By Segun James
The governorship candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Ogun State, Mr. Oladipupo Adebutu has said that Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) recognition of the candidacy of Senator Buruji Kasamu as the candidate of the party is a deliberate action of the commission to destabilise the party in the state.
Adebutu who faulted the candidacy of Kasamu hinged his reason on the fact that the PDP has not only expelled Kasamu, but that the commission is trying to decide for the party who its candidate in the election will be.
He insisted that this is contrary reason, as it points to the fact the commission is trying to decide for the party who it’s candidate should be.
Speaking to newsmen yesterday in Lagos, Adebutu said the commission demonstrated clear partiality in the published lists, saying that both himself and Kashamu emerged from two different primaries one of which was recognised by the national leadership.
He said even though both parties had been locked in litigations over who should fly the party’s ticket in the election, INEC should have made the position of governorship candidate vacant pending the outcome of the resolution of the cases in the court.
Adebutu wondered why INEC would publish Kashamu as the party’s candidate in the claim it obtained a court order. He said he had obtained two court orders from an Abuja High Court, declaring the primary that produced Kashamu null and void and that he should be recognised as candidate.
Adebutu added that the court order was based on the fact that he emerged as candidate in a primary conducted by the National Working Committee(NWC) which has the constitutional right to conduct primaries in the party.
He said that INEC ignored his own court orders to publish Kashamu’s name was a clear attempt to destabilise the party and undermine its victory.
“INEC has come out to choose between these contending orders and as a result creating confusion in the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
“While we recognise that INEC should be a fair arbiter that should be their role in elections.But we have seen INEC to be biased in this matter .
“The question is to what purpose or effect is this bias. In our view because of the desperation to dismember our party, INEC is continually interfering in our party process,” he said.
Adebutu said he had no doubts that INEC was acting a script by the All Progressives Congress (APC)to win the state at all costs.
He said the best INEC should have done was to publish the names both him and Kashamu as candidates or publish no names at pending the resolution of all litigations.
He said it was a mockery of democracy that Kashamu who did not obtain nomination form from the party’s authorities or screened was published as candidate, adding that Kashamu was only being used to destabilise the party as he had never for once aligned with the national body of the party.
Adebutu added all those in the defunct Ali Modu Sheriff camp to which Kashamu belonged had since left the party after the Supreme Court judgement affirming Senator Ahmed Makarfi as Caretaker Chairman in 2018.
Adebutu, however, said he and his supporters would not leave the party over the development in order to clear the coast for APC.