s statement was “intricately woven to misinform, mislead and manipulate sacred facts to achieve clearly perverted political goals”.
The government said: “Our attention has been drawn to reports credited to …Alhaji Olanusi, who purportedly condemned the adoption of indirect primary by the state chapter of the APC ahead of next year’s general elections. This report smells like a mix of mischief and doublespeak intricately woven to misinform, mislead and manipulate sacred facts to achieve clearly perverted political goals.
“For the record, Alhaji Olanusi was not only present but also actively participated at the Ondo State APC Executive Committee meeting on September 5, where stakeholders unanimously adopted indirect primary to select the party’s candidates for the 2019 general elections.
“In fact, Olanusi actually set the tone for the debate, which culminated in the rejection of direct primary with his personal story: ‘I joined the APC 48 hours to the presidential election in 2015. Up till now, I don’t have APC membership card. You can then imagine, if, as a senior member of the party, I don’t have a membership card. What then is the fate of other people who are members of the party?’”
The government faulted Olanusi’s stand, especially describing direct primary as “a recipe for confusion since the party was not yet prepared for all requirements of direct primary”.
It added: “Other speakers toed this line of reasonable thought and consequently agreed to go with indirect option.
“From the foregoing, therefore, it is inconceivable for the highly respected politician to turn around and condemn the collective decision of Ondo State APC stakeholders, including himself.
“For the avoidance of doubt, Alhaji Olanusi’s seminal and illustrative contributions at APC State Executive Committee (SEC) substantially helped in arriving at the final decision to dump the direct primary.”