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Bamidele drops threat to challenge APC primary

By Ayodele Afolabi, Ado-Ekiti
12 February 2022   |   4:04 am
The Senator representing Ekiti Central Senatorial District of Ekiti State and a governorship aspirant in the recently concluded All Progressives Congress (APC) primary, Opeyemi Bamidele...

Senators Opeyemi Bamidele (APC, Ekiti Central)

The Senator representing Ekiti Central Senatorial District of Ekiti State and a governorship aspirant in the recently concluded All Progressives Congress (APC) primary, Opeyemi Bamidele, has said he would not be challenging the victory of the party’s candidate, Mr. Biodun Oyebanji, in court for the sake of unity and cohesion in the party.

Bamidele had shortly after the primary, which he boycotted alongside six other aggrieved aspirants, vowed to challenge the outcome of the exercise, alleging that the Governor Abubakar Badaru-led APC committee brazenly manipulated it.

But in a statement he personally signed yesterday, and made available to journalists in Ado Ekiti, Bamidele said he recanted on his earlier position after critical stakeholders intervened and appealed to him to sheathe his sword.

The senator said though he still harbours resentment against the January 27 primary, which he described as a sham and charade, he wouldn’t seek redress in court or defect from APC.

Bamidele maintained that he was dissatisfied with the alleged shoddy way the primary went and the betrayal of confidence therein, but said his action didn’t connote that he had abandoned the struggle to right the wrongs and make the party truly democratic.

His words: “Yet, in spite of my strong convictions as expressed above, I have come to some irreversible conclusions and these are the messages I need to pass on to all and sundry today as I temporarily break my silence on the way forward. One is to say that I have chosen to drop the option of going to the court with the party.

“The other is to make it crystal clear to everyone that both my supporters and I will not defect from APC. Details of the reasons, which informed these choices, will be communicated at a later date when my supporters and I will address Ekiti people and Nigerians at large. It is not just about me.

“It is about the unity and progress of Ekiti State and her politically undermined and economically afflicted people. It is also about ensuring that the ground is not prepared for reactionary beneficiaries to take advantage of seeming lack of capacity to manage our affairs as a ruling party in the state.

“I also must coordinate and lead my own aspect of this popular struggle in a way to ensure that my supporters and stakeholders who had been isolated from the mainstream of the party become relevant again, for anything short of that can only be a highway to nowhere.

“We have all contributed so much to building this party in Ekiti and the management as well as its decision making process cannot be an exclusive preserve of a few.

“That is the new reality that those in control, including our national leadership must accept it or it becomes a popular subject matter of a struggle around which a popular movement must be built. This is where I stand.”