2014 Ekiti poll: Who wears the crown?

By IAfrica
In Nigeria
Jun 8th, 2014

imageIn the next two weeks, electorates in Ekiti State will be voting for a Governor who will take over the leadership of the state for the next four years.

Campaigns have been on since last two months after the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) declared it opened.

Political parties participating in the poll have been visiting different parts of the state soliciting for votes and telling the people on why their political party should be voted for.

According to INEC, 18 political parties would be participating in the election but among these candidates, only three them are major contenders

They are; the All Progressives Congress (APC) Candidate, who is also the incumbent Governor of the State, Kayode Fayemi, the Peoples Democratic Party flagbearer, Ayodele Fayose and the Labour Party (LP) candidate, Hon. Opeyemi Bamidele.

Observers have said that one of the three political gladiators mentioned above will emerge as the next governor due to their popularity in the State.

Despite the chances of the three candidates were very bright, they still have some obstacles that may be standing on their ways and which may likely make it difficult for them to have soft landing.

Already, candidates are on their last batch of campaigns as the election day is just 15 days ahead.

DailyPost learnt from Observers that Fayemi, who is a Doctorate degree holder has gained more supports from elites residing in the State due to what they believe he has been able to achieve academically.

This may be attributed to the recent position the immediate past governor of the State, Engr. Segun Oni who defected to APC from PDP took following the emergence of Fayose as the party candidate.

Oni said PDP was wrong to have picked Fayose out of the aspirants jostling for the party ticket.

Oni stated further that Fayose, who is an HND graduate has no pedigree to march Fayemi’s profile, therefore cannot stand in the same party with someone who has soiled his hand.

It was also gathered that since Fayemi reclaimed his mandate in 2010, all communities in the state have continued to enjoy peace.

It was also divulged that the party which produced Fayemi (APC) was said to have a strong structures in all rural areas in Ekiti State, and this was due to the impact of his administration in the development of rural areas.

However, Fayemi may be facing challenges among the civil servants, particularly the teachers following a policy introduced by his administration that all teachers must participate in an aptitude test.

But Fayose, a former Governor of the state between 2003 and 2006 is said to have been enjoying supports from the commoners.

It was gathered that those who have been canvassing for the return of Fayose include, market women, Artisans, Okada riders and the Youth.

This support is said to have come due to his open door policy during his first term tenure.

In those days, Fayose was always seen around the commoners and chatting with them and sharing in their pains.

Fayose, popularly called “Osokomole” among his followers also spent his first term in developing major sectors of the state.

Some of his achievements include, the dualization of Ado-Ekiti major road, modern market, building of schools, giving of car loans to workers and empowering the artisans.

The PDP candidate who was known as “Mr nonsense” may be facing some obstacles as he begin to work towards his return to power following some of the allegations raised against him during his first term.

He was alleged to have mismanaged some funds during his era and presently facing trial on the said matter.

Also, in his first term, Fayose is at loggerheads with most of the traditional rulers in the State. This was said to have been one of the reasons that led to his impeachment.

Though, on the day Fayose emerged as the party flagbearer, he said “this is a new Fayose”. He said he was now mature and had learnt his lesson.

Opeyemi, who got the seat to the House of Representatives through the platform of the defunct Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) before it merged with CPC and ANPP to form APC has been enjoying cult followership in some quarters from the State.

It is believed that Opeyemi, a former Commissioner for Information in Lagos State has emerged under a party which has a weak structure in the State.

Though, he has been described as a generous man, whom is believed may turn things for the better, he eventually wins the poll.

However, some political commentators have described Opeyemi as a man who is too over ambitious.

They said he should have supported Fayemi for a second term, rather than coming out to contest.

They noted that he is one of the indigenes of the State who has enjoyed the progressives’ party more, after serving as a Commissioner for eight years and also compensated with House of Representatives when the ticket for Senatorial candidate was handled over to Femi Ojudu.

One of them, Akin Olotu said “what does Opeyemi want again from the party whom he had benefited from for so long? He should have supported Fayemi no matter the case and wait patiently for his own time. He is just one of those who had betrayed Asiwaju Tinubu and I am afraid, if Opeyemi loses this election, this may be the end of his political career”

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