Gbenga Daniel, a former governor of Ogun and a chieftain of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, says he is quitting partisan politics, the News Agency of Nigeria reports.
Mr Daniel made this known in a letter dated March 14 and addressed to the National Chairman of the PDP, Uche Secondus, a copy of which was made available to NAN on Saturday.
He stated in the letter that his decision was personal and that he would take on some other vocations and new challenges.
“This is to inform you of my intention to resign from active and partisan politics with effect from today, the 14th day of March, 2019.
“My decision in this regard is entirely personal to me and having served in various capacities, including as governor of Ogun, I have resolved to immerse myself in some other vocations and take on some new challenges,” Daniel stated in the letter.
Daniel recalled in the letter that he joined PDP in Ogun on Sept. 9, 2001 and became the governor of the state on the platform of the party in 2003.
He noted that he served as governor of Ogun for eight years, claiming that his administration remained a point of reference in terms of various forms of positive developments since the creation of the state in 1976.
“I joined the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Ogun on Sunday, September 9, 2001 at an event which was described as one of the most ceremonial political rallies in our recent political history in the South – Western part of Nigeria.
“We rose from that rally to create a highly robust and effective political campaign machinery which resulted in an electoral victory for the Peoples Democratic Party in Ogun in 2003
” This movement and vibration affected the politics of the region positively with a victory in five states of the South-West region.
“I served as governor of Ogun for eight years and our administration till today remains a point of reference in terms of physical, social, economic, educational and human capital development since the state was created in 1976,” he said.
He also recalled that inspite of the achievements of his administration, the PDP experienced some internal disputes toward the end to his rule in 2009 which robbed the party of victory in the 2011 polls.
Daniel expressed regrets that the party had been unable to resolve the internal disputes and challenges 10 years after.
The PDP chieftain noted that the party went into the 2019 elections divided particularly over choice of governorship candidate.
“The PDP in Ogun was confronted with a very difficult situation in matter of choice.
“Whereas the national leadership of our party recognised one candidate for the 2019 governorship election, the court pronounced another candidate, and in compliance, the INEC upheld the court’s order.
” Our situation was then compounded because the candidate which the court and INEC recognised and accepted as valid had earlier been expelled by the party.
This was the dilemma we found ourselves as we approached the March 9, 2019 Governorship and State House of Assembly elections.
” Going forward, we have responded to the yearnings of our people and joined others in emplacing an administration that we believe will better serve the interests of our people than what currently exists.
” I must say that looking back, I do not have any regrets over that patriotic choice and decision, especially as several of our citizens, leaders and stakeholders in the state and outside have commended that singular action.
”Many stakeholders within and outside Ogun feel fulfilled, excited and grateful about our decision to join others in putting a stop to a regime that was believed to be against the collective and general welfare of our people.
“Let me also add that in the last few months, I have had one of the rare privileges of traveling round the entire length and breadth of our great country on at least two occasions.
”The first being during my campaigns to become the National Chairman of our great party, and later as the Director General of the Atiku Presidential Campaign Organization (APCO).
“I must sincerely admit that in the course of all these travels, I have built a network of contacts of friends and associates in a mutually rewarding relationships which I cherished most and greatly too.
“I am therefore persuaded that I have fewer points to make and prove in my political journeys in partisan politics
“My decision to quit partisan politics notwithstanding, I have decided to rejuvenate my charity based organisation, the Gateway Front Foundation (GFF).
”This organisation will literally continue to dispense succor to our people in need, address and assist in the areas of some of their health challenges.
”I also plan on resuscitation of the non-partisan Political Leadership Academy (POLA) which I established some years ago as a platform of political education to our citizens.
”Without doubt, I will miss the company of my friends and associates and all those relationships I built in the course of the years all over the country,” Mr Daniel stated.