Ekiti 2018: Where Will The Pendulum Swing?
Nigeria News takes a look at the APC gubernatorial aspirants in Ekiti State and who among the gladiators will fly the party’s flag eventually.
What does Kayode Fayemi want again? Rhetorically I have asked myself that question and have not been able to provide a quality answer than that the former Ekiti State Governor is only pursuing self-ambition.
He lost to Governor Ayo Fayose disgracefully about four years ago. He lost the gubernatorial polls in all the local government areas of the state but found himself in President Muhammadu Buhari’s cabinet as the Minister of Mines and Solid Minerals.
If not for his present ministerial post, Fayemi would have become so irrelevant in the politics of the All Progressives Congress, APC and of course Ekiti politics.
Almost four years ago, Fayose taught Fayemi a bitter lesson that though Ekiti people are educationally sophisticated, they are real grassroots people that believe so much in what has been tagged “Stomach Infrastructure”.
Fayemi’s elitist programmes do not entice an average Ekiti man whose main occupation is farming. A typical Ekiti man will always embrace western education but not to the detriment of growing yams for a sumptuous pounded yam to feed his family.
Governance in this part of western Nigeria has grown beyond the use of vocabularies, which Fayemi is good at, but a practical solution that addresses the immediate problems of the civil servants and farmers in the agrarian state.
Where the problems lie now is not even about the chance of APC in Ekiti but the selfish ambition of the APC aspirants in the coming election.
Besides Fayemi, there are three other strong aspirants from APC that want Fayose’s seat and they include a former Governor of the state under the Peoples Democratic Party, Dr Segun Oni, a former member of the House of Representatives, Mr Opeyemi Bamidele and a former Senator, Babafemi Ojudu.
Bamidele who was a former Lagos State Commissioner for Information and Strategy was the Public Relations Secretary of the Alliance for Democracy, AD years back.
He threw his weight behind Fayemi in 2011 to become the state governor. At the time, I had the privilege of reporting the Lagos State House and seeing how frequent Fayemi visited the state Ministry of Information for financial assistant towards realizing his ambition.
Fayemi was Asiwaju Ahmed Tinubu’s boy. As a matter of fact, the former Lagos State Governor, Tinubu bankrolled Fayemi’s election in Ekiti but today, they have parted ways.
It was gathered that Tinubu warned Fayemi over his elitist programme in Ekiti and that it might cause his re-election. Instead of Fayemi to take Tinubu’s instruction, he arrogantly waved it but later paid the price.
Meanwhile, Bamidele also had the ambition. He actually declared to run in 2014 but was advised to step down for Fayemi. Bamidele had to defect to Labour Party to realise his ambition but lost woefully at the polls.
He had since traced his steps back to APC after he had settled scores with his godfather, Tinubu and had since bought a form to contest for the state gubernatorial election under the party, Bamidele would be contesting against his friends Fayemi, Oni and Ojudu.
Anyway, there is a precedence in Ekiti. The present governor, Fayose was impeached in his first term but found his way back to the seat. Perhaps, this is what Oni and Fayemi are banking on to ride to the Ekiti state house once again, time will tell.
For Ojudu, the Senior Special Assistant to President Buhari on Political matters, contesting gubernatorial in Ekiti is not new but who among the three other contenders can he easily beat, the race will be unveiled on May 5.
Until then, when the APC will conduct its gubernatorial primaries in Ekiti State, the government of the fountain of knowledge is still in the hands of PDP and Fayose.