The newly appointed Director General of Labour Party Presidential Campaign Council, Akin Osuntokun, has dismissed speculations that he may have lobbied or influenced his appointment.
Osuntokun said on Wednesday that he accepted his new role in the Obi-Datti Campaign Council without religious or ethnic sentiments.
The DG said he brings his wealth of electioneering experience to the LP campaign Council having led the presidential campaign of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) in 2003 and 2007
“Naturally, I feel good about it. I look forward to the new role. It didn’t come to me as a shock. I didn’t lobby for it,” he told THE PUNCH in an interview.
“As the zonal coordinator of the South West and in the hierarchy of the campaign organisation, I am next to the DG of the South West. If we look at it from that perspective, it didn’t come to me as a surprise. That is the simple explanation for that.
“It is not new terrain. I led the 2003 and 2007 presidential elections as a political adviser,” he said.
Osuntokun, an aide to former president Olusegun Obasanjo, said though his new role may come with additional responsibilities, he was equal to the task of taking pressure.
“Of course, so will be the other DGs of other campaigns. Anybody in the campaign hierarchy will necessarily be under pressure until after the election. It is not an armchair position.”
He also spoke on how he would face critics from the South West which is dominated by the All Progressives Congress and supporters of its presidential candidate, Bola Tinubu, for choosing to work with the presidential candidate of Labour Party, Peter Obi.
“We are taking Nigeria away from the culture of sentiments. We are not going to help in perpetuating those primordial sentiments. Being a Yoruba man, Igbo or Fulani should not be a determinant to winning the election this time.
“Otherwise, we will be holding ourselves responsible for all things that have gone wrong in this country. The question should be about competence and antecedents.”
THE WHISTLER reported that Osuntokun was appointed as the DG of the LP campaign council following the resignation of Doyin Okupe after his money laundering conviction.
The National Chairman of the Labour Party, Julius Abure, who announced the appointment on Tuesday, said the decision was reached after wide consultations with party stakeholders across board.
Until his appointment as DG, Osuntokun served as the Zonal Coordinator (South) of the campaign council.