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How Ekiti governorship election was fought, won and lost

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Olusesan Laoye

At last the Ekiti governorship election has been held and a winner has emerged.

It was a history making election, which saw a political party taking over from itself, which has never happened before in the history of the state.

At the end of the polls in which the result was announced early morning on Sunday June 19 2022, the All Progressives Congress retained power with its candidate Abiodun Oyebanji  beating his two other strong rivals.

This means that the incumbent governor Kayode Fayemi would hand over to his anointed political son in the same political party, which is historical in the politics of Ekiti State.

Before now no incumbent has handed over to another person from the same party and no incumbent has won a straight second term but they have always come back to complete their second term. Ayo Fayose and Kayode Fayemi are clear examples.

The third person who contested the just concluded election under the Social Democratic Party (SDP), Engineer Olusegun Oni who also left the government house and now wanted to come back like Fayose and Fayemi lost in his bid to the APC Oyebamiji who beat him and his Party the (SDP) to second place.

Oyebamiji the former Secretary to the Government under the present governor Kayode Fayemi, scored 187,057 votes, defeating his two closest challengers — Segun Oni of the Social Democratic Party (SDP) who polled 82,211 votes, and Bisi Kolawole of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), who got 67,457 votes.

The result came as it was predicted that the real battle was between the APC and the SDP. Before the election Segun Oni was the most favoured and it was said that the only way that could prevent him from clinching the governorship is money, since elections in Nigeria today comes with money and the highest bidder.

Although it was said that if the people of Ekiti vote their conscience, nothing would stop Oni who was said to have had no money to spend for the election but relied on the good will of the people to win.

He was even regarded as the best candidate of the three hot contenders, being a former governor who had ruled the state and is adjudged the best the State ever had.

What the election actually meant to him was that he may end his political journey in the State and he may not want to go for the governorship again. Even if he wants to, age and subsequent events which may have over taken his ambition may not be in his favour.

Another big wig in Ekiti politics who would be seriously battered with the result of the election is former Governor Ayodele Fayose.

It is said that with the election not favouring his political party, PDP, he would lose control of the party, since he has not been in good terms with other notable leaders of the party who actually patched things up with him for the purpose of the election.

Now that the the party and his annointed candidate, Bisi Kolawole who was believed to have been forced on the party against the wishes of members, a situation which made Oni leave for SDP has lost, it will be difficult for Fayose to hold the party together and he would be blamed by all that he made the the party to lose through the imposition of unpopular candidate against the wishes of the numerous party members and leaders.

The notion of the members and top shots of the party was that if Oni who had the support of the entire members had not left the party and was given the ticket, the party would have come back to power.

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According to a member of the party who was contacted on phone by the Business Hallmark last night, “the arrogance of Fayose made the party to lose to APC. You can imagine the number of votes pulled by Oni and if all of us had come together, it would have been easy victory for the PDP. This means that the party will have to wait for another four years to aspire to be in power.”

The source hinted that the process of derobing Fayose as the leader of the party in Ekiti State has actually startedo.

“It will not take long before he looses control because he made us to lose out,” he said.

The source said the party would now have to work hard for it to do well in other elections coming up in 2023.

“It is the 2023 elections into various assemblies in the country that can sustain the PDP as a party in the state and make it relevant. Otherwise, I will say that Fayose has killed the party with this governorship election, which ordinarily ought to have been an easy taķe for the PDP.”

The person who will benefit greatly from this election is Fayemi because he has proved that he controls the state and this would swell his political pedigree at the national level.

What this victory may also indicate is that the State is sure for the Presidential candidate of the APC, Bola Ahmed Tinubu.

If the APC had lost the governorship election it would have been a minus for his political ambition and clout in the party both in the state and at the national level, as he would not be a force to reckon with.

But now he has shown that he is in control of the state, which he governed for eight years. Though not consecutively.

With the final result below it was said that the last may not have been heard about the election and that the SDP is likely to contest the result in the law court.

Though no official statement has been made as at the time of filing this report one of the stalwarts of the party and the Director General of the Segun Oni Campaign organisation, Ambassador Dare Bejide who had the assurance that the people of Ekiti State would vote Oni who he regarded as the best, hinted that the party would not accept the result as he believed that there were discrepancies and manipulation in the result announced.

He claimed that the strong pillars of the SDP were intimidated and arrested a day to the election with the influence of those in power at the top and in the state.

The governorship candidate of the SDP, Oni had said the same thing on Friday afternoon claiming that his members were being arrested and taken to an unknown destination.

Meanwhile reports indicated that there were jubilations and merriment in Ado Ado Ekiti, the State capital and other parts of the state yesterday, by the APC members in respect of the victory of their candidate Oyebamiji.

Below are the final results of the election in all the local governments of the state.

Ijero LG

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APC 13754
PDP 4897
SDP 5006

Emure

APC. 7728
PDP. 2610
SDP. 3445

EKITI SW

APC – 9679
SDP – 4577
PDP – 4474

IKERE

APC – 12086
SDP – 1943
PDP – 3789

ILEJEMEJE

APC 4357
SDP. 2344
PDP 1157

MOBA

APC 11609
SDP. 4904
PDP. 3530

EFON

APC 4012
SDP 339
PDP 6303

EKITI WEST

APC 15322
SDP. 3863
PDP 3386

IREPODUN

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APC 13125
SDP. 5010
PDP 4712

OYE LG

APC 13396
SDP 5391
PDP 4122

ISE

APC 8074
SDP 5909
PDP 2588

IDO/OSI

APC 10321
SDP 9489
PDP 2871

IKOLE

APC 16417
SDP 5736
PDP 6266

ADO LG

APC 23831
SDP 15214
PDP 7575

EKITI EAST

APC 12099
SDP 4982
PDP 5230

Meanwhile, the opposition parties have alleged that the election was with a lot of malpractices as they accused one the political parties of vote buying.

Security operatives was also said to have arrested some people alleged to be agents of the ruling APC for an undisclosed offence at some polling units

Even the candidate of the APC was alleged to have been involved, the allegations which he denied saying there was nothing like vote buying by any member of his political party.

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