The Ekiti State Deputy Governor, Kolapo Olusola, has insisted that his endorsement as the party’s candidate for next year’s governorship election by party stakeholders in the state is legal and in line with the constitution of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP.
He spoke on the heels of the condemnation of his endorsement by the party’s National Publicity Secretary, Dayo Adeyeye, who is also aspiring to be governor of the state on the platform of the party.
Mr. Adeyeye, who earlier spoke trough his campaign organisation, Prince Adedayo Adeyeye Movement, stated that the adoption was a “clear breach of the PDP’s Constitution and the provisions of the Electoral Act (as amended).”
He followed that up with his resignation as the pro-chancellor of the Ekiti State University.
Another aspirant, and senator representing Ekiti South, Biodun Olujinmi, said a larger percentage of those who endorsed Mr. Olusola were not eligible delegates to the PDP primaries.
But Mr. Olusola argued that contrary to the position canvassed Mr. Adeyeye, his endorsement neither shut the ambitions of other contenders nor prevented the conduct of primaries.
He also said that the National Working Committee led by Ahmed Makarfi would conduct primaries for all aspirants, assuring that he would defeat other contenders with the support of Mr. Fayose and other critical stakeholders.
Mr. Olusola was endorsed as the sole candidate for the governorship election by stakeholders of the party at a meeting in Ado-Ekiti on Wednesday.
Addressing a crowd at Ikere-Ekiti on Friday, Mr. Olusola thanked the state governor, Ayo Fayose, for adopting him, saying his boss’ presidential aspiration would be a reality.
“It is normal for a candidate to be adopted by a caucus of a party. But mine adoption is far beyond a caucus arrangement,” he said.
“What I mean is that all the state local government party chairmen, all serving state commissioners, councillors and ward chairmen and who is who in the party have come together to adopt me as their preferred candidate, it is a noteworthy development.
“So, we appreciate our party leaders and everyone for finding me worthy as their candidate.
“My emergence does not foreclose other aspirants from contesting. We still have the party primaries ahead. We have a constitution that is to be followed. However, I am very sure of emerging the party’s overall candidate at the primaries because I have the support of all the leaders and members.
“The truth is that when two or three people are contesting for a post, it will definitely get to only one person and others may not be happy initially. But as time goes on, everything will be settled. I want to encourage other aspirants that they have the opportunity to contest
and there is no bad blood.
“What we have done is not unconstitutional because we have not said this is the final candidate, it is just an adoption by a wide range of stakeholders who would actively take part in the primaries. That simply means I have a large base of support.”
Mr. Olusola later visited the palace of the Ogoga of Ikere-Ekiti, Samuel Alagbado, for his royal blessing and prayers for a successful governorship campaign.