ANALYSIS: Lessons APC must learn from Osun West defeat, By Wale Adedayo

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1. The margin of victory was wide.
2. The spread of the victory was very wide too.

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3. It shows there was, and still anger, beneath the surface of regular support being displayed towards the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Osun State.
Lessons MUST be learnt. Why?
1. The PDP victory in the Osun West Senatorial by-election was not due to anger against the lacklustre performance of President Muhammadu Buhari. Why? APC won decisively in Ondo State.
2. The victory of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) could not be due to the underground division in Osun State APC. A worse and open division preceded the Ondo State election. Yet, APC won.
3. It appears the people are not happy. And the first place to start is reconnection with the same people who defied hooded State Security Service (SSS) officials and soldiers to give Governor Rauf Aregbesola a return ticket for his second term.
4. An overhaul of media machinery (formal and informal) is necessary along with an organisational approach that rewards party faithful for their past and current contributions to electoral success.

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5. I remain firmly convinced that Education and Rural Development remain Governor Aregbesola’s best legacies despite the current challenges. The elites made some successful efforts to rally ordinary people against late Obafemi Awolowo when his programmes began. They could not see beyond their noses. Fortunately, Awo did the needful to correct obvious lapses.
6. Abuja was not only neutral, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) staff too behaved. And INEC staff have every reason to. Some of them with sympathy for APC in the 2015 elections are currently answering questions with the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), which is a very good development for our young democracy.
7. On the whole, kudos to both sides for an electoral battle well-fought. And, congratulations to the PDP, especially those who strategically exploited the death of Senator Isiaka Adeleke to reposition the opposition in the South-West!
Wale Adedayo was political editor of THE PUNCH, and former media aide to ex-Governor Gbenga Daniel.

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