Lai Mohammed Can’t Win Election In His Ward In Kwara — AbdulRazaq

Lai Mohammed Can’t Win Election In His Ward In Kwara — AbdulRazaq

The Governor of Kwara state, North Central Nigeria, AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq says the Minister of Information and Communication, Lai Mohammed can’t win an election in his ward in the state.

Lai Mohammed and AbdulRazaq have been at loggerheads since the inauguration of the latter as governor of the state.

The fight between the two leaders has resulted in division in the Kwara APC.

In July, Mohammed, during the inauguration of a new state secretariat in Ilorin, said the party entered “one chance” by supporting the candidacy of Abdulrazaq in 2019.

Mohammed said he raised a major part of the funds for the 2019 elections in the state, which the APC won by a landslide, clearing all the Senate, house of representatives and assembly seats.

The AbdulRazaq and Mohammed factions held parallel Congress on saturday during the APC state congresses which held across the nation.

The Mohammed’s faction returned the suspended Acting caretaker committee Chair Bashir Bolarinwa as the state chairman.

Similarly, the AbdulRazaq’s faction which included 7 out of the 8 federal lawmakers, 15 out of the 16 state lawmakers elected prince Sunday Fagbemi as the state chairman.

AbdulRazaq in an interview with THISDAY, said Mohammed did not fund his campaign and that he planned the campaign himself with donations from friends.

He further accused Mohammed of “hijacking” the donations made for his campaign in 2019.

AbdulRazaq added that Mohammed stayed in Abuja and did not know how the election went in Kwara.

He said, “We started in 1998. Where was Lai Mohammed in 1998? He was in Lagos. He came in 2003 to contest and went back. The other guy that was shouting was with Saraki. We remained here deliberately. We did not ask for anybody’s structure.

“Our goal was to change the system in the state. It was not until 2011, that we found ourselves in the ACN, but then ACN belonged to Asiwaju and Lai Mohammed was his front man here so since they had their candidate.

“We said let’s do free and fair primaries, but they refused. Eventually, they threw us out and picked their own candidate. We moved to CPC.

“Lai Mohammed that is out there shouting didn’t have anybody. So we came and took over the party and we were in two factions, but we overwhelmed them. From the first meeting, I just knew the direction we were going.

“They called us for a meeting in Abuja and after the meeting, they set up a committee for Kwara.

“Oshiomhole was there, a working committee member, the deputy chairman of north and south were both there.

“They announced that the chairman for the committee for Kwara would be Niyi Adebayo. The deputy chairman south. It looked odd because Kwara was considered part of the North. When you give me Adebayo then there is a southern game being played.

“We understood that and then we now saw Lai being the minister, the highest person in political office, he too taking charge.

“Everything that was donated, Lai Mohammed did not declare to the party, or to me. Some were direct donations to me.

“Some were sent to Kwara APC but there’s no governor, no minister. He was sitting there in Abuja, he did not know how we held the election.

“He did not know how we campaigned. He was in Abuja. Ask Minister Lai Mohammed, how many times he comes to Kwara? Our two ministers don’t come to Kwara. They are in Abuja. Both of them. Lai goes to Lagos. That’s his home.

“That’s where his son is a member of the Lagos state house of assembly. That’s where his family is. He has no house here. He doesn’t come here. As our minister, he doesn’t come home. Same with Gbemi Saraki. She doesn’t come. So it’s like we don’t have a minister.

“That’s why the pressure is on the governor. In other states, you have ministers relieving that pressure. Everything coming to the state, they stay in Abuja and hijack it. They are running from one ministry to the other to try and hijack things from Abuja. In terms of resources, they just took everything.

“They’re noisy in the media, not on ground. Lai cannot win an election in his ward. They’re good with social media noise. That’s all they do. But nobody’s asking how each member of the state assembly emerged. How did they manipulate their way to win their seats?

“There was no godfather, putting people in place, everybody struggled to emerge. We would network and work with each other. No godfather. Everybody struggled in their own way. Yes, I gave money, and they also sourced money for themselves.

“So everybody struggled to win this thing. But some people will sit down and say that it is their party. It is this or that, that I don’t have anybody. If I don’t have anybody, I have all the legislators with me. Is that not something? Let them tell me, they have people.

“How many legislators do they have both in the state and national assembly on their side? It’s just a whole lot of media hype. Lai came a few months ago to make noise that he sponsored the campaign, did this and that. He made a lot of noise and pushed it to NTA.”

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