Spokesman for the Pro-National Conference Organization (PRONACO) as well as the National Secretary of PROJECT NIGERIA (Nigeria Consensus Group), Chief Olawale Okunniyi says his recent defection to the All Progressive Congress (APC) and reconciliation with Governor Ibikunle Amosun of Ogun State has earned him the odium of some political hawks in the state.
Okunniyi, whose ‘ESOJI 2015’ gubernatorial aspiration under the platform of the re-formed Social Democratic Party (SDP) crashed when the party hierarchy unanimously handed the gubernatorial ticket to Senator Akin Odunsi, has suffered political backlash since he switched to the APC a few days to the governorship election.
Recently, there have been allegations of Okunniyi’s purported wild romance with a popular actress, Bukky Wright who also dabbled into politics recently. According to the unverified reports, the illicit relationship took a messy twist when the actress allegedly switched over to the party leader, Chief Olusegun Osoba, sparking off spiral gossips which infuriated Okunniyi’s wife.
“Okunniyi’s wife confronted her husband for explanation but the Ijebu-born politician had no tangible excuse to cover up for his extra-marital affair”, the report allegedly sponsored by mystery enemy read in parts.
But the Ijebu activist turned politician who contested 2011 Governorship under Congress for Political Change (CPC) told theeconomyng.com that the smear media campaign was handiwork of “people who feel highly threatened that we are back in APC and that we have settled with Governor Ibikunle by that extension”. He insisted that there is no substance to various allegations brought against him by his traducers.
The allegations, he stressed, are politically orchestrated and have no single shred of facts. “There is no love affair between me and Bukky Wright. I only assisted and facilitated her (Bukky Wright) entrance into practical politics because I believed in her talent and nothing more. And we are not even in the same party now; she is still with the SDP,” Okunniyi said.
On the reasons why political hawks are against his defection to APC, Okunniyi claimed they felt threatened due to his closeness with President -elect, General Muhammadu Buhari and Governor Ibikunle Amosun as well as his grassroots followership. “They are apparently jittery because of my association with General Buhari which dates back to 2006. But my message to them is to eschew desperation; let’s all join hands to ensure the requisite stability of the APC both at the Federal and state levels,” he declared.
He urged Nigerians to give the Buhari administration maximum support and cooperation to be able to succeed in putting the Nigerian economy on track through his anti-corruption crusade.
By Olisemeka Obeche