With Or Without Obj's Support,Goodluck Will Win 2015 Election..Ex Minister Ogunlewe

Former Minister of Works, Senator Adeseye Ogunlewe, has urged Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) members across the country not to panic over the frosty relationship between the party and former President Olusegun Obasanjo.
Speaking with Saturday Sun in Lagos, Ogunlewe, who is a top notcher of the party, said President Goodluck Jonathan and PDP will win 2015 elections with or without Obasanjo. “PDP members should not panic. Let any of Obasanjo’s supporters that want to leave the party go. PDP will win 2015 elections without Obasanjo’s support. Elections are not won on individual’s name. It is not about personality, but votes are won through rigorous campaigns, hard-work and party manifesto”, he added.
The former minister also spoke on other national issues including preparations for 2015 elections,  APC and Tinubu, forthcoming elections in Ekiti and Osun states among others in this interview with TUNDE THOMAS. Excerpts:
Some people have expressed concern over the forthcoming gubernatorial elections in Osun and Ekiti states over a recent report credited to the Vice-President, Alhaji Namadi Sambo, that the elections is like going to the war front. How would you react to the Vice-President’s statement, and doubts being expressed that the elections may not be free and fair?
It is unfortunate that some people have misinterpreted the VP’s statement out of context. One thing I like about the Federal Government is President Goodluck Jonathan’s respect for the rule of law. To him and some of us in PDP, we never view politics or elections as a do-or-die affair. Jonathan, more than any other president in the history of this country, has given a free hand to the electoral body, and in this instance, INEC.
The president has never encouraged sharp practices in electoral matters, and this is one of the reasons you see opposition parties winning elections in some states like Edo, Anambra, Nasarawa and Ondo states.
Having said this, I want to categorically state here that PDP will win the elections in those two states. The ACN’s victory in those two states was secured through what I call judicial robbery. We all know what happened, how Justice Ayo Salami cancelled election results in 12 local government areas in Osun State which at the end of the day helped Aregbesola’s cause.
In Ekiti State, the same  judiciary cancelled election result in Ido-Osi which was a PDP stronghold, and this in a way aided Kayode Fayemi’s emergence as Ekiti State governor.
So, what I’m saying here is that both Aregbesola and Fayemi didn’t become governors through popular votes. It was the judiciary that assisted them. In a free and fair election, PDP will win both Ekiti and Osun states. Fayemi and Aregbesola should be preparing their hand-over notes.
In an attempt by PDP to regain control of the South West in 2015 polls, the party set up a mobilization committee headed by Prince Buruji Kashamu, but fears are being expressed that the committee or the party might not succeed in its plan following the frosty relationship between Kashamu  and former President Olusegun Obasanjo, what is your reaction to this?
The mobilization committee set up by the party is working round the clock to secure South West for PDP. Forget Obasanjo for now. Baba’s loyalty to PDP is now in doubt. From his recent actions and comments, it is very obvious that he has a lot of sympathy for the All Progressives Congress (APC). You can see most of his supporters like former Governor Olusegun Oni and others have decamped to APC.
Although some of these decampees from PDP have been saying that their action didn’t have Baba’s approval. But do they think they can deceive anybody? We are not kids, we can’t be fooled. Now that these Obasanjo’s supporters are leaving PDP, it is a welcome development. We are now more comfortable and also doing our work.
Let Obasanjo’s supporters go if they want to go. Nobody is begging them. What most people don’t know is that party members represent only one per cent of the voters. So, you can now see why the defection by Obasanjo’s supporters will have little or no effect on PDP. The party will wax stronger. What we now need to do is to re-strategize and reorganise the party following the departure of Obasanjo’s supporters. We must think of how to move the party forward and forget about Obasanjo. When the Obasanjo’s supporters were in PDP, they wreaked havoc, and this is why I insist that it is better they leave than staying back to destroy PDP.
But some people are saying that with Obasanjo’s clout that PDP’s fortunes will suffer in 2015 elections if genuine reconciliation is not carried out ?
Which clout? Which clout are you talking about? Forget about clout. It is voters that will decide the party’s fate. With or without Obasanjo, PDP will win in 2015. Jonathan will also win 2015 elections if he decides to contest whether Obasanjo supports him or not. Elections are not won by wishes or dependence on a personality, you have to work hard to achieve success. It is hardwork, persuasion and manifesto that you have to sell to the electorate that will convince them whether to vote for you or not. Election winning goes beyond one individual. It is not an individual matter. It goes beyond one individual.
Since 1999, PDP has been in opposition in Lagos State. Now that 2015 is fast approaching, some people are saying that PDP can’t perform any wonder, that the party is dead in Lagos, how would you rate the chance of PDP in Lagos State in 2015 elections?
Let me state this categorically, there has never been an election in Lagos State. ACN, which has now metamorphosed into APC, has always been rigging. APC leaders are master riggers. What Nigerians think are elections in Lagos State are nothing but mere charades. Elections have been manipulated in favour of Action Congress (AC), later known as ACN.
Let me give you an example, in 2003 Atiku and Tinubu joined hands to frustrate PDP in Lagos State, and this was why the party lost. If not for the unpatriotic role played by Atiku, then a PDP strongman, there was no way the party could have lost in 2003. But then Atiku colluded with Tinubu, and the rest, as they say, is now history.
In 2007, PDP lost as a result of this kind of factors. It was the same in 2011. But my appeal to my party members now is that we should all close ranks to frustrate any attempt by APC to manipulate the election. It is the leadership of PDP that has been allowing ACN to win elections in Lagos State. Our leaders should have evolved counter-measures to neutralize APC plots.
I’m using this opportunity to also make an appeal to INEC to be vigilant as 2015 is fast approaching. Politicians are full of so many ideas. As we are talking, some politicians are already devising various strategies on how to rig.
In view of your observation and comments, what are your suggestions for us to have a free and fair elections in 2015?
The starting point for us is to implement Justice Muhammed Uwais report on election reforms. Let everybody first register with the National Identity Card. It will amount to a duplication after having registered with the National ID card for us to have voters card again through registration. Once you have an ID card, it should automatically be your passport to vote.
Let all Nigerians have National ID card right from birth. Apart from its advantage for election purpose, it will also help us plan as a nation. Printing of voters card or its usage gives room for manipulation, and this is why you see some people being arrested for being in possession of voters cards running into hundreds. We are just running blindly as a nation, we must go back to the basics.
It is unfortunate that when most countries have gone digital, we are still on analogue model. We want to conduct an election, yet we don’t have accurate data about the exact number of people in our country. Then how can the election be free and fair?
All politicians rig elections. All politicians are trained to rig elections. We are just pretenders. The bitter truth is that we all rig elections, and this is why INEC must be vigilant so as to block all loopholes that will give room for rigging.
Unless the chances of rigging are limited, the tendency is for politicians to do double and triple registrations. Why can’t somebody be inquisitive. For example, in some places, INEC will announce that they have total number of 300,000 voters, but when election results are declared, you have 600,000 votes being declared, then you ask how come the excess number, it is simple double and triple registrations by politicians. This is what they call multiple registration and nobody has done a research on it. In other countries, they will do research to find out how the excesses come about.
Then again, there is no way to identify a voter. A voter has no identity card, this gives room for manipulation. This makes it possible for a voter to even thumb print 20 times on elelction day, and electoral officers having been compromised will look the other way while ballot boxes are being stuffed with these cards. After carrying out these manipulations, politicians will now announce that they have won elections. This is nothing but rigging. We have not been conducting genuine elections in this country.
The way to do is to computerize the ballot boxes, and voters should also use National ID cards to vote. The number of ballot papers in the box should never be more than the one you have already calibrated when you are punching the cards. But if we rely on the manual process, there will be room for manipulation.
Politicians do steal ballot papers and boxes from electoral officials and they will later resurface with the box stuffed with cards. We must sit down, and carry out extensive research on how to prevent rigging. We must get experts if not we will never have genuine democracy in the country.
Can you believe that in Lagos State during the 2011 elections some politicians printed fake ballot papers, and Lagos State INEC accepted it. PDP was leading in the election in Lagos State but the election was cancelled because they claimed that Labour Party’s name was omitted, but this was a ploy to help ACN which was later declared as the winning party.
But some people believed that ACN now APC’s success in Lagos State can be largely attributed to Bola Tinubu’s popularity …?
(Cuts in) How is Tinubu popular? Where is Tinubu popular? What can Lagosians remember Tinubu for that will make him popular? Is it the property or illegal wealth that he acquired while in office? What do you want to remember Tinubu for? Is it his education programme that was a colossal failure? It was during Tinubu’s time that candidates that enrolled for WAEC/SSCE scored 17 per cent. I stand to be challenged or corrected. Fashola himself at a public function sometime ago said he had been trying to improve this dismal record to 35 per cent. This is an indictment on Tinubu. You can go and check WAEC records.
Tinubu did a lot of harm to Lagos State. How many modern schools with boarding facilities did he build? He was a total failure.
But speaking generally for the nation, we are sitting on keg of gun powder. Millions of jobless graduates and youths are roaming the streets. Government have to do something to arrest the situation.


Chris Kehinde Nwandu is the Editor In Chief of CKNNEWS || He is a Law graduate and an Alumnus of Lagos State University, Lead City University Ibadan and Nigerian Institute Of Journalism || With over 2 decades practice in Journalism, PR and Advertising, he is a member of several Professional bodies within and outside Nigeria || Member: Institute Of Chartered Arbitrators ( UK ) || Member : Institute of Chartered Mediators And Conciliation || Member : Nigerian Institute Of Public Relations || Member : Advertising Practitioners Council of Nigeria || Fellow : Institute of Personality Development And Customer Relationship Management || Member and Chairman Board Of Trustees: Guild Of Professional Bloggers of Nigeria


  1. This man is a political jobber that can not survive ouside government appointment. Talking about jobless graduates, meanwhile, he and his men in PDP are at d helm of affair of d nation and can not provide employment opportunities or enabling envoronment for people to be self employed. What as d state of our federal roads when he was d minister of works. He should burry his head in shame and stop trying to drag OBJ's name into his miserable failure. He can never attain d level God has placed OBJ.

  2. This man just want to get a job.foolish old man.

  3. Ogunlewe is politically dead and Jonathan will soon join him in his political abyss. He should understand that Jonathan is no longer popular among Nigerians and no amount of rigging can return him as president of Nigeria in 2015 . He should collect his fat cheque and sop causing problems for Jonathan . He will. Be given more by saying is the most credible candidate for 2015 than insulting obj who made him who he is today. Ageless fool.

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