Victor Ogunje in Ado Ekiti
Crisis may have hit the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the South-west as the former governor of Ekiti State, Mr. Ayodele Fayose, has warned the Oyo State Governor, Mr. Seyi Makinde, against tampering with the leadership of the party in Ekiti State and other South-west states, despite the position of the governor as the zonal leader of the party.
Fayose insisted that the Oyo State governor has no right to interfere in the local politics being played in each South-west state despite being a zonal leader of the party.
The former governor said this yesterday when he led the national delegates of PDP, including the chairmen of the party in Osun, Ekiti, Lagos states to Abeokuta, the Ogun State capital.
Fayose stressed that Makinde, though the only governor in South-west, should allow every state to be governed by its local leaders.
He noted that he is ready to fight anyone that wants to take over the structure of the party in Ekiti State from him.
He said, “There has been a reasonable cold war of who and who becomes the executive of the zone. Governor Makinde has demanded that the zonal executive be sacked and a caretaker be fostered on the zone which the party did.
“But since the caretaker committee came into being, he has not allowed them to function because he produced the chairman.
“Beyond that, the fact that there is a sitting governor does not say I should go to another man’s state. Nobody should come to my state; if you come to my state, I will face you squarely.
“I will continue to respect him because he is my brother; I love him so much and I was part of his emergence.”
Earlier, the party in Ogun State had taken over the party secretariat barely a month after the leader of a faction of the party in the state, the late Senator Buruji Kashamu died.
The other faction led by Sikirullahi Ogundele took over the Secretariat from the Kashamu faction in a peaceful manner and held a zonal meeting afterward.
Rising from the meeting, a communique was issued and signed by the four states chairmen of PDP in South-West, which include Mr. Deji Doherty (Lagos); Sikirullahi Ogundele (Ogun); Sunday Olatunde Akanfe (Osun); and Bisi Kolawole (Ekiti).
According to the communiqué, the leaders of the party in South-west led by Fayose resolved that no state should be ruled or governed by another.
The party chairmen also emphasised that there is a need for the party to allow local politics in their respective states.
The chairmen resolved that “it must also be noted that the leadership of His Excellency, Governor Seyi Makinde is not in question.
“It must be noted that each state has its own leaders as politics is local and its leadership structure must be respected, but, no state is ruled or governed by another.
“It has been established and a decision is taken that the existing zoning formula in the zone for the zonal executives of the party should not be tampered with.
“Our position is that any other formulae for the zone in the South West will not be acceptable to us.
“We seize this opportunity to let the National Working Committee know that it is nothing but free, fair, transparent and no violent congress is what is acceptable to us and we are ready to comply with all legitimate processes to determine the outcome of the zonal congress.
“The Eddy Olafeso-led zonal executive only spent two years from November 2017 till date should be allowed to complete the very credible job they’ve commenced in the South-West. The team must be allowed to complete its tenure.
“We reject any style of leadership that does not respect democratic norms. Everybody must be carried along for the same of equity and fairness.
“All we are saying is that we must give peace a chance and allow the South-West take its rightful position in the PDP and Nigeria.”