A leader of the All Progressives Party (APC) in Ikeja area of Lagos, who is also the party’s Deputy Chairman in the state, Cardinal James Odunmbaku aka Baba Eto appears to have lost out in the scheme of things in the nation’s leading opposition party.
Sources within the party alleged that Odunmbaku, who used to hold sway in the party, is losing his grip in the party over issues bothering on greed and betrayal.
Those close to him said that Odunmbaku used to enjoy close relationship with Governor Aregbesola before things fell apart between the two political gladiators recently, which allegedly caused the Governor to disgrace Odunmbaku out of the Osun State Government House in Osogbo, adding that their friendship got to a climax recently over what is termed greed and open betrayal.
It was gathered that prior to the August 9, 2014 Governorship election, which Governor Aregbesola eventually won, Odunmbaku had several secret meetings with Chief Bode George, who happens to be a leading figure in the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the South West, as he was convinced that Aregbesola’s main contender and PDP’s Candidate in the election, Senator Iyiola Omisore would win the election.
“If you recall, days to the election, when the APC had practically moved its machinery to Osun, Odunmbaku was conspicuously absent in the state,” said a source.
Those close to the party also divulged that the Celestial Church Pastor made away with N200 Million allegedly contributed by some Lagos council boss to support Governor Aregbesola for the election.
It was learnt that the greed of the popular preacher and politician, who had been a political godfather to many people in the party, has finally ended the once robust relationship between him and Governor Aregbesola.
Sources divulged that Cardinal Odunmbaku had gone to Osun State to see his friend in his usual manner, but it was revealed that Governor Aregbesola, who had been briefed about the elderly man’s secret dealings and greed, called his bluff and made it clear that he was not wanted in the Osun Government House.
This allegedly got to Odunmbaku as a surprise and he was said to have left the state in shame and disgrace as such had never happen to him in the past.
In like manner, Cardinal Odunmbaku, who had been enjoying father-son relationship with a member of the Federal House of Representatives from Ikeja, Lagos, Hon. Abiodun Faleke has reportedly overstepped his bounds causing the latter to disowning him as his political father.
We learnt that Hon. Faleke had been taking care of Cardinal Odunmbaku even before he joined politics and that this continued when Faleke became the Chairman of Ojodu Local Council Development Area (LCDA) and later a member of the House of Reps.
“Odunmbaku is greedy, Hon. Faleke used to see him as a father, which was why he went straight to his church in Ojodu, when he received his certificate of return from INEC after the 2011 elections that took him to the Federal House of Reps even before he went to see Asiwaju Bola Tinubu. Their relationship had been long. But, prior to Hon. Faleke’s second term bid, Cardinal Odunmbaku had been going round to say Faleke did not do anything for him. Meanwhile, four or five of his children got jobs through Faleke apart from the fact that Faleke used to send things to him as his political godfather,” said our source.
The source maintained that Faleke had been resisting calls by people to join issues with Cardinal Odunmbaku as many of them had discovered that the acclaimed man of God was not dealing with him with an open mind.
The matter, however got to a climax when it was allegedly discovered that Odunmbaku was trying to upstage Faleke in the election of party delegates for the forthcoming primaries of the APC from Ojodu LCDA .
“Odunmbaku went to the extent of telling people like Asiwaju Bola Tinubu that they had elected delegates for the party primaries and that Hon. Faleke had lost out, but the leaders of the APC insisted that they should do normal primaries and with this, Faleke was able to have an upper hand in the area as his people were chosen as delegated,” the source added.
We were further informed that Cardinal Odunmbaku is now running from pillar to post to seek help as he might be shown the way out of the party the way the whole matter is turning out.
However, another reliable source informed us that the party leaders would eventually settle for Hon. Faleke to seek a second term in office at the party primaries as his major contender, who happens to be a sister to the wife of Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, Senator Remi, Hon. Lola Akande from Ikeja Constituency 2, who is the Deputy Leader of the Lagos State House of Assembly, has been told to step down from the race and wait for political appointment.