Loyalists of former Governor Ibikunle Amosun have returned to the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Ogun State and teamed up with the Governor Dapo Abiodun’s faction of the ruling party.
The development is coming after about five years of political infighting between Abiodun and Amosun.
They were led into a meeting by a former Chairman of the APC, Derin Adebiyi, whose tenure was dissolved in 2019 by the truncated Adams Oshiomhole-led APC National Working Committee, for alleged anti-party activities.
Our correspondent gathered that the politicians have Amosun’s blessing to return to the ruling party, having left the APC for the African Democratic Congress (ADC) during the 2023 governorship election.
Amosun had during the election refused to support Abiodun, as he sponsored Biyi Otegbeye to contest against the incumbent in the ADC.
Abiodun received Amosun’s men at the Presidential Lodge, Abeokuta, on Friday.
The governor said: “I want to congratulate your sense of loyalty to leadership, which I will say is not only commendable, it is enviable.
“This is a culture that we must promote and entrench. It is a culture that is fast eroding; it is a culture that we are fast losing. Loyalty is 100 percent.
“For some others, they move once things are not working well, but for you, you stay put. This sense of loyalty is worthy of emulation. We must appreciate the fact that there can only be one leader in a party at a time.
“Even when we have ambitions and desires, we must subordinate ourselves 100% to leadership and believe that it is in that subordination that will allow us to flourish and achieve our objectives, our dreams, our desires and aspirations, not by forming factions or by breaking away.
“Because by so doing, it only weakens the fabric of that collective union that we call our party. You must appreciate that there can be only one leader of the party at a time in the state, and that leader is the governor.
“As the leader of the party, I appreciate the task bestowed on me and it is my duty to work towards individual and collective welfare of our members,” the governor noted.
The governor urged all members to put the past behind them and work towards repositioning the party to achieve its aims and work for the socio-economic development of the state.
“Let us the past behind us. Let us promote what unites us as a family. I welcome you back. The future of Ogun State is in your hands and it is for us for the taking. The same joy the father of the prodigal son received his lost son back home, the same way I receive you today.
“To those who did not leave, please let us receive our brothers and sisters back. To those who are joining us, please let us display a sense of loyalty. I can assure you, you will be fully integrated. ”
The State Chairman of APC, Yemi Sanusi, said in every human relationship, there is bound to be disagreement, adding that even in time of war, there is always a place for peaceful settlement of conflict, calling the returnees to fully integrated themselves with other members of the party.
Leader of the returnees, Adebiyi said they have all agreed to return to the mainstream to contribute to the development of the party and the State in general, thanking the governor and the party members for receiving them back.