The controversy trailing the recognition of Fasua Oyeleye as the candidate of the Social Democratic Party (SDP) by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has shown no sign of abating as a faction of the party has maintained that it has no governorship candidate for the October 10 governorship.
This statement by the Tajudeen Adefisoye-led faction of the party means there was a breakdown in reconciliatory talks between the factions.
The spokesman for the faction, Remi Olayiwola, said on Wednesday that the recognition of Mr Oyeleye is being challenged in court and that the party had in principle no candidate for the governorship election.
In spite of the denouncement by the faction, Mr Oyeleye and his deputy governorship candidate, Ajayi Rachael Olufunmilayo are the recognised candidate on INEC’s list.
Two governorship candidates had emerged from both factions during their separate primaries conducted on the same day but at different locations in the state.
While Mr Oyeleye emerged from the Olu Agunloye-led group, Adekunle Saliu emerged from the primaries conducted by the Adefisoye group.
Mr Adefisoye represents Idanre/Ifedore federal constituency in the National Assembly.
According to Mr Olayiwola, his faction remained the authentic faction and would eventually decide the fate of the party.
“What I can tell you is that we do not have a candidate for the coming governorship election,” Mr Olayiwola told PREMIUM TIMES on the phone.
“We are currently discussing who we will support for the election, and when we finally take a decision we will let you know.”
But the deputy national chairperson of the party in the south, Olu Agunloye, told PREMIUM TIMES that the party’s candidate remained Mr Oyeleye, but noted that the party was in a crisis like other major parties.
He said it was a phenomenon common with politics in Nigeria which spelt uncertainty for the nation’s political system.
The crisis in the party began in July when members of the state working committee led by Korede Duyile were removed from office on account of the expiration of their tenure in office.
A caretaker committee was put in place by the national working committee but was rejected by Mr Duyile and his group. They eventually reconvened and suspended Mr Agunloye, alleging that he was involved in anti-party activities.
Mr Agunloye, however, said the crisis would affect the parties chances at the polls, even though it was already disadvantaged given the strength of the Peoples Democratic Party and All Progressives Congress in the state.