The last few days have not been too good for members and aspirants on the platform of the All Progressives Congress, APC, in Oyo State. Many hopes have been dashed. Many may never recover from the shock. They were not allowed to exercise their franchise. Governor Abiola Ajimobi is on imposition spree. Many aspirants are already counting their losses.
Unknown to them, Ajimobi had obtained one guber, 3 senatorial, 14 Reps and 32 Assembly tickets, for his anointed.
This was contrary to Ajimobi’s assurance that he had no anointed.
It started on Tuesday, a day after ex-CBN deputy governor, Adebayo Adelabu, emerged governorship candidate of the party. The day had been fixed for the party’s senatorial primaries. Party members, who had trouped out to venues of the primaries early in the morning, waited endlessly as Ajimobi was in the government house, asking aspirants to step down.
Days before then, he was said to have succeeded in forcing many governorship aspirants to step down for his anointed.
He did not step out of the facility, not even for his own senatorial primaries, that day. Dr Fola Akinosun, who had also obtained form to contest the primaries, was at the venue. “It was when Ajimobi heard that delegates may vote otherwise that he threatened the council chairmen to deliver the ticket for him. It was not that party members were not willing to vote for him; they were waiting for ‘mobilization fee’. The governor was ready to pay as he believed he deserved the ticket and council chairmen should take care of it,” one of the party leaders disclosed.
Only Dr AbdulFatai Buhari, who currently represents Oyo North senatorial district, had his nomination affirmed as nobody sought to contest the ticket with him. In Oyo Central, he got his cousin, Teslim Folarin, who represented the district between 2003 and 2007, imposed on other aspirants.
“Ajimobi told us all to step down for his anointed candidates and unwillingly sign a withdrawal form. The party decided to do indirect primaries but now secretly doing consensus against the feelings of the people who bought forms with their hard earned cash,” an obviously demoralized aspirant said.
The story is not different in other federal and state constituencies. There is no where primaries took place in the state. In places where it was staged, it was marred by irregularities. In all the federal and state constituencies, candidates were imposed.
“It will definitely affect the chance of the party if it is not addressed. I don’t think the centre can hold again in this our party,” another party member said.