By Victor Ogunje
The Governor of Ekiti State, Dr. Kayode Fayemi, has insisted that the formation of a group called Southwest Agenda for 2023 (SWAGA) to lead the presidential aspiration of the former Governor of Lagos State, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, was tantamount to anti-party activity.
Fayemi said it was wrong for the group to have been conceived in the first instance, even when the Lagos State Governorship Advisory Council(GAC) chaired by Tinubu had dissolved all groups in All Progressives Congress (APC) in Lagos, for internal cohesion.
Senator Adeyeye had last Wednesday blasted Fayemi for allegedly instigating the removal of a ward 8 Chairman in Ado Ekiti Local Government Area, Mr. Clement Afolabi, for allegedly hobnobbing with SWAGA against Fayemi presidential aspiration.
The Ekiti State governor, who responded yesterday through his Senior Special Assistant on Public Communications, Segun Dipe, said Adeyeye allegedly has dementia by linking him to the removal of a mere ward chairman.
He said: “We considered referring to himself (Adeyeye) as SWAGA chairman within the APC as a misnomer. Perhaps Adeyeye needs to be reminded that the APC had since made pronouncements against setting up groups within the party.
“Last June, the Lagos APC led by Tinubu dissolved all groups within the party into the APC structure in the state. According to a communique duly signed by the Governor’s Advisory Council, which is the highest decision making body within the Lagos APC, said all groups, including the two most powerful, The Mandate Group, and Justice Forum, ceased to exist.
“The resolution, Tinubu had said, was to restate the often stated position that the only group known is the APC and not any factional group.
“One then wonders where Adeyeye and his co-travellers derived their powers to float another group within the APC, which they are calling APC members to start moving to. If this is not an anti-party move, then we wonder what it is.”
Fayemi, who descended heavily on the former minister for asking the APC national leadership to place him on a watch list of disloyal members, said what one could garner from such diatribe “was that Adeyeye was in a fight-flight mode while dishing out those words.
“How could Adeyeye, whose antecedents are well known, accuse Fayemi, one of the most brilliant, reliable and courtly leaders in the APC and Nigeria, of anti-party?
“No amount of character assassination from the likes of Adeyeye would reduce the governor’s relevance, and in his usual element, Fayemi would only wave it off as one of the usual tantrums of a desperate politician in search of relevance.”
The Ekiti State governor stated further that it was incongruous and utterly wrong for Adeyeye to have linked him to making undemocratic comments on issues recently, and wanted him called to order over issues he had no nexus with.
“Although he failed to mention where Fayemi made the assertions, we suspect Adeyeye was referring to the platform appearance of the governor, where he, along with other personalities, discussed the topic: ‘Devolution of Powers: the solution to Nigeria’s problems’.
“While fielding questions on the agitations by the youths, Fayemi said the young people should stop agonising and start organising. And that if they don’t like what APC is doing, there’s only one way out: ‘Let them organise themselves, go to a party of their choice and vote against us’.
“And on the #EndSARS protest, he said: ‘The five-point demands of the youths during the #EndSARS protests are absolutely laudable and on our part in Ekiti State, the issue of police brutality has been addressed, and even acknowledged by the federal government.“We expect Adeyeye as a journalist to know better than being narrow-minded. Instead of accusing Fayemi of anti-party activities, what this shows is Fayemi’s fair-mindedness and democratic credentials,” he stated.