- We are receiving more defections from APC – Lere Olayinka counters
Wole Balogun, Ado Ekiti
Senate Deputy Minority Whip Senator Biodun Olujimi has raised concerns that the Ekiti State PDP is losing members to opposition parties ahead of the July 14 governorship poll.
She blamed the alleged defections on the attitude of Governor Ayo Fayose towards the coming election, with Deputy Governor Kolapo Olusola Eleka as the party standard bearer, while others opposed to his candidacy losing out.
Mrs Olujimi said party members are leaving in droves to the All Progressives Congress (APC), Social Democratic Party (SDP), Action Democratic Party (ADP), Mega Party of Nigeria (MPN), among others.
But Lere Olayinka who now doubles as Governor Ayo Fayose’s Special Assistant on Communication and New Media, as well as Director of Media and Publicity for the Kolapo Olusola Campaign Organisation (KOCO), has faulted Olujimi’s claims, saying that apart from the fact that the few members leaving the PDP in Ekiti are leaving for selfish, anti-party motives, the party is receiving numerous defectors from other parties daily, especially from the the ranks of main rival APC.
The lawmaker representing Ekiti South senatorial district made the allegation in a press statement issued by the Biodun Olujimi Team (BOT) at the end of its meeting at the weekend, where the last PDP governorship primary was reviewed.
The press statement, signed by its Coordinator General, Chief Bunmi Olugbade, was made available to newsmen on Sunday.
The group hailed Mrs Olujimi for her courage in contesting in the PDP governorship primary in the face of alleged “intimidation, threat and in the name of achieving a predetermined result.”
While stressing that they shall remain in the PDP as members and stakeholders, the BOT passed a “vote of absolute confidence in Senator Olujimi.”
They resolved that “We abhor and shall resist all forms of threat, oppression, victimization and humiliation.
“We shall remain resolute, fearless and courageous in our demand for internal democracy, justice, rule of law, fairness and equity within the PDP in achieving the ideals, aims and objectives which Senator Olujimi stands for.”
They added: “We separated the real, fearless PDP owners from the coerced, appointed delegates who voted against their conscience for fear of being removed as councilors, council chairmen and vice chairmen, party executives and honorable members by their sole appointer and sole administrator as against the PDP constitution (as amended in 2017).
Reacting to Olujimi, Olayinka said: “Movement of politicians from one party to the other is not new, most importantly when personal ambitions are involved.
“As some people are moving out of PDP because of their personal ambition, others are also coming to the PDP from other parties, especially APC.
“Today, no one can fault the PDP primary election that produced Prof. Kolapo Olusola Eleka, addressing the candidate. Even those that are now complaining told the world that the primary election was free, fair and credible. They promised to support whoever that emerged as the candidate.
“Any complaint from such people is nothing but afterthought, occasioned by ambition that is beyond the interest PDP and Ekiti State.
“We are reaching out to those who are aggrieved genuinely and, most importantly, we are confident that having done well to win the confidence of Ekiti people, PDP will win the July 14 election,” Olayinka said.