Ekiti PDP Aspirants Protest against Fayose, Want Congress Annulled

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Victor Ogunje

As a way of ventilating their anger over the conduct of last Saturday’s adhoc delegate conference, some of the People’s Democratic Party governorship aspirants in Ekiti State , yesterday protested and called on the National Working Committee (NWC) to cancel the congress and order a rerun.

The aspirants expressed anger over how former governor Ayodele Fayose allegedly hijacked the congress conducted by a committee chaired by Akwa Ibom State Governor, Udom Emmanuel to his advantage.

The ward congress was staged by the PDP to elect three adhoc delegates to participate in the January 26 shadow poll of the party.

The protesting aspirants are former Ekiti State governor, Mr. Segun Oni, Senator Biodun Olujimi, Alhaji Lateef Ajijola and Mr. Yinka Akerele.

The aggrieved PDP chieftains , who paraded the streets carrying placards with their hordes of supporters, appealed to Senator Iyorcha Ayu-led NWC to cancel the congress that was allegedly skewed in favour former governor Ayodele’s political group.

While addressing party members, Senator Olujimi, who spoke on behalf of other aspirants, said that the ward congress didn’t take place in any part of the state, adding the purported result being bandied around was allegedly concocted by Fayose.

She faulted the five-man panel sent by the PDP national secretariat to supervise the congress, lamenting that the exercise was shrouded in secrecy to subvert the people’s will, transparency, inclusive participation of all the aspirants.

She stated that the exercise was devoid of democratic ethos and ideals as many PDP members across the 177 wards in the state waited in the sun for hours expecting the arrival of electoral materials, only to be told that the election had been conducted

“There was no adhoc ward congress and we want an absolute cancellation. What really happened was that one person hijacked all the materials and went to write all the list. If you hijacked the materials and you are writing the names of the delegates, then, you will surely face the consequences.

“It’s not about me. It’s about our party and future. What is important is fairness and justice. Any place where there’s no fairness and justice, peace will be eluded. So, all the peace agreement has been broken. When you broke the peace agreement, what do you expect us to do. To fold our arms? No, we won’t,”she said.

She alleged the exercise was deliberately designed from the outset to favour Fayose to ensure his preferred aspirants secure the party’s flag in the June 18 governorship election in the state.

Olujimi described the ugly development as unfortunate and fraudulent, regretting that it had placed a strong moral burden on the democratic credentials of the party, which many believe as the bastion of democracy.

She called on the leadership of the party to swiftly intervene by allowing substantial compliance and adherence to democratic norms devoid of manipulation, warning that the development if allowed to persist would be a threat to the victory of the party in the poll.

“There is a need to listen to the people of Ekiti. The party must do the needful. They must call a meeting. And the meeting must be a meeting of truth. Without that, the poll here would be very tough for our party”, she added