Former Secretary of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Ekiti State, Dr. Tope Aluko, has said the January 24 Federal High Court judgement has ended a one-man dictatorship allegedly foisted on the party by Governor Ayo Fayose.
Aluko who spoke in a radio interview at the weekend claimed that primary elections to select candidates were jettisoned for selection through casting of lots with papers marked “yes” and “no” inside the Government House, Ado Ekiti which he said violated both the Constitution and the Electoral Act.
Describing the act as “gambling in the Government House”, Aluko said this has denied the party members opportunity to elect quality candidates at primaries and turned the party to the governor’s personal estate.
He claimed that Fayose gave undue advantage to his loyalists who followed him to Labour Party (LP) where he ran as a senatorial candidate in the 2011 general elections while those who stayed back and built the party were sidelined and victimized.
Aluko said: “We brought him back to the party but he used the opportunity to establish the LP returnees. After winning the 2014 governorship election, he said we longer have any party again that what we now have is a governor but I said no.
“He was playing God and he decided to move (former state chairman) Makanjuola Ogundipe to the Southwest to fully secure control of the party. He called us that he wanted to have a free hand to select Assembly members and we said no, that there should be free and fair primaries.
“Ogundipe said if care is not taken, this man would turn to an emperor. Coming on board, he started up g gambling style, rolling papers marked ‘yes’ and ‘no’ to determine who becomes party leaders, Assembly members and local government election candidates.
“Can there be a strong party and what is happening in Ekiti Assembly and ministries will be happening? Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice is an LP returnee, Fayose himself is an LP returnee, head of the legislature, Kola Oluwawole is an LP returnee.
“Out of 26 House of Assembly members, 18 are LP returnees; 48 out of 50 cabinet members are LP returnees. It was impunity and imposition galore but we thank God that the court judgment has ended the dictatorship of one man.
“It was a landmark judgment and you cannot say that Justice Taiwo Taiwo was biased because it was the same judge that ordered EFCC to unfreeze Fayose’s accounts.
“This verdict has given our party a new lease of life and we are calling our leaders and members who left in frustration to return so that we can build it together.
“We don’t have problems with my PDP member or leader at ward, local government and state levels. We are not talking about commissioners, special advisers but we are talking about party leaders like Prof. Tunde Adeniran, Senator Clement Awoyelu, Dr. Ayo Olaiya, Cyril Fasuyi who are leaders in their local government area