From Wole Balogun, Ado-Ekiti
an Ekiti socio-cultural group, E11, has elected Chief Kola Akosile as its new chairman to replace Mr. Femi Ajiniran after 10 years of leadership. The election took place at an extra-ordinary meeting of the group held in Ado-Ekiti, Ekiti State, as convened by its Board of Trustees (BoT).
Akosile disclosed that his emergence was to move the group forward noting that Senator Babafemi Ojudu was the first chairman succeeded by Ajiniran who spent 10 years. He said though the constitution allowed maximum of two terms of two years, but exigency made Ajiniran to spend more than four years while his own election was a child of necessity.
The club is reputed to have produced two governors; Segun Oni and Dr. Kayode Fayemi, current Minister of Mines and Steel. It also produced Ojudu and former member, House of Representatives, Bamidele Opeyemi.
Others elected are: Mrs. Yetunde Fosudo, vice chairman; Seyi Aiyeleso, general secretary; Mr. Tunde Dada, social secretary; Mr. Dele Morakinyo, public relations officer and Mr. Seyi Oluboba, treasurer. The group also inaugurated Political Committee headed by Chief Adetunji Orisalade with Chief Yomi Aluko, Prince Diran Adeleke and Mrs. Funke Owoseni as members
Messrs Tunji Olatunde and Seyi Oluboba are in the Economic Committee while Women Empowerment Committee is headed by Mrs. Funke Owoseni with Mrs. Yetunde Fosudo and Mrs. Toyin Ajakaiye as members. Youth Committee has Aiyeleso and Prince Aladesanmi as members
Meanwhile, another faction within the group loyal to Ojudu dissociated itself from the election. A release signed by Mr. Okuwafemi Ajayi stated that the former leadership was in contact.
A release recently signed by a former Deputy Speaker who doubles as the Chairman of the Political Committee of the group, Orisalade denied that the group was behind the gubernatorial ambition of Ojudu. He stated:
“Though Senator Ojudu is a frontline member of the association and qualified as per his ambition, he had never informed the association of his gubernatorial ambition, not to talk of his adoption, promotion and backing by the association.”
Ojudu who was quoted as saying “no decampee” would be allowed to flag the governorship ticket of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Ekiti, has described the media report about him as a deliberate attempt of the opposition to malign him.
Orisalade insisted: “E-11, as a group, never, at any time called upon, urged, promoted or adopted Ojudu as its candidate in the forthcoming gubernatorial election coming up in Ekiti State in 2018.” He said the group has not equally adopted any of the candidates already out in the race as no such agenda was tabled at its meetings.
He equally stated that all the statements credited to Ajiniran on the purported adoption of the senator as E-11 Candidate in the coming poll “should be disregarded and taken as his personal views, devoid of the group’s consent and consensus.” According to him, Ajiniran’s tenure had long expired after almost 10 years in the saddle:
“All opportunities afforded him to act as Interim Chairman to midwife the conduct of Elections of new Excos. was unfortunately flunked and the mandate expired on 15th July, 2017.
Consequently, b Mr Femi Ajiniran has no authority to speak as Chairman of E-11 and cannot speak on its behalf under any circumstances.”