By Abdulrasheed Akogun
Two weeks after the conduct of the National Assembly and Gubernatorial Primaries of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Kwara State, the dust raised by the exercise has failed to settle or abate, this medium can report.
The recent allegation is coming from the kinsmen of Sen. Makanjuola Ajadi, one of the A-list Senatorial Aspirants in the primaries from Ifelodun local government area of Kwara State.
The group under the auspices of Concerned Ifelodun Youth and Stakeholders made this allegation while protesting the refusal of the party leadership to give the Ifelodun/Offa/Oyun House of Representatives ticket to one of the five Aspirants from the local government, stressing that the seeming neglect of the local government which boost of 18 political wards might be suicidal for the party in the 2019 elections.
The protesters who matched to the Agric State Secretariat of APC in ilorin in their thousands, bemoaned the lack of equity and fairness in the way the leadership of the APC at the State and National have conducted it affairs especially with the candidate selection process which according to them doesn’t take into cognisance “political realities on ground”.
Addressing newsmen after the protest, the leader of the team, Hon. Ebun Oyeleye, decried a situation where ” Ifelodun with 18 wards with more than 100,000 thousand voters would be sidelined for Offa and Oyun local government with a combined ward of 24 and below 50,000 thousand voting strength.
Excerpts from the press statement signed on behalf of the group by Hon. Ebun Oyeleye reads “It is unfortunate that the injustice against our own people started with one of us, in person of Sen. Suleiman Makanjuola Ajadi, a Senatorial Aspirant from Ifelodun LG, who felt the aspiration of House of Representatives Aspirants from the same local government with him poses a threat to his Senatorial ambition, and therefore making desperate efforts to stop them.
” We can tell you authoritatively that virtually all results of the primaries submitted to the National Working Committee (NWC) were doctored and did not reflect the interest of party faithful at the grassroot.
“This was made possible because collation officers were hoarded in Sen. Ajadi’s residence, where results were only written to suit his personal interest and principally, against the House of Representatives Aspirants to clear coast for his Senatorial ambition. We feel seriously cheated and it is our hope that the party hierarchy redeem our stolen mandate, which will help reaasure our people that APC is truly a party based on the solid principle of fairness and justice” he stressed.
On the demands of the group, it reads, “It should be on record that seven Aspirants showed interest and participated in the primaries, it is only an Ifelodun Son that has significant number of genuine votes within and outside his local government, signifying our general acceptability across the federal constituency, while the primaries reflected the historic feud and animosity between the two ibolo communities Offa and Oyun which might likely affect our party’s chances at the polls.
” It is consequent upon the aforestated background that we unanimously demand the restoration of our well deserve mandate (ticket) by giving the ticket to Ifelodun. Regardless of whomever we feel is most suited to represent us, all we demand that one of the 5 Aspirants from Ifelodun namely, Chief Rex Olawoye, Barr. Lanre Falola, Gbenga Oyetola, Arch. Olu Abogunrin and Oladipo Ola Peters should picked as the party’s candidate.
“Should our party ignore our demands and swiftly return the ticket to the rightful owner (Ifelodun), it would be seen as a deliberate attempt to absolutely stripe us of National Assembly Representation and we will therefore boycott the National Assembly elections, by staying away as we have no interest to protect at the election” it stressed.
All attempts at getting the reaction of Sen. Makanjuola Ajadi to the allegation proved abortive as numerous calls place to his mobile phone were unanswered nor text messages seeking clarification responded as at the time of filing this report.