Declaring Interest in Ekiti Governorship, Olujimi Says Seat Not Exclusive for Men

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Victor Ogunje

Senator representing Ekiti South Senatorial District, Mrs Biodun Olujimi, has said it would be wrong and amount to abridgement of fundamental rights, for the governorship position to be an exclusive preserve of men in the country.

The former minority leader, also cautioned those flaunting the card of gender as a criterion for the 2022 governorship election in the state, saying such individuals should “stop insulting women, focus on capacity and competence to deliver democratic dividends to the people of the state”.

Olujimi stated this, on Saturday, while declaring her intention to contest the 2022 governorship election on the Platform of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), at her ward 7, Omuo Ekiti, headquarters of Ekiti East Local Government Area of the state.

She said: “There was nothing spectacular about being a governor such that it should be exclusive for men. I feel insulted and offended, when some people insinuate that it was not time for women to be governor of a state.”

Olujimi, who said she doesn’t believe that politics is a man’s world, argued that those having this erroneous impression were only barbaric and provincial in thinking and exposure.

“What about politics at the level of the Senate, will you not say it is man’s world? What is on ground is not about men or women; it is about development; it is about inclusiveness; it is about wanting to serve your people.

“That is why I believe that coming into it is nothing spectacular especially, because I have been there before. This won’t be my first time. Nowadays, I hear stories that it isn’t time for women. I feel pained and insulted, because it was not time for women when I became the commissioner for work.

“It was not time for women, when I became the Deputy Governor. It wasn’t time for women,when I was elected into the House of Representatives. It was not time for women, when I went to the senate and became Deputy Minority Whip and also got re-elected into the Senate.

“So, it is because we have elevated the governorship election beyond its scope that the issue of gender is played up. So, I feel offended and annoyed with such insinuations. It is about capability, competence and requisite knowledge.

“For once, no woman has been there except for Anambra, when a woman inadvertently became an acting governor. So, what is wrong in ensuring that there is inclusiveness? I believe I have what it takes to be a governor of a state,” she said, adding that for equity and justice sake, all political parties fielding candidates for the election should pick from the southern zone, which has never produced the governor since the return of democracy in 1999.

“I have never stop saying that the south has been badly marginalised. I have never stop saying it. I have been behind the agitation for power shift to the south. The reason is that if you are a true born of the south and you see the marginalisation going on, you either speak up or forever remain silent.

“There are three senatorial zones. In the north, Segun Oni had three and half years. Governor Kayode Fayemi is about completing 8 years. If you add the two, they would have spent eleven and half years. If you come to the central, Adeniyi Adebayo was there for 4 years follow by Ayodele Fayose, who spent roughly eight years, making it a total of 12 years. The south hasn’t done.

“If you don’t allow the south now, it means they will wait for another eight years before taking a shot at it and the state would have existed democratically for 32 years without a southern governor,” she maintained.

She, however, said the ruling All Progressives congress (APC), could be defeated by the PDP, if the party did not put a wrong foot forward by electing wrong candidate as the standard bearer.