The Publicity Secretary of the Labour Party in Ekiti State, Mrs Bolanle Olatunde-Bruce, says the incumbent governor in Ekiti State, Kayode Fayemi, lost in the governorship election held on Saturday because he took the people that voted him in for granted.
Though the Election has come and gone, lessons from it will continue to linger in the hearts of people, especially politicians in Nigeria.
Mrs Olatunde told Channels Television on Tuesday that the election was free and fair, but listed other circumstances that must have led to Ayodele Fayose’s victory over Fayemi.
On the conduct of the election, the Labour Party spokesperson said materials got to various polling units very early, with early accreditation of electorates also achieved.
“There was no problem at all. Everyone was happy with the election. Voting started at about 12:30pm in most polling centres. By 2:30pm, voting was concluded,”she said, admitting that the election was credible, free and fair.
Strength Of Labour Party
When asked why the Labour Party gubernatorial candidate stepped down before the election, she stated that “on Monday the All Progressives Congress (APC), the incumbent governor’s party, went to town, saying that the Labour Party’s standard flag bearer, Honourable Opeyemi Bamidele, had stepped down for the APC. Then, on Tuesday evening, it was rumoured that Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) had asked him to step down from the Election”.
She said that a bulk SMS, asking members of the Labour to vote for the PDP candidate, went viral on Saturday morning. Mrs Olatunde-Bruce stressed that the SMS was not from their candidate and that the Party had planned to win the Election.
“We have 2,195 polling units in the state and the Labour Party has a minimal of 250 registered members and over 600 members in several other polling units. When the flag bearer of the party contested for the House of Representative in two Local Government Areas, he polled over 47,000 votes and he won because he was loved by the people and other party members voted for him,” she said, explaining the chances of the party’s candidate making a remarking feat in the election.
Lesson From The Election
She pointed out that there were lessons to be learnt from the Ekiti Election, listing them as: “Don’t take the people you are ruling for granted, Don’t play god when you have an opportunity to serve, you are not a leader if you don’t have the followership and always bear in mind that there are so much intrigues in Politics that you can’t predict what’s going on in politics”.
Just like most persons, she expressed surprise at the result of the polls, narrating how her Party had traversed Ekiti, sold the manifesto for change to the Electorate and never took the social class for granted. “The brand we sold to the Ekiti people was good and the people loved the candidate but so many things went on which will be discussed later on,” she said.
Mrs Olatunde-Bruce explained that there were so many things that were wrong, but she said that “sometimes a battle is lost for a war to be won”.
She said that Governor Faryemi tried his best but that the best was not considered good enough.
“For us the election result has been able to prove that the two annex of incumbency should be done away with completely in Nigeria. When people put you in a position of leadership, don’t forget who put you there,” She emphasised.
According to her, the People of Ekiti State were angry with the incumbent governor. “Forty-three months are such a long time and the out-going government failed the people of Ekiti in so many ways, coupled with the huge debt profile of Ekiti.
Highlighting more on the issue, she said that “during the reign of the out-going governor, there were nine extra-judicial killings in Ekiti State which are disappointing”.
On the unemployment rate in the state, she also said that several masters degree holders in Ekiti were ‘okada riders’ (commercial motorcyclists), a situation she described as absolutely abysmal.
Speaking on the grassroots governance, she said: “The out-going governor didn’t put things in place. The government had a poor governance strategy, the Ekiti Governor does not need to visit 122,000 villages if he had put the right materials in place . In the history of Ekiti State, his administration has the largest retinue of aids”.
On the future of the Labour Party, she insisted that “it is very bright”, having all structure in place, with Bamidele seen as a game changer in the election.
Asked if the Labour Party will go to court, she said: “No we are not going to court”.