The Chairman of the Organisation and Mobilisation Committee of the Peoples Democratic Party in the South West and sole financier of PDP in Ogun State, Prince Buruji Kashamu on Sunday vowed that no amount of criticism or attack on his person by former President Olusegun Obasanjo will deter him from supporting President Goodluck Jonathan’s re-election in 2015.
Kashamu also said that the recent letters written by Mr. Obasanjo in which he made reference to him had only made him even more popular.
Speaking with newsmen at the end of an emergency meeting of the state chapter of the party held in his Ijebu-Igbo country home, Kashamu accused Obasanjo of alleged plan to “hijack” him from mobilizing the people of the South West zone for Jonathan in the 2015 election.
The former president had written a letter to the National Chairman of PDP, Alhaji Bamanga Tukur and President Jonathan informing them of his decision to withdraw his activities from the party at all levels following the imposition of Kashamu, who he described as a wanted fugitive abroad, as the leader of the party in the Southwest.
But according to the man at the eye of the storm, “You ought to know the strategy of Obasanjo that he [Obasanjo] wanted to hijack me from Jonathan, that if I don’t support Jonathan in South West, the South West would be easier for them. How many times has he called me? How many times Obasanjo has sent people to me that why am I so stubborn? Many that he had sent, I did not answer them because I am not a betrayer.
“When I love somebody and believe in the leadership of somebody, whatever happens I accept that I will go with the person. I believe in the leadership of Jonathan, I believe in the government of Jonathan and in his transformation agenda and I believe in his wise management”.
He further stressed that no one could stop him from his continued support for the president’s reelection bid in 2015.
“It’s only Jonathan that can open his mouth and say don’t support me again. What I’m doing is for the party, for Jonathan and the country. Jonathan is a good president, he is loyal to Nigeria, he’s a complete gentleman, transparent and a believer in due process. We are ready to go the extra mile in delivering the South West to him.
“You know when it comes to mobilizing the people, I’m a grassroots person. I’ve already opened offices all over the South West. In Ogun State over two million registered in the last election but only 400,000 voted. In each state, I have registered in my data over 20,000 supporters. Tell me which grassroots does Obasanjo have? The last election we did, they beat him flat. I have 80 per cent of PDP leaders in Ogun”, Kashamu said.
The Ogun PDP chieftain, however, said that he was unperturbed by Obasanjo’s continued attack, saying rather than rubbish his personality as envisaged by the former president, it has rather made him more popular.
“When I heard yesterday (Saturday) about Obasanjo’s latest letter, I started dancing that my popularity has gone up again. I never knew I could become this popular until Obasanjo started his series of letters. Obasanjo would mention my name in his letters and the president too in his reply”, he said.
Kashamu also vowed to continue to oppose Obasanjo’s alleged penchant for imposing his loyalists on party members in the South West zone.
“The same strategies we have been using in Ogun we have taken to Osun, Oyo, Lagos and others”, he said.