A group within the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Ekiti State, the South West Agenda for Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tiinubu 2023 presidential ambition (SWAGA), has vehemently opposed the consensus arrangements being proposed by the National Caretaker Committee of the party in the state.
In a statement signed by the Ekiti State Chairman of SWAGA, Senator Tony Adeniyi, yesterday, the group said the consensus won't work on the strength that the state Governor, Dr. Kayode Fayemi, and his caucus have allegedly handpicked the delegates for the congresses without the inputs of other party stakeholders.
Adeniyi stressed that the APC in the state got its body fractured with the taking over of the party affair by a group within the state chapter under the name 'Tokan-Tokan, populated by loyalists of Fayemi.
He noted that the splinter group had allegedly dominated state affairs and had held down other party members by retaining its grip on their jugular.
Adeniyi, who commended the resolution of the national caretaker committee to ensure a swerve in the constituted state Congresses Electoral Committees, advised that there should be a level playing ground for party members to carry out their aspirations without fear or favour.
"We hereby state categorically that the APC in Ekiti State is fully prepared to go for direct congresses immediately after the registration/revalidation exercise. We are not, and shall not be part of any unilateral 'consensus' arrangement whatsoever.
"The beauty of democracy is by allowing everyone to have their say, even when the majority would have their way. The only civilized way to prove our numerical values is through congresses, not by any proxy," Adeniyi said.
He added: "We should also be mindful of the fact that this sidelining of party members with its implosive tendencies have continued unabated, causing many prospective members to be shut out and the existing family members deliberately blackened out of party activities. This necessitated a formal complaint lodged by the Integrity Group to the national leadership of the party in 2018."
Meanwhile, dispelling the diatribes by Adeniyi against the party, the APC state Publicity Secretary, Hon. Ade Ajayi, submitted that the aspersion cast on APC and its leadership confirmed that the so-called SWAGA members were outsiders in the party.
Ajayi clarified that the fair composition of the congress committee and directive issued to the party to conduct free and credible congresses at its recent stakeholders' meeting substantiated the fact that the party had been fair and just to all tendencies.
The state APC spokesman also condemned Adeniyi's attempt to drag Governor Fayemi into the fray by accusing him of undue interferences, adding that the leadership has not been under any pressure to subvert the will of the people as being painted.