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Regional News of Friday, 24 December 2021


Ekiti: Fayemi won’t impose candidate –Bamidele

The photo used to illustrate the story The photo used to illustrate the story

Governorship aspirant in Ekiti State and Chairman, Senate Committee on Judiciary, Human Rights and Legal Matters, Opeyemi Bamidele, has declared that Governor Kayode Fayemi will not want to destroy the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the state by imposing a candidate in the 2022 governorship primary.

He described himself as the best for the Ekiti Government House in 2022 considering his wealth of experience spanning  over 30 years cutting across the three arms of government.

He spoke at the party Secretariat in Ajilosun, Ado-Ekiti, yesterday, when he formally declared his interest in the race.

Addressing the party leaders, Bamidele, said his superlative contributions in the Senate included his being instrumental to the passage of a bill for the establishment of a Medical Science University and a branch of Law School in Ekiti, saying they are well amplified testimonials to his competence to lead Ekiti.

Giving a summary of his achievements as a senator, Bamidele revealed that he had secured employments for 79 citizens of Ekiti and had empowered over 4,000 persons in his senatorial district, including physically challenged.

On why he decided to join the race, Bamidele said: “We will strive hard to ensure that we don’t create crisis for APC. I am particularly happy that the party had not endorsed anybody or is under any instruction to impose anybody. I know that Governor Kayode Fayemi won’t do anything that will scatter the party as a leader, I am confident that this will not happen.

“The January 22 primary is not the ultimate but how to win the June 18 election. I am convinced that the Chairman is a gentleman, I have known some of you for a long time as men of integrity. I am comfortable with the leadership and our governor. I know that the governor can’t impose neither me nor anyone, for the sake of our party. I won’t be a politician that will terrify Ekiti, I will rather work for its comfort.

“We can’t fight because of party primary. This is a family affair. I won’t do anything that will cause tension in Ekiti and APC. Only one person will be candidate and we should all work together and claim the victory together.

“I am not the only one that is qualified to be Governor, but I have qualities that can make me outstanding Governor. There are three arms of government, Judiciary, Executive and Legislature. In  the Judiciary, I belong to the body of benchers, the  highest decision making body in the sector . As the Chairman of the committee on Judiciary in the Senate, we superintend over all Federal Courts and other judicial institutions in this country.

“Again, I was a member of the state executive council as commissioner in Lagos under two governors for 11 years. I had been member of House of Representatives and now a senator. So, I have experiences in the judiciary, executive and legislative arms.”

He urged the party to give him the ticket and win easily,

“Ekiti people are ready to vote for me, they are waiting for me already. And if APC refuses to give me, I won’t get these ready votes. So, APC must give the ticket to a popular person, one who can win election easily,” Bamidele said.

“When I was in the House of Representatives, I was coming home on weekly basis, and that gave some people opportunity to cause trouble between myself and my friend and confidant, Dr Kayode Fayemi. But we have agreed not to fight again and that will never happen.

That was why I have decided to stay away from Ekiti, because I don’t want to heat up the system that can cause crisis”.

Reminiscing on the shooting of December 1, 2018, when he was Director General of Fayemi reelection campaign organisation at the party secretariat, Bamidele said: “I believed that I have been saved by God to serve Ekiti people . I was saved for the sake of this time. Let me also say that I have nobody to fight  If anybody wants to fight me over this governorship, tell them I am not ready for any fight.

“If you give me the ticket, I will make you proud as a governor, I will even make you proud in my scientific campaign and how best to handle the party and give them respect that they deserve.”

The APC State Chairman, Paul Omotoso, who spoke on behalf of the State Working Committee (SWC), described Bamidele as a respectable individual, assuring that the party will not impose any aspirant in the coming primary.

Before coming to the party Secretariat, Bamidele was received by mammoth crowd of admirers, including commercial motorcycle operators and drivers, who had a procession from Ilawe road  to the party Secretariat.