Ekiti Election, The Die Is Cast?

Stephen Ubanna

Until  Mahmood Yakubu, a professor and Chairman, Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, conclude the   Saturday, July 14, 2018, governorship election in Ekiti state and announce the result which would be acceptable to all the participating parties ,  the state would remain  a major focus of people  in the country and the international Community.

This is because whatever  happens in the  election would give an insight to what people should expect  in Osun state and the 2019 general election in general. But Mahmood, the INEC  boss ,  has assured that there was  no cause for alarm, stressing that the Ekiti governorship  election would be ”free and fair”, insisting that there would be no room for rigging  .

In spite of the security arrangement put in place by the Commission  to guarantee a free and fair election in the state and curtail violence, fears were still being expressed in several quarters that the  election would be marred by crisis.    One of such people who could not hide his feelings about what is currently happening  in Ekiti state  ahead of the governorship  election holding on Saturday, July 14, 2018, was and which could breed trouble was  Adeyeye Enitan Adewusi, the Oni of Ife.   The foremost Yoruba traditional ruler was said to have told Paul  Arkwright, the  British High Commissioner to Nigeria in his Palace that he fears for the Ekiti election.  He has his reasons.

According to him , the parties appear not to have learnt from history as the duo of Kolapo  Olusola, a Professor and former Deputy  governor of Ayodele Fayodele and now  the governorship of People’s Democratic Party, PDP, and Kayode Fayemi, a former minister of Mines and Solid Minerals Development and governorship Candidate of the All Progressive Congress, APC, and their  supporters and sponsors  were at each other’s throat .

There  is no gain saying the fact that  the political  gladiators in the two key parties in the state see the election as a do or die affair  and were ready to go to any length to win the election.  Worried at the happening  at Ekiti state, the Oni had appealed to the youths who are vulnerable to the antics of the politicians  not to allow themselves to be used for ”political violence   to waste lives”.

Fayose, the  state governor and arrow-head of PDP Campaigns may have set the tone of what may likely happen in tomorrow’s  governorship election  in the state  when he resorted to weeping  on Tuesday,  July 10, 2018, on the excuse that  he was brutalised  by armed policemen  who allegedly stormed the main entrance  to the government House to stop a rally by the PDP .

Eye-witness account  confirmed that there was gunshots at the scene of the fracas as tear gas  canisters were freely used by the anti-riot policemen to disperse the supporters of Olusola, the PDP  governorship Candidate in the state.  The police  may have  justified their action on the ground that  the Organisers   of the rally did not  obtain police permit  before embarking on it. The fallout was that the  embittered governor Fayose  rushed to the scene to rescue the party supporters.

The  security operatives may have played into his hand when  they allowed him to  come on air to  condemn the activities of the anti-riot policemen in the state, lamenting that  the trigger-hungry Ibrahim-Idris,  led Force , fired tear gas at him. He also claimed being ”slapped and beaten by the mobile police men on the assignment to intimidate the PDP Crowd. The aggrieved governor believes the  anti-riot policemen were acting out the script of the Presidency.

 

The action of the anti-riot policemen in the state may  have drawn the sympathy of the people to the  PDP governorship Candidate  as Buhari and Aswaju Bola Tinubu, the APC, National leader  battle to turn the table in favour of Fayemi  in tomorrow’s governorship election in the state.

Many believe that  the anti-riot policemen  may have resorted to the use of force to disperse the PDP supporters at the rally ground because  Buhari and other APC Chieftains  were  in the state  for  the Campaign rally of  Fayemi the party, governorship Candidate  which may have clashed with that of  the PDP.

Their action may have further been encouraged   because of Fayose , the state governor’s arrogance to  receive Buhari and his entourage at the Ado Ekiti  Airport because of their perceived  political difference. Fayose  may have refused to  to  be at the Airport  to receive  the President as the Chief Security officer of the state  to avoid  playing  into the hand f critics  who may see it as a tacit endorsement of Fayemi, the APC flag bearer in the state.

Already the PDP had heaped a  baggage on the Buhari led government of plan to establish a cattle colony in the state, which the APC political leaders, particular Buhari, are  battling to   correct  the impression created in the mind of the people.

Kayode Fayemi: APC , Governorship

While the People of Ekiti state are still holding the President  by the jugular to explain  the measures  put in place to stop the herdsmen and farmers clashes  in the country, the herdsmen turned gunmen  struck   at Kabanni  Community and its environs  in Gandi District  in Rabbah  local government Area of Soko state and killed 32 people.

Residents said that the attackers invaded the village  with vehicles and motorcycles and started shooting sporadically. The attack on the Community may have come  a few days after Aminu Tambunwal, the state governor  criticised the Buhari Administration  of increasing the level of poverty in the country. The attack on the Kabanni Community may have informed the people of Ekiti state  that no state is save, insisting  that the  President  has to convince them   that he  well for them.  what   This is because they  do not want the  state to be turned to  another Benue, Taraba or Zamfara states which  had turned to a theatre of war by armed herdsmen.

Chijindu Ukachukwu, an Igbo based businessman at Ado Ekiti  told the Magazine that the  two parties, PDP  and  APC , which are instrong contention to occupy the Ekiti  government House, may have realised  that soap box  rhetoric’s  could not sway the votes of the people in  favour of their respective  Candidates  that they have  resorted to the use of  giving out cash and food items  to influence the voters.

Ukachukwu disclosed that the PDP  under the watchful of eyes of Buhari ,whose government  claimed was fighting Corruption in the country  was said to be  giving out N10,00 to alleged farmers in the state on a condition that they  must sign for it. But critics are reading meaning to it  that it was  done ostensibly to rig the Saturday election  by APC and  INEC, by mass producing of the PVC, Card to be used in voting  in order to deny the genuine voter to pave the way for Fayemi to win.

The PDP may  have woken from slumber that  has moved in to match the APC  naira for naira to influence the   voters , showing how desperate the two parties were to win the election at all cost. Emmanuel Udom and Nyensom Wike, the  PDP governors of the oil producing states of Akwa Ibom and Rivers state and friends of Fayose were said   to  have loaded millions of naira  into a chopper  and flew to Ado Ekiti,  on Friday, July 13, 2018, to oil the PDP  Campaign machinery.

Sources   told the Magazine  that  appearance of the duo and other PDP  Chieftains in the state may have forced the  Department of State Security, DSS,  to put the Opposition PDP under close security watch, particular, Fayose  .

The Magazine learnt the security operatives have been given a standing order to shoot at sight any  one that dares to snatch  the ballot box at a voting center. The implication of the order  was that the security operatives should be ready to shoot both the PDP and APC   supporters as they would attempt to snatch ballot boxes.For Olusola  Aand Fayemi, governorship  Candidates of the PDP and the APC respectively: the die is cast.

Recent Comments
Share This Article On
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  

Related posts

Leave a Comment