By Taiwo Adebowale
The Lagos State Governorship Candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the March 9, 2019 general elections, Mr Jimi Agbaje, has refuted report that he had left the party.
In a statement by issued and circulated by his Director of Media and Publicity, Mr Felix Oboagwina, Mr Agbaje said he was still in PDP and nobody could force him out.
The two-time Lagos PDP governorship candidate said such insinuations that he had left the party must be from “mischief-makers who are determined to soil his reputation, provoke crisis within the party and dampen the spirit of party members and his supporters”.
“I have never discussed with anyone any plan to dump PDP, neither has such a prospect crossed my mind.
“There is no reason for it. It is uncalled for,” he said.
Agbaje said, “I’ll remain in the party, despite the campaign of calumny being waged against him in the media by a few leaders”.
“I only on Monday released a message encouraging members to rise above the questionable defeats suffered in the last election and maintain faith in the party”, Mr Agbaje added.
“It will therefore be contradictory for me to suddenly turn tail and flee the same party.
“For a party that has twice accorded me the honour of running on its platform, I should be regarded as uncharitable to say I am abandoning PDP now,” Agbaje said.
Continuing, Agbaje declared that “the recent vituperation in the press and social media against my person and role in the last election were the machinations of political “featherweights””.
Agbaje said he was having issues with some party leaders because he disbursed campaign funds to candidates as instructed, contrary to the Lagos PDP tradition of sharing money to them.
“The era of taking a share of what is not ours must stop in our party.
“The bitterness is from those who find it difficult to believe that money can be channeled without a ‘cut’ being taken. Leaders must lead by example,” he said.
“I relinquished the management of my firm, Jaykay Pharmacy Ltd. in 2005 into the post of non-executive Chairman and neither the company nor I handled any contract from any State or Federal Government.
“I am not a mole for the All Progressives Congress (APC) or its National Leader, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, both of whom suffered from the butt of my campaign.
“My campaigns have been very clear on where the blame of bad governance in Lagos State should lie.
“It baffles me how the same people I hold responsible for the bondage we find ourselves in Lagos will be funding me to sabotage my party, PDP.
“I have never collected a single kobo from the ruling party in Lagos State directly or indirectly nor from its leadership or representatives.
“Party leaders who stood on the sidelines or worked against the party in the elections should not be fooled that the loss at the elections was as a result of their negative actions.
“They should not arrogate to themselves powers they do not have.
“The elections were lost due to the intimidation of people which in turn led to voter apathy, such that Lagos recorded the lowest percentage turnout in the country,” Mr Agbaje said.