The Oyo State Governor, Seyi Makinde is contesting for a second term in office under the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the 2023 election.
Makinde’s move to remain in office, however, might be threatened by the crisis rocking the main opposition party.
Governor Makinde and other members of the G-5 are working against the presidential candidate of the party, Atiku Abubakar.
The Oyo State Governor is the only first-term governor in the group. Other members: Nyesom Wike (Rivers), Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi (Enugu), Okezie Ikpeazu (Abia) and Samuel Ortom (Benue) are in their second-term in office.
Although Ortom, Ugwuanyi and Ikpeazu are contesting for a seat in the Senate, Makinde’s ambition is the most threatened considering the dynamics of Oyo politics.
The State has different political gladiators, hence making it difficult for a politician to lay claim to power in the State. Makinde defeated the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the 2019 election due to a coalition of gladiators.
Some leaders in PDP in the State, including a former Minister of Mines and Steel Development, Wole Oyelese, and a former Minister of State for FCT, Olajumoke Akinjide, have declared support for Atiku, despite Makinde’s stand.
An Ibadan-based political affairs commentator, Rasheed Olanrewaju in a chat with Daily Trust said if the crisis in PDP is not well-managed; the opposition might take advantage of the situation to take over the state.
He said, “Seyi and his advisers need to think through their actions. It is a dicey situation. If Tinubu wins the presidential election, the momentum might favour APC in the state, especially those PDP leaders working for Atiku who might work against the governor to pay him back.
“If Atiku wins without Seyi’s support, it is also dicey because the APC candidate, Teslim Folarin still enjoys a good relationship with some leaders in the PDP, where he was until 2017. So they can decide to work for him and negotiate his return to the party after the poll, ensuring PDP still controls the state. Some PDP stalwarts are already campaigning for him.”