Ayodele Arise, one of the leading gubernatorial aspirants in Ekiti state on the platform of All Progressives Congress (APC), has advised the leadership of the party not to allow any mistake during party’s primary election holding in May 5, 2018, as being expected by the incumbent governor of the state, Ayo Fayose.
The former senator, who represented Ekiti North Senatorial district between 2007 and 2011 gave this piece of advice to the leadership of the party on Monday while addressing newsmen at the party’s National secretariat after he had picked his nomination form of interest to contest the governorship seat of the state.
According to him, the party may make grave error if the leadership tries to impose a candidate on any other aspirants, adding that if he won the ticket in a free and fair contest, that is the end of the incumbent party ruling in the state.
He said, “Today, I have the unique advantage of bringing people in the general elections, hitting Fayose when he talks because he knows that if I win this ticket, he knows he is ‘goner’.
“He is waiting for us to make a mistake and that mistake can come from maybe the party is trying to impose anybody, God forbids! I am sure that will not happen.
“I don’t think the party will make a mistake of being the one deciding who will govern Ekiti apart form the delegates that will vote, it would be a very serious error because Ekiti people are very unique, very tough-minded people. You have seen several of us, so, they are very highly educated and highly cerebral.
“So, everybody running understands what’s right and limits her and we have put it to ask this question from the chairman of the party, and he allayed the fears of everybody that this should be a very free and fair elections.
“So, we have a sitting governor who is in the opposition and if you say who is the loudest noisemaker in the country of all the governors, I think he will qualify to be one of the top two if not number one. So, he is ready to be shouting to high-heaven.”
Reacting to President Muhammadu Buhari’s recent second term bid declaration, Arise described him as a man of integrity, saying he emerged in 2015 after fourth attempt and ran on the premise of change, the promise of integrity, the promise of fighting corruption and the promise of securing life-support importance.
He noted, “Now, if you had listened to any of my comments in the past, I have always supported this President, when he came in, he came in and ran on the premise of change, the premise of integrity, the promise of fighting corruption and the promise of securing life-support importance.
“There have been challenges along the line but I don’t believe these can be achieved in just 3 years in government. I believe apart from governance being a continuum, I believe that if I want to tar a road between here and Lagos, then the life of the regime might not be able to finish it. So, things are not as quick as you expected to see it.
“But my question is, if this man is saying we should stop stealing in this country and all that, people should use the money to develop the country, are we not going to support him for as long as possible, as long as he’s physically fit?
“And we can see that since the president recovered from his ailments, he’s being up to the task, he’s being very agile, he looks healthier by the day, so, I think for me personally, for the programmes that have been set in place, they should be able to give him the chance that is allowed by the constitution to complete the projects that he has started and the policies.”