Barely three months to the governorship election in Ekiti State, the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) yesterday suffered a huge setback, with the defection of four associates of former Governor Ayodele Fayose to the Social Democratic Party (SDP).
The defectors are the former Attorney-Generals and Commissioner for Justice, Mr. Owoseni Ajayi and Obafemi Adewale (SAN); ex-Chief of Staff Dipo Anisulowo and former Commissioner for Works Mr. Kayode Oso.
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The defectors said they dumped PDP to team up and support ex-Governor Segun Oni in his quest to succeed Governor Kayode Fayemi.
Speaking about the development, a political pressure group, Ekiti Build Back Better, described the gale of defections hitting the PDP and the All Progressives Congress in Ekiti State as the confirmation of Oni’s popularity ahead of the June 18 poll.
It said while Fayose’s close associates had joined Oni, the PDP had become so emasculated and emptied to the point that it was nearing extinction on account of the ex-governor’s popularity.
In a statement in Ado-Ekiti yesterday, the group spokesman, Mr. Idowu Adelusi, said Oni had become a movement in Ekiti politics that people were struggling to associate with, boasting that APC and PDP would lose in the June 18 election.
The body said many of those parading themselves as backers of the governorship candidates of APC and PDP, Messrs. Biodun Oyebanji and Olabisi Kolawole, were rooting for Oni and that this would reflect in the outcome of the poll.
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Adelusi said Fayose’s associates, who were joining the SDP, were not doing so out of desperation for positions and relevance, but for the fact that the entire Ekiti people were already disillusioned with deception by APC and PDP.
“APC and PDP are gradually being emptied on a daily basis with the way their bigwigs are coalescing with Segun Oni’s SDP in droves. Oni is now like a magnetic force attracting every politician in Ekiti,” he added.