By Dayo Adeyeye
The so-called Ward Congresses of our Party, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) which took place yesterday was witnessed by all of you and you all saw what happened.
However, it has become necessary for me, as a loyal party man who is desirous of the PDP wining the June 21, 2014 election to bring to the public knowledge how the entire process was manipulated in favour of Mr Ayodele Fayose, who incidentally was the one who clamoured for primary election, but by yesterday’s ward congresses exposed as very unpopular, even within the PDP.
We had expected that someone like Fayose, who had boasted that he was the only aspirant acceptable to the PDP members, would allow a FREE and FAIR Ward Congresses so as to establish his popularity and acceptability, but what happened on Wednesday clearly demonstrated his (Fayose) rejection by the PDP members.
This is because the results that we have, which are also with the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Police, SSS and our party officials clearly show that we had majority of the delegates and anything contrary to the ORIGINAL results, copies of which are with the Police, INEC, SSS will be rejected.
Even in Irepodun/Ifelodun, Fayose’s Local Government, we shared the delegates equally on 50 50 basis.
We had also expected that members of the committee sent by the National Working Committee (NWC) of our party to conduct the Congresses would live up to their words, by abiding by the agreements that they reached with the aspirants, but they did not.
For clarity sake, I wish to state that:
The Committee from Abuja reneged on the agreement reached in a meeting with the aspirants on Wednesday morning that LISTS of Wards and Local Governments Electoral Officers submitted (two weeks ago) by Local Government Party Chairmen will be used.
Instead of the names submitted by the LG Party Chairmen, known hardline supporters of Fayose were used as Electoral Officers.
Despite our protest, the Committee insisted on using the known hardline Fayose’s supporters and went on to release Election Materials to them, with no single security agent accompany them to their various LGs.
Consequently, Election Materials meant for Ekiti West, Ise/Orun, Ekiti South/West and Emure Local Councils were diverted to unknown places. Our party chairmen in these Local Councils waited endlessly at the LG Party Secretariats but the Electoral Officers did not show up.
That of Efon LG was also diverted with the Electoral Officer, who unlike others; showed up at the LG recording the results in mere sheets of paper. The Electoral Officer later absconded only to appear at the party secretariat in Ado with the results sheets at about 8:30pm.
Election materials for Ado and Gbonyin Local Governments were snatched by hoodlums. The Electoral Officer for Ado LG, Tajudeen Arowolo made statement to the Police at Ologede Police Station; Ado-Ekiti that one Odunayo Arinka, a known supporter of Fayose led the thugs that hijacked the materials. Inspite of this, attempt was made to submit a FAKE result for Ado LG by one Taiwo Jinadu (from Iyin-Ekiti) and he was arrested by the police. He was to give the fake results to the State Secretary, Mr T.K.O Aluko before he was apprehended.
The Congresses did not hold in FIVE LGs: Ado, Gbonyin, Emure, Ikere and Ise/Orun. In two of the LGs – Ekiti West and Ekiti South West, the Ward Electoral Officers duly appointed by the LG Party Exco conducted the Congresses in the presence of INEC officials, men of the SSS and Police. INEC, Police and SSS have copies of the results.
Particularly in Ise/Orun, my own local government, the election materials were diverted in connivance with the State Treasurer, Mr. Adeolu Aluko.
In further demonstration of their hidden agenda (which has become open), the Committee from Abuja refused to allow AGENTS of the aspirants to participate in the collation of results.
As at the time the Committee from Abuja left the Party Secretariat on Wednesday, only unconfirmed results from EIGHT LGs were submitted to the committee.
We have results of all the Wards where the Congresses took place and the same results are with the INEC, Police and SSS. See table below for the authentic results.
To our amazement, the committee members did not show up at the party secretariat to conclude their assignment as promised. Instead, they rushed to Abuja in the early hours of today, and we have been reliably informed that results of all the 16 Local Governments were compiled with the help of Fayose’s agents and taken along with them to Abuja. Where they got these results, only the committee members can tell!
PRESIDENT JONATHAN’s POSITION ON CONSENSUS
As early as June, last year, the President demonstrated his commitment and love for Ekiti people and the PDP quest to win the June 21 election when he said consensus option should be adopted in other to avoid the in-fighting, acrimony and unnecessary waste of resources that usually attend primary election.
According to the President, the candidates that eventually emerge through primary elections are more often than not, left too bruised and the party too divided to face the opponents in the general election.
The President followed this up by meeting with the aspirants on January 4, 2014 where he again reiterated his preference for the consensus option
Obviously, with what happened on Wednesday, the fear of Mr. President on primary election has been clearly justified.
Now we ask; how can we reconcile holding primary election with those that emerged as delegates from the grossly manipulated Ward Congresses and Mr. President’s objective of PDP wining the June 21 governorship election?
However, as bad as the situation appears to be in the Ekiti PDP now, Mr. President can still salvage it. As the leader of the party, we urge Mr. President to intervene in the Ekiti matter and direct the suspension of Saturday’s Primary election, pending the resolution of all complaints emanating from the manipulated Ward Congresses.
I know that President Goodluck Jonathan meant well for the Ekiti people and the PDP by insisting that we should avoid the controversies of primary election and opt for consensus. However, his advocacy for consensus was frustrated by only one out of first 33 aspirants and of course later, the 14 aspirants that obtained nomination forms and were cleared by the screening committee.
On March 15, 2014, all the aspirants except Fayose, gave the Committee of South West leaders, at a meeting in which the new Chief of Staff to the President, Brig. Gen. Jones Arogbofa was present, a blank cheque to pick one of the aspirants as the consensus candidate. That goes to show the commitment of the aspirants to the success of the party and their respect for the President.
On my part, it was not an easy decision, having built solid structure and worked so hard in the last two years. I was convince that I could win in a free and fair primary, but I believed that no sacrifice should be too much for me to make to ensure success for the PDP.
The authentic results from the ELEVEN Local Councils where the Ward Congresses were held on Wednesday showed that we were even too conservative with our estimation of the level of our popularity and acceptability within the PDP. It is now confirmed that the Prince Adedayo AdeyeyeMovement (PAAM) is the most popular and accepted political group within the PDP and indeed the entire Ekiti State.
OUR PARTICIPATION IN THE CONGRESS
We thank God that we participated in the Ward Congress. Otherwise, the fraud that was perpetrated by Fayose and his cohorts would have appeared like a show of his popularity within the party. It has been rumoured four weeks ago that the lists of three adhoc ward delegates were already prepared, and what happened on Wednesday was just a mere authentication of the already prepared delegate lists. The conduct of those who came from Abuja confirmed that they only came to carry out a pre-arranged agenda.
From the authentic results of the Wednesday’s Ward Congress from the ELEVEN LGs, we had not less than 80 per cent of the delegates. This shows clearly that our structure is overwhelmingly superior to that of Fayose, to the extent that we had to even share delegates in his local government equally.
Furthermore, the Ward Congress exposed Fayose’s empty boast to the authorities in Abuja that he is the most popular aspirant. In other words, why would anyone who is popular connive with Electoral officers to hijack and divert election materials, and falsify results?
We wish to thank our teeming supporters who inspite of glaring pre-determined manipulations, still stood their grounds in the ELEVEN Local Councils where the Congresses were held. Some of them even had to pursue the LGs Electoral officers with OKADA to assure that election materials were taken to the designated LGs party secretariats.
Finally, I am appealing to Mr President and other well-meaning leaders of the PDP to intervene in the Ekiti matter. This is because we in the Prince Adedayo Adeyeye Movement (PAAM) have laboured so hard for the party. We have committed our time, energy and resources to the PDP and it will be painful to us to have all that we have laboured for destroyed on the altar of an individual’s desperate ambition (aide and supported by a discredited money-bag) to be the party’s candidate even when he knows that he stands no chance of winning the election.
It is our position that if we must participate in the Saturday’s primary election, the authentic list of delegates elected in the ELEVEN LGs where the Ward Congresses were held must be used. Also, fresh Congresses must be held in Ado, Emure, Gbonyin, Ise/Orun and Ikere LGs where the Congresses did not hold on Wednesday. Anything other this will simply mean that the Primary will be held with Fayose as the sole aspirant and we will wait and see what happens thereafter.
* Excerpts from a press statement by former National Publicity Secretary of Afenifere and Ekiti State gubernatorial aspirant, Prince Dayo Adeyeye.