These are indeed interesting times in Ekiti state. Political issues tend to spring up everyday by nature of the conflict of interest within and without the ruling PDP and opposition APC. Few days after the news broke that he had concluded plans to return to the PPD, ex-Speaker of the House of Assembly, Hon. Olufemi Bamisile on Monday addressed journalists to pooh-pooh the idea and call those behind the news names. Just when he was getting the upper hand in what is fast becoming a saga, his close friend the to spring up, one Mr Bolaji Jeje told news men that the former Speaker lied and disclosed that he indeed brokered the peace meeting between Governor Ayodele Fayose and Bamisile.
As things stand now there is a muddle and the accusation and counter-accusations are reigning. According to the former Speaker, returning to the PDP would be like asking him to go back to his “vomit”. Bamisile, in a statement on Monday stated that he has always been and would always remain a committed member of the All Progressives Congress (APC) , who “was more resolute in his resolve to emerge as the next governor of the state in the 2018 polls”. In his own version of the story, he said he had a meeting with some paramount traditional rulers in his local government area of Ekiti East, only for Governor Ayo Fayose to join midway.
He said: “It is no news that Ekiti APC is back on her track, having learnt from her lessons in governance and politics of Ekiti State. I had offered myself as the biblical Nehemiah, who rebuilt the fallen walls of Jerusalem. “Indeed, I had a meeting with the traditional kings, where Governor Fayose joined. He said I would be given the ticket of the PDP, if I return to his party and held my legs, begging that the kings should plead with me. “I snubbed and immediately left him in the room because I think it was unhealthy for our political system, if we soil the hands of our traditional kings into the dirty mud of politics.”
Bamisile said the governor has come under strong pressure as a result of his activities and APC in the state. “Without being immodest and with the utmost regards for all leaders of the party, I am the symbol of the party, as it is today. I am re-invigorating the party. He said adding: “I am providing the required engine oil to the party wheels, so that the weakened spirit of party faithful will not eventually knock down the whole system. “I understand that Fayose would want to stop this new tempo. So, I am not bothered. Let it be announced on the mountain top of our most beloved state and beyond that I will never return to my vomit – never”.
But according to the earlier news the former Speaker and APC governorship aspirant, Hon had made tremendous move to rejoin the Peoples Democratic Party. As part of the efforts to seal the deal, Bamisile met with Governor Ayodele Fayose at a popular hotel located along Ado-Iworoko road and owned by a prominent trado-medical practitioner on Sunday, where they held a one hour closed door meeting. Fayose, who drove himself into the hotel in an metallic coloured Kia Optima , wore a white ‘Jalamia’ and he immediately went straight to a section of the hotel , where the meeting was held. Four prominent traditional rulers also attended the meeting, that took many of the hotel customers, who were familiar with the politics of the State, by surprise. The commissioner for Environment, Chief Bisi Kolawole, who was Bamisile’s colleague in the Ekiti third Assembly and two prominent members of the PDP ,were also present .
Two notable APC members accompanied the former number three men to the meeting, which signaled that he would be dumping the APC along with notable members of the party when the deal is finally sealed. When the duo descended from the hotel, they refused to speak with the pressmen, who had patiently waited for the two politicians to make appearance But their countenances depicted that they had a fruitful deliberation, as they moved closely to each other and exchanged words as they descended the staircase . When journalists pressed further by moving towards Fayose to extract some facts from him, he quickly moved into his car and drove off . Bamisile defected to APC barely a week to the June 21, 2014 governorship election, following irreconcilable differences with Fayose.
In his reaction made available to The UNION, Mr Bolaji Jeje has described as a shameless lie Bamisile’s claim that the State Governor, Mr Ayodele Fayose begged him to return to the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) a shameless Jeje, who brokered the meeting held with Governor Fayose in Ado Ekiti on Sunday, said while reacting to claim that it was Governor Fayose that went after Bamisile, begging him to return to the PDP that he was actually the one Bamisile approached to broker his return to PDP. Bolaji Jeje, who hails from Efon Alaaye, disclosed that himself and Bamisile met with Governor Fayose at Eko Hotel, Lagos last week Monday, August 17 at about 12:30am. He said he was disappointed that Bamisile who came to him, begging that he should facilitate his return to the PDP could address the press to lie that Governor Fayose begged him to return to the PDP. He said; “As a friend, I feel very disappointed in Femi.
Here is someone who came to me in Efon Alaaye to plead that I should facilitate his meeting with Governor Fayose. “After we discussed at Efon Alaaye, I told Governor Fayose, who told me pointedly that Femi couldn’t be trusted. But because of the way he (Bamisile) spoke to me, I persuaded the governor to give him audience and we both met with the governor at Eko Hotel on Monday, August 17. “We were together in Eko Hotel till around 3am and I challenge Bamisile to deny these facts. “It was at the Eko Hotel meeting that the meeting held on Sunday was agreed upon, with the governor insisting that traditional rulers must be part of the meeting and it must be made known to the press. “Bamisile was the one who begged Governor Fayose at the Eko Hotel meeting and the agreement reached was for him (Bamisile) to return to PDP this week because he said he was going to travel abroad next week Monday.
“I am therefore shocked and disappointed that Bamisile could go to town, lying that it was Governor Fayose that begged him to return to PDP. “As a friend, who meant well for him, it will be honourable for him to retract that statement and come before the public to admit that he actually sought my intervention to pave way for his return to PDP.” The former number three man from Kota Ekiti in Ekiti East Local Government area of Ekiti State worked with former governor Kayode Fayemi, recently declared his intention to contest for the governorship election billed for 2018. Aside setting up his campaign team, he had started the tour of the 177 wards in the state in advancement of his gubernatorial aspiration on the platform of the APC. During his meeting with the APC State Working Committee last Friday with his governorship campaign team, Bamisile said with him leading the pack, that APC has no reason to rely on federal might to defeat Fayose in the coming election. The drama is still unfolding and in the nest few days, more is sure to follow.
-Emmanuel Ani In Ado Ekiti captures the unfolding drama over the proposed move by the former House of Assembly Speaker to defect from the APC to the PDP