- Seven of the eight APC governorship aspirants in Ekiti state have alleged manipulation in the constitution of the committees to oversee the primary elections
- The aspirants said members of the committees are known loyalists of Biodun Oyebanji, the aspirant allegedly anointed by Governor Fayemi
- Senator Opeyemi Bamidele and the other concerned aspirants are, therefore, demanding a replacement of the members of the committees
Seven of the eight aspirants jostling for the APC's governorship ticket in the primary scheduled to hold on Thursday, January 27, in Ekiti state have called for the disbandment and replacement of the members of the ward and LGA election committee.
In a jointly signed statement sent to Legit.ng, the aspirants alleged that the members appointed as the committee to oversee the primary election are loyalists of Biodun Oyebanji, the aspirant allegedly backed by Governor Kayode Fayemi.
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The aspirants who made the allegations are:
- Engr Kayode Ojo
- Otunba Demola Popoola
- Rt Hon Femi Bamisile
- Hon Bamidele Faparusi
- Sen Dayo Adeyeye
- Sen Opeyemi Bamidele
- Arole Oba Afolabi Oluwasola
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According to the aspirants, the "purported" list of local government election and ward election committees were made up solely by party members and political appointees that have openly endorsed Oyebanji who is the immediate past Secretary to the State Government (SSG) in Ekiti state.
The statement reads:
"It is on record that the government of Governor Kayode Fayemi has given its unwavering support to the candidacy of Biodun Oyebanji, it is common knowledge that the Governor and most appointees of the Governor are openly rooting for and supporting Biodun Oyebanji’s aspiration to become the flag bearer of our great party.
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"What is more disturbing is the fact that a simple glance at the names of the persons appointed as members of both Committees would reveal that it is made up appointees of government who are all supporters of a candidate in the primary election they are appointed to superintend on.
"It's obvious that most of the names such as Kemi Olaleye, Ayo Adegbite, Aribasoye Richard's, Olu Aladeloye, Barrister Oloje, Deji Ajayi etc that appeared as ward and electoral officers are members of BAO ( government sponsored candidate.) Campaign committee."
The aspirants raised an alarm that members of the committees may have been solely nominated by Oyebanji with intention of having the primary election manipulated to unjustly favour him.
Aspirants warn of imminent legal tussles
The aspirants have warned that the ruling APC will be dragged into unnecessary legal tussles if the primary continues with the current members of the election committees.
They also warned that the legal tussles could jeopardise the opportunity of the ruling party.
The aspirants, therefore, requested that both the LGA and ward election committees as constituted on the list already in circulation "be disbanded and replaced with names that would reinforce internal democracy and uphold the aims and objectives of the party."
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He called on the supporters of all the aspirants to be law-abiding and follow the tenets of democracy.
Badaru described APC as one family, calling for the support of the party members to succeed as a team. The governor also announced that an option A4 direct primary will be adopted.