There is tension in the Ekiti State chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) following the endorsement of the state Chairman, Chief Bisi Kolawole, as the governorship candidate by former Governor, Mr. Ayo Fayose ahead of the 2022 governorship poll.
DAILY POST gathered on Sunday that Fayose communicated Kolawole’s endorsement to members of his political platform, Osoko People’s Assembly (OPA) at a meeting held at his Afao Ekiti country home and the development is causing ripples in the party.
The anointing of Kolawole was an indication that Fayose has abandoned former Governor Segun Oni, who recently made an open declaration; 2018 governorship candidate, Prof Olusola Eleka and 2018 deputy governorship candidate, Mr. Deji Ogunsakin, who was believed to be the favourite for the ticket before the latest development.
The issue became a major topic of discourse on many social media platforms Saturday night with many concerned PDP warning against another imposition saying similar action cost the party victory at the 2018 governorship election.
Kolawole was in the Third House of Assembly where he represented Efon Constituency between 2007 and 2011. He also served under Fayose as Commissioner for Environment between 2015 and 2018.
Pictures of Fayose’s visit to Kolawole’s residence in Efon where he further gave reasons why he anointed him as the next PDP flag bearer later surfaced on the social media Saturday evening.
A source told DAILY POST that a former House of Assembly member criticised the choice of Kolawole expressing surprise at the sudden turnaround at the Afao meeting after Fayose had earlier directed them to work for Ogunsakin.
Fayose was said to have tongue-lashed the ex-lawmaker for daring to challenge his authority as a former governor and leader of OPA.
The choice of Kolawole has further polarised the party that is battling a raging factional crisis between the OPA group loyal to Fayose and the Repositioning Group loyal to the lawmaker representing Ekiti South in the Senate, Senator Biodun Olujimi.
The Olujimi faction led by Hon. Kehinde Odebunmi has taken the battle to the Supreme Court after the High Court and the Appeal Court had validated the Fayose faction led by Hon. Kolawole.
Fayose’s public show of support for Kolawole’s candidacy has divided PDP members with some of them hailing the action while other criticised Fayose for attempting to impose a candidate ahead of the party’s primary.
While some threw their weight behind Kolawole, others maintained that it was premature for the ex-governor to jump the gun in a bid to foist his crony on the party warning of a repeat of the 2018 loss to the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) which they partly blamed on alleged imposition of Eleka.
But Fayose in a social media post justified the reason why he settled for Kolawole describing him as “eminently qualified” for the party’s gubernatorial ticket.
The ex-governor however clarified that there would be a primary for all aspirants who show interest in the PDP ticket ahead of the 2022 governorship election in Ekiti.
Fayose said: “I painstakingly elect to support Bisi Kolawole because he is eminently qualified, a rallying point and a bridge builder. But it is still an open race for all aspirants.
“In due course, the party will conduct primary for them all. However, for me today, it is Bisi Kolawole for Governor.
“To my Political ‘Sons’ (Aspirants) and followers of the Osoko Political Assembly, it could have been ‘you’ but the will of God be done. Your time too will surely come.
“As a leader, I reserve the right to a choice and decision to which I have humbly made.”
Fayose’s media aide, Lere Olayinka, reacting to a question by a social media user on why Fayose abandoned Eleka, Olayinka said: “Abeg carry your Oyinbo giramatika go sleep.
“I respect Prof Kolapo Olusola Eleka so much and I won’t say anything against him here.
“But on this one, we that chose Eleka in 2018 have chosen Bisi Kolawole for 2022.
“In 2018, Prof Eleka was not the most brilliant, he got the ticket.”
Reacting to Kolawole’s choice in another WhatsApp post, Ogunsakin, said the action has ended his ambition to run for the governorship seat in the 2022 poll.
He said: “I just spoke with my darling egbon and the chairman of our great party PDP, Hon Bisi Kolawale to congratulate him as the news of his emergence reached me through sources I have utmost respect for.
“I want to say without mincing words that Bisi K is a fine gentleman and decent family man that I have so much regard for. If I was chosen he would’ve stood solidly behind me and of course I’ll do same for him.
“While thanking my friends, well wishers and family members for your support thus far, this is where our journey as regards governorship race ends in fulfilment of the promise we made to our leader HE Ayo Fayose and entire leadership of OPA that we will abide by the instruction of the group in the collective interest of all and sundry.
“Please note, I’m not available for any negative discussions. Thank you. God bless OPA. God bless PDP.”
Meanwhile, the PDP in Efon Local Government, Kolawole’s council area of origin has hailed his choice by Fayose describing it as “the best decision.”
According to a statement by the Efon PDP LG Chairman, Hon. Oluyemi Ajanaku, Kolawole is the man needed for the transformation of Ekiti State.
“No doubt, the declaration of interest on Hon. Bisi Kolawole by Gov. Ayodele Fayose remains the best decision as the preferred choice (Hon. Bisi Kolawole) is quite experienced, disciplined, and indeed equipped with the needed transformation potential and know-how for the revival of our state; especially at this time; when things have fallen apart.
“Thanks to the God fearing Oshokomole; the leader of our great party, for the kind consideration, confidence and trust which has been painstakingly bestowed on our son.
“On this, we promise total display of support, loyalty and intensive modern campaign; particularly on the victory of our choice candidate.”
#EndSARS: Kingsley Moghalu advises Nigerian youth to get involved in politics
Prof. Kingsley Moghalu, a former presidential candidate in the 2019 general elections, has advised youth in the country to join politics.
Moghalu said he stands in solidarity with the youth in their calls for the end of police brutality and bad governance in the country.
The former Deputy Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, also decried the apparent impotence of Nigerian security agencies in the face of killer herdsmen and bandits and their quick response to quash peaceful protests.
The economist, however, pointed out that the #EndSARS protests, which Ordinarily represent a welcome awakening of Nigerian youth against bad governance, will not be enough to solve the problem of bad governance in the country.
He said that the best protest against underperforming governments in a democratic setting is the one at the ballot box, using the Permanent Voters Card (PVC).
In a statement he personally signed and made available to reporters in Abuja at the weekend, Moghalu noted that what Nigerians want at this point in time is a better governed country that creates real opportunities for our youth, who make up 65 percent of it’s population of 200 million.
The former Deputy CBN Governor said that the future of Nigeria is bleak if the current trends of rising poverty, low-skilled youth, a dysfunctional education system, and high youth unemployment are not reversed.
“These also are aspects of our fundamental dignity that the #EndSARS protests seek to assert. Only an active and structural engagement with democratic politics by Nigerian youth can achieve the goals of #EndSARS. Protest simply isn’t enough,” he said.
“I therefore call on Nigerian youth to focus their energy on: (1) strong advocacy and pressure to ensure that the National Assembly passes an electoral reform bill by mid-2021 that includes provisions for electronic transmissions of votes from polling units to the database of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and for Nigerians in diaspora to have the opportunity to vote from abroad; (2) voter registration en masse for the elections in 2023 and subsequent elections, and (3) structural participation in politics, i.e. joining political parties of their individual choice as members, voting, and standing as candidates in elections. All three approaches are essential. It is not enough to simply stand as candidates in the context of Not Too Young, which was nevertheless a commendable initiative,” he added.
The former presidential candidate warned that Nigerian youth are likely to get the same outcomes as the Arab Spring countries if they continue to shy away from politics on the basis of weak excuses such as: ‘our votes will not count’, ‘the elections will be rigged’, among others.
He noted that with these excuses, the youth are surrendering their future to corrupt, incompetent and repressive political leaders, insisting that this should not be an option for the youth in the country.
Ekwunife Sets New Standard In Nigerian Political Landscape
10TH EMPOWERMENT PROGRAMME: Ekwunife Sets New Standard In Nigerian Political Landscape
By Chris Umeokafor (Nnanyelugo)
When I read in the social media that *Senator Uche Ekwunife* has done yet again another empowerment making it the 10th, I was in the seventh heaven not because I was one of the beneficiaries but because for the first time in Nigerian political clime, a public office holder could empower the people up to that number in such a short time in office.
The standpoint in this 10th empowerment is that it spread to the 326 political wards in Anambra state, touching as many as 780 women whose lives and that of their families have been extricated from the shackles of penury. This is a milestone! The idea behind this empowerment of Anambra women is a product of a critical thinking which deserves a huge appreciation because women are the bedrock of the society. The modern women are immensely resourceful, dependable and irreplaceable, they care about their immediate family and the society at large. Empowering women simply means empowering the entire society and this is why I commend *Senator Uche Ekwunife* for this wonderful show of love.
The joy expressed by the beneficiaries are boundless hence they sang with loud echo *”Uche Ekwunife Ga-Achi Anambra”* in agreement with the majority’s mantra that *”Uche Anambra Ga-Emezu come November 6, 2021″*. This is indeed the voice of the people as being expressed across the state. It is obvious that Anambra needs a touch of motherly love and care to be able to go back to it’s original state of being the light of the Nation. This is not a hard task as we have seen in *Senator Uche Ekwunife* those qualities needed to move our dear state forward.
Therefore, no need to gamble as our dear state is in need of a woman who has set standard in representation. Such standard can as well be replicated when she becomes the executive Governor of Anambra State.
Anambra 2021: Any APGA Aspirant Who De-Markets Another Risks Disqualification – Obiokoye
Special Adviser to Governor Willie Obiano on Political Matters, Honourable Ifeatu Obiokoye, has warned all gubernatorial aspirants on the platform of the ruling All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) to shun all manner of vulgar language and sarcastic statements against one another.
Obiokoye gave the warning in a nine-point press release signed by him and made available to the Pres.
He emphasized that henceforth the party will not tolerate any aspirant casting aspersions on another; that they should sell their manifestoes telling the people what they would do differently to take Anambra state to the next level of development.
The governor’s political adviser said about three aspirants have so far declared their intentions to run for the office of the governor on the platform of APGA but of utmost concern is the derogatory comments coming from one or two of them against each other.
He said the party has its constitution as well as sets code of conduct for every member and that one fundamental aspect of the code of conduct is that no member of the party will tarnish the image of the party nor bring any member to public ridicule.
Obiokoye reiterated that any aspirant attempting to demarket another aspirant will be disqualified from the primaries, stressing that an aspirant can be disqualified at the screening level if he has in the course of his campaigns put the party under ridicule and unnecessary blackmail.
He said the primary election will be an election for delegates and that aspirants should rather concentrate on those who will be delegates than trying to pull their fellow aspirants down.
Obiokoye’s press release reads, “The All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) wishes to bring to the notice of all governorship aspirants for the November 6, 2021 poll that henceforth the party will not condone nor tolerate any form of innuendoes nor sarcastic comments against co-aspirants.
“The party is however disenchanted with the way and manner in which some of the aspirants are piloting their electioneering campaigns: thus rather than sell their manifestoes to the people as to what they can do for Anambra, they decided to do the contrary.
“The All Progressives Grand Alliance is not reputed for brigandage nor casting aspersions on individuals but known for its internal democracy, ordinate party ideology as well as ensures a transparent process for all aspirants on its platform.
“APGA has continued to maintain its good governance mantra for the past 16 years ensuring that democracy dividends trickle down to the remotest parts of the hinterlands in the state. Ndi-Anambra no longer wish to return to the dark days of misrule and maladministration by political parties who plunged the state into the abyss.
“APGA is not known for destruction and vandalisation of public properties. It is equally not associated with political hanky panky and double-crossing but operates on the principle of equity and fair play.
“The APGA-led state government under Governor Willie Obiano has given the party a facelift such that APGA is on the lips of every onye-Anambra and it would be difficult for the opposition to uproot APGA.
“So rather than vilify one another, it is of paramount importance to state unequivocally that all aspirants on the platform of the All Progressives Grand Alliance should concentrate their campaigns on what they will do differently to take Anambra State to the next level of development and growth.
“The forthcoming November 6 governorship election is a must-win for APGA; this should be uppermost in the minds of every aspirant. As it is often said, in every contest there is a winner and a loser as well. As the party promises a free, fair, transparent and credible primary election, anyone who eventually clinches the party’s ticket, should bear in mind that APGA is the party to beat.
“I, therefore, enjoin all aspirants to apply caution and restraint in their utterances as they go about their electioneering activities bearing in mind that the ultimate goal is a victory for the All Progressives Grand Alliance come November 6, 2021
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