As the race to the 2023 presidency gathers momentum, a former Minister of Police Affairs, Alhaji Jelili Adesiyan, has said Nigeria needs the service of the Ekiti State Governor, Dr. Kayode Fayemi to salvage the country.
Adesiyan canvassed support for Fayemi at the All Progressives Congress (APC) secretariat in Ado Ekiti yesterday, when a governorship aspirant in Ekiti, Chief Demola Popoola declared his aspiration at the weekend.
Describing Fayemi as a good leader, Adesiyan appealed to Popoola to build on the legacy being the governor would leave behind if he eventually wins the poll. He said: “Let me say this clearly, in Nigeria today, I have not seen any governor that is better than Fayemi. That is why Nigeria needs the incumbent governor in 2023 to reposition our nation”.
While addressing the party leaders, Popoola said the party “stands a good chance of winning the 2022 governorship election if it conducts a free, fair and credible primary on January 22.”
Popoola averred that the only thing he solicited from the party “is allowing a level playing ground during the primary,” describing this as the best way to have an easy ride in the June 18 poll.
Popoola expressed confidence in the ability of the party leaders to exhibit unbiased dispositions and act as true umpires in the primary.
He said: “I know Ekiti APC is being led by people with conscience, who lead by principles, trust and with the fear of God. They are unbiased; they portrayed themselves as fathers to all of us.
“I have never condemned any aspirant since I began my campaign and that is why I believe that the APC primary will be so peaceful, because we are all friends and by the grace of God, APC will be victorious in June 18 election.
“If God makes me governor, I will show respect to the party and uplift Ekiti people to a desired level. I started my politics as a Chairman of my estate in Lagos, where I was consulted to be a leader, which I gleefully obliged. I did that for four consecutive terms.
“People were still begging that I should remain there because I showed good leadership. I was the first to collect nomination form to vie for Ekiti governor in APC. But I plead with our leaders not to allow flesh to choose for our party. Let us look beyond the primary. Give us free and fair primary. hat is what I solicit from you as leaders,” Popoola explained.
Popoola added that the party could attest to his impressive performances and contributions to APC by way of mobilisation of the people at the grassroots, assuring that he would sustain the tempo to lead APC to victory in the June 18 election.
The Chairman of Ekiti APC, Paul Omotoso reiterated that the party “has no adopted aspirant. All the contestants are free to plunge into the race and win the primary if they mobilise well.
“We do not harbour hatred against anyone, we are for everybody. Otunba Popoola is a friend of this party. Since he started his campaign, he has never left us. He has stood by us. He has been mobilising for the party.
“He has given his best to the party and he deserves the best from the party. He has paid his price and good result awaits him in APC. We will guarantee free, fair, credible and acceptable governorship primary.
“I was the State Secretary of Ekiti APC during the primary that brought in Fayemi in 2018. We did everything with integrity. We cannot impose because we knew the consequences.
“You could all recall that no aspirant out of the 32 that contested the primary with Fayemi went to court to challenge his emergence then, because the process was credible,” he explained.