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2019: Crisis hits as aspirants protest alleged disqualification

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By Rotimi Ojomoyela
ADO-EKITI—THERE waspandemonium yesterday at  the Ekiti   State Secretariat of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP,  as angry aspirants for National Assembly    elections in the 2019 general polls   stormed the secretariat with their supporters to protest   alleged imposition.

Mamoth crowd at the Ekiti Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Mega Rally in Ado-Ekiti

The aspirants for the six House of Representatives  seats  and their supporters at about 11.25am besieged the party’s Secretariat located along Ajilosun area of Ado-Ekiti and forcefully shut down the Secretariat,  over alleged imposition   by Governor Ayodele Fayose.

The angry protesters called on the National Chairman of the party, Chief Uche Secondus to overrule the Screening Committee, which had earlier disqualified the aspirants.

They also accused the members of the Screening Committee, led by Mr  Seye Shonuga of allegedly subverting the process to give way for automatic tickets to Fayose’s close allies and present  occupants of the seats.

The supporters of the aspirants beat up members of the Appeal Committee, led by Mr Kazeem Oladipupo and State   Working Committee, SWC, of the party that were at the Secretariat to entertain their complaints.

The Chairman of the Screening Committee was said to have been ferried out of the venue by party men and security agencies  to prevent the irate party members from descending on him.

The aspirants who forcefully opened the Secretariat located in Ajilosun area of Ado Ekiti, smashed the louvers to send a signal that they were prepared to take on the governor.

The aggrieved aspirants, who were vying for the   House of Representatives in their various federal   constituencies include: Mr Segun Olanipekun, Ademola Salami, Temitope Oluwatosin Ajayi, Goke Omidiran, Chief David Arowolo, Adekunle Ojo, Ibrahim Mumini Adewale,   Mr. Victor Alale and Mrs Kemi Adewumi .

Speaking on behalf of the aggrieved contestants, Mr Segun Olanipekun, accused the Screening Committee of doing the bidding of Fayose to edge them out of the primary, noting that “It   was bad for the PDP that just lost the governorship election   to be behaving in this manner.

“We were supposed to be given the opportunity to test our popularity in the primaries rather than resorting to imposition.”

When contacted, the State Publicity Secretary of the party, Mr Jackson Adebayo, said: “I don’t want to comment on an issue I have not been adequately briefed. I don’t want to join issues with them, because they must have told  lies. But let me clarify that the party has not hold its primaries. The primaries for the House of Representatives, Senate and House of Assembly will be held on September 30, October 1 and 3 respectively.”

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