Posted by By Lanre Banjo on
I am hardly surprised at the tissues of fables published on Page 22 of THISDAY May 31, 2005 in an article titled “Behind the Changing Face of Ogun” written by Ndubuisi Ugah who was probably among the journalists invited by Gbenga Daniel, the rigged-in governor of Ogun State.
I am hardly surprised at the tissues of fables published on Page 22 of THISDAY May 31, 2005 in an article titled “Behind the Changing Face of Ogun” written by Ndubuisi Ugah who was probably among the journalists invited by Gbenga Daniel, the rigged-in governor of Ogun State. Only God can tell how much Daniel is spending on propaganda just to belch out fabrications about his performance in Ogun State so that he can come back in 2007 to engage in aluta continua maladministration. I have chosen to ignore those lies but I cannot afford to allow the soiling of my name by rulers who suffer from the twin problem of lack of credibility and moral bankruptcy. The third paragraph of Ugah’s article reads thus:
“And when Daniel was to settle to work, came the legal distraction. The governorship candidate of the National Conscience Party (NCP), Ogbeni Lanre Banjo had gone to court to institute a suit, challenging Daniel’s victory. Naturally, this slowed down operation even though Daniel did not appear dazed.
“However, on June 27, 2003, a remarkable event was registered in the nation’s political history. On that date, the Ogun State Election Petition Tribunal nullified the petition of the National Conscience Party (NCP) gubernatorial candidate in the state, Ogbeni Lanre Banjo, on grounds that the petitioner (Banjo) did not comply with statutory provisions of the Electoral Act in his petition against the electoral victory of Governor Gbenga Daniel.
Banjo’s petition was discarded on the basis that the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) failed to put his name forward as NCP gubernatorial candidate. That ruling opened the floor of development for the state. As the Daniel’s administration, ever since the ruling, has continued to progress despite the avalanche of criticisms against his government.”
The truth of the matter is that the national body of the NCP under the leadership of our former Chairman and founder of the party, Chief Gani Fawehinmi, SAN, resolved at a meeting not to challenge the massively rigged election in Court. Consequently, none of the NCP candidates fielded in the 36 states of the federation went to Court, and I did not go to court to institute a suit challenging the genuine victory Daniel never had. Had I gone to court, the Chambers of Chief Gani Fawehinmi would have handled the case and as usual, it would have attracted both international and national media, given the do or die tactics General Olusegun Obasanjo employed to ensure illegitimate victory for his cohorts in Ogun State.
Daniel said that my petition was discarded on the basis that the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) failed to put my name forward as NCP gubernatorial candidate. How could INEC that certified my participation in the election and allocated some votes to me fail to put my name forward as a candidate? As soon as I was head-butted by the PDP, I left the country in May 2003 to resume my professional duty with my brain in the whirlwind, pitying Nigerians about the rough roads they were about to embark on, hopefully, till 2007.
Daniel and his fellow handymen at the helm of affairs in Ogun State should provide the public the answers to the following to corroborate their prevarications:
Who were the Judges at the Tribunal?
Who represented me at the Tribunal?
Who represented Daniel himself at the Tribunal?
Which media covered the hearing?
Since they are in control of the government machinery, can Daniel please make my petition public?
What relief(s) did I ask for?
What date was the matter heard, at which venue and the case number
In spite of the judgment of the Court of Appeal on General Buhari’s case on Ogun State elections, one would have expected Daniel to bury his head in the sand like an ostrich rather than his conspicuous display of bravado and braggadocio.
I had purposely waited for over a week for a retraction, assuming it was a mistake on the part of those who fed the journalist with fables. Given his antecedents, the lack of retraction buttresses my conviction that Daniel is reinforcing his abracadabra against 2007.
Prior to the 419 election of 2003, Daniel sponsored a poll supposedly conducted by a non-existing management outfit to alert the world that he was arriving in an illegal style. Between March 18 and early April of 2003, Daniel began to publish the result of the polls. Pages 20 and 21 of the Sunday Tribune of March 23, 2003 showed the result of the poll, ward by ward and local government by local government, and signed by Jack Mit Ovuorie. The poll predicted that Daniel would win the election by 63% of the votes, the incumbent Governor Olusegun Osoba would score 35% while the remaining 2% would be distributed to the rest of us. It is interesting to notice that the actual declared result of the elections matched the poll, ward by ward and local government by local government. Daniel was allocated 63% of the result as predicted by the astrologer-polling company. Since 2003 the polling company has not conducted any poll, which suggested that it was only established for Daniel. These are the characters of the scum some journalists are shining in Ogun State.
Daniel admitted that he spent almost a billion in addition to the allocation of money from the PDP to be rigged in as the Governor of Ogun State. According to him, he has a company that sells and repairs elevators. The total number of elevators in the entire geographic expression called Nigeria is not more than 2000. His company is not the only one that sells and repairs elevators in Nigeria. The source of his money should be a matter of interest for our friend Nuhu Ribadu of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).
The case of the badly rigged council elections was litigated by the strong ANPP members in Ipokia and is still before Justice Femi Mabekoje of High Court Ilaro with judgment expected to be delivered any moment from now.
Sometime last year, he sponsored an article in the FAME magazine supposedly to debase me. He claimed that I am an apprentice of the former Mayor of Washington, D.C., U.S.A., the Honorable Marion S. Barry who was convicted of inhaling white powder. Well, I am proud to be a friend, brother and an apprentice of Marion Barry. I urge Daniel to smoke, in addition to selling cocaine and give privileges Marion Barry gave to black people in Washington, D.C. to my people in Ogun State. Mr. Barry empowered black people, while Nigerian rulers make the masses of our people beggars. The poorest black person in Washington, D.C. does not have to lock himself inside his house like the richest in Nigeria. Several rich men sleep behind bars every night and release themselves every morning. The poorest black person in Washington, D.C. is not programmed to take pittance for votes. He has a job if he wants it. He has access to telephone, ambulance, health, electricity, affordable public housing, and can call his government to order with his vote. I wish I could say that of Daniel’s Ogun State.
Daniel lied against Chief Osoba that he sponsored the student unrest in Ilaro which he crookedly dubbed an assassination attempt. After Chief Osoba’s arrest, Daniel was invited by police to give a statement. He refused to honour the police invitation despite all the noise and fabrication he made that his attack was an assassination attempt. He opted to engage the royal fathers who were singing hosanna to Chief Osoba when he was on the throne and now hailing Daniel, to settle their matters outside the Court. Daniel is always complaining to Editors or Publishers of Newspapers whenever I grant interviews. He claims that those publishing any opposing views to his misrule are against his government. If Daniel is doing as well as is being deceptively presented in the media, why is he spending so much money on propaganda and harassing the opposition? This is why I advise my friends in the media to go beyond the tissue of lies that Daniel wants them to give credence to and do a little investigative reporting. What they would unearth is bound to shock them but save the future of our children, Ogun State in particular and Nigeria in general.
Ogbeni Banjo was the governorship candidate of the National Conscience Party (NCP) in Ogun State in 2003
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