Former governor of Ekiti State Ayodele Fayose and Senator Biodun Olujimi at war of word over the conduct. Peoples Democratic Party ward congresses which held in Ekiti State on Saturday
Olujimi is asking the Ward Congress Committee Chairman, the Deputy Governor of Taraba State, Haruna Manu, to uphold the result of the congress earlier held before his “late” arrival in Ekiti State or postpone a repeat of the congress to Sunday or Monday.
While Fayose, is insisting that congress held earlier was not conducted by the proper PDP assigned members for the congress, as such congress held later in the day was the only acceptable one
Senator OLUJIMI, while addressing journalists in Ado Ekiti said, “At 8am, everybody was at the various wards, the electoral officers conducted the ward congresses. The Independent National Electoral Commission, police, Department of State Services and Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps were there and everybody signed and dispersed at about 12.30pm.
“When the chairman of the electoral committee came in rather late about 3.15pm, he had to do protocols in the Government House to show his presence. He came into the party office at about 4pm. Then, he said well, since he had just come, the congress had to be redone.
“We were wondering why the congresses would be redone because it had been done and everybody had signed. We suspected that some people had compromised.” She advised Haruna Manu to either accept the result of the already conducted congress or postpone it to a proper date as against his insistence on Saturday evening. She alleged ulterior motive, said soldiers had been mobilized to go in buses to hijack election materials and threaten people so that they could write results for the congress as she accused Fayose’s lieutenants of being responsible for the activities.
She said, “All we are asking for is simple, if you are cancelling, let us do it at a proper date and time appointed by the party. When people are struggling like this, it smacks of failure. When you have failed, that is when you start struggling for little things.“But you find a set of people struggling to write results, we will not accept it. It will not happen. Except of course litigation and then we tear the party apart which I pray does not happen,”.
Meanwhile Fayose’s media aide, Lanre Olayinka, has denied allegations of writing reports of the congress, He said “It is the kind of normal complaints that you hear from people that are losing. People who are losing will always find something to blame. It is simple, conduct of congresses in the PDP is a function of the national body of the party.” the exercise was properly conducted later in the day by the officially designated electoral officials
He said the purported congresses conducted before the arrival of the “real” electoral officers were a ruse. “When the people from the state said they wanted to conduct the congress in the morning, we told them to wait for the officials assigned by the national headquarters.
“When the chairman came, he addressed the electoral officers for the 16 councils and gave them materials for their local government areas. They went ahead and conducted the congresses after that.
Fayose and Olujimi have been at war over the leadership of the party. They saw the congress to elect party officials at the ward level an opportunity to capture the party machinery