- Denies walking out on Tinubu, Akande
Â By Victor Ogunje in Ado Ekiti
The Minister of Mines and Steel Development and governorship aspirant of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Dr Kayode Fayemi, has congratulated Ekiti State Deputy Governor, Prof Kolapo Olusola, on his emergence as the Peoples Democratic Party’s (PDP) standard-bearer for theÂ July 14, governorship election in the state.
Prof OlusolaÂ on TuesdayÂ emerged winner of the PDP governorship primary
held in Ado-Ekiti, the state capital.
Fayemi, a former governor of the state, said the emergence of Olusola in an orderly and peaceful primary is a welcome development.
He, however, said the APC would give the PDP standard-bearer a good fight for the Oke Ayoba Government House comeÂ July 14th, adding, however, that the APC still remains the preferred choice for the
generality of Ekiti people.
The minister, according to a statement by his Media Office, said he is confident that whoever emerges as the APC standard-bearer in the partyâ€™s rescheduled primaryÂ on Friday, would be more acceptable to the Ekiti electorate.
Contrary to the rumour and online posts that he walked out of a meeting convened by the Southwest leadership of the APC to mediate in the Ekiti governorship imbroglio, Fayemi denied the allegation, describing it as a calculated attempt to smear his image.
Fayemi was said to have allegedly exhibited the action during a trouble-shooting meeting convened by the National Leader of the party, Senator Bola Ahmed Tinubu, and the party’s former Interim National Chairman, Chief Bisi Akande, to resolve the crisis rocking the party over its botch governorship primaryÂ Saturday.
At the meeting held at the Lagos House in Abuja, Fayemi and other 32 other aspirants, including Segun Oni, were in attendance.
In a statementÂ by the former governor’s Media Aide, Yinka Oyebode,Â on Wednesday, Fayemi said: â€œContrary to misleading media reports and social media posts purporting that he walked out of the meeting, he only left the venue, like other attendees, at the end of the meeting.â€
The minister said there was no basis for him to storm out of the meeting which was called by the leaders to proffer the way forward for the party in the face of the rescheduled Ekiti governorship primary.
He however said that he could not make the second part of the meeting when it reconvened later in the evening, having earlier taken permission from the leaders to attend another meeting.
â€œIt is thus worrisome and highly embarrassing reading reports of purported ‘walk outâ€™ on our leaders when nothing like that actually took place.
â€œWe implore well-meaning members of the society and members of our great party to disregard the misleading reports,â€ the statement added.
Fayemi and other aspirants have polarized the contestantsâ€™ camp into two, with the minister accusing others ofÂ ganging up to stop him from contesting.
Fighting back, the other camp, led by a former governor of the state Oni accused Fayemi of displaying desperation byÂ using his connections to compromise the Governor Tanko Al-Makura-led governorship primary committee and that it should be disbanded.