Some governorship aspirants under the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party in Ekiti State have rejected the emergence of the state Deputy Governor, Prof. Kolapo Olusola, as the party’s consensus candidate in the 2018 governorship election in the state. They described the process that produced Olusola as illegal and as such would not stand.
The aspirants that rejected Olusola are the senator representing Ekiti South Senatorial District, Biodun Olujimi, the Publicity Secretary of the PDP National Caretaker Committee, Prince Dayo Adeyeye, the immediate past state Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, Owoseni Ajayi; and a former Nigerian High Commissioner to Canada, Dare Bejide.
Adeyeye has resigned as the Pro- Chancellor and Chairman, Governing Council of the Ekiti State University, Ado Ekiti to protest against the emergence of Olusola.
Olujimi in a telephone interview with one of our correspondents, condemned the process, saying it was against the dictates of the party’s constitution.
She wondered why Governor Ayodele Fayose, who rejected consensus candidacy when he was contesting for governorship, would allow imposition of candidate on the party.
She stated that the selection “will not hold water” since councillors, commissioners and several others at the meeting were not known to the party’s constitution as eligible to choose candidates.
Olujimi said, “What they have done will not hold water. We have taken the south (of Ekiti) and we have the number and the capability to take over other parts of the state.
“Besides, if he (Fayose) rejected consensus candidacy when he wanted to contest the last election, why is he now spearheading the handpicking of a consensus candidate for the party?”
Olujimi argued that only 70 of the over 1,000 persons at the meeting where Olusola was adopted were eligible as delegates to the PDP primary.
Ajayi and Bejide also described the
process that produced Olusola as illegal.
Adeyeye, an aspirant in the 2018 governorship election had on Wednesday protested against the adoption of Olusola as the party’s candidate.
Speaking through his campaign organisation, Prince Adedayo Adeyeye Movement, he stated that the adoption was a clear breach of the PDP’s Constitution and the provisions of the Electoral Act (as amended).
Confirming his resignation in a telephone conversation on Thursday, Adeyeye said a letter to that effect had been conveyed to Fayose.
The coordinator of PAAM, Niyi Ojo, said the resignation was not unconnected with Adeyeye’s desire to pursue his governorship ambition.
“His resignation is not unconnected with his desire to contest the Ekiti State governorship election and his rejection of the unilateral adoption of Prof. Olusola, the Ekiti State Deputy Governor as the purported candidate of the PDP for the 2018 governorship contest by the state Governor, Ayodele Fayose,” he said.
Meanwhile, the Ekiti State Government has accepted Adeyeye’s resignation as the Chairman, Governing Council of EKSU.
According to a statement signed by the Secretary to the State Government, Dr. Modupe Alade, the state government thanked Adeyeye for his contributions to the university and wished him well in his future endeavours.
Alade also announced that the governor had approved the appointment of Mr. Dele Adesina (SAN) as the new chairman of the council.
“The appointment takes immediate effect,” the statement added.
Olusola had emerged from the list of strong contenders for the governorship ticket as the “most preferred candidate” at a meeting held on Wednesday by party bigwigs in Ado Ekiti, the Ekiti State capital.
The meeting was attended by serving and former members of the PDP State Working Committee, members of the Ekiti State House of Assembly, chieftains of the party from the 16 local government areas and 177 wards, as well as the chairmen and members of state’s boards and parastatals among others.
Olusola, an indigene of Ikere Ekiti, which is the second largest town in Ekiti, was adopted before the commencement of a retreat organised for members to sensitise them ahead of the 2018 election.