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Ekiti Governorship poll: Buhari, EFCC go after Fayose

The Presidency and the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) yesterday descended on Governor Ayodele Fayose of Ekiti. While the Presidency described the Ekiti State governor as a street-type thug, the anti-graft agency vowed to prosecute Fayose after the expiration of his tenure over alleged N1.3 billion fraud.

 

The Presidency declared that Fayose has been humiliated by the verdict of the Saturday’s governorship election in which the All Progressives Congress (APC) candidate, Dr. Kayode Fayemi, defeated the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and its candidate, Prof. Olusola Kolapo Eleka. Fayemi, former Minister of Mines and Steel Development, polled 197,459 votes to defeat the state’s deputy governor, Eleka, who polled 178,121 votes in the hotly contested poll. Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu, in a statement titled, “Fayose:

In The End, A High-Powered Nothing” and made available to journalists in Abuja, said the politics of brinksmanship, assaults, insults, abuses and stomach infrastructure which Fayose is noted for, has come to an end. Shehu stated that the defeat of Fayose’s candidate at the poll shows the fall of the governor. “An old proverb says you can’t beat something with nothing. After all the noise, theatricals and drama, Fayose’s fall came with a thud, not a bang: a high-powered nothing,” he stressed.

 

The Presidency stated that the political career of the governor faces extinction. He said: “As for Mr. Fayose and his morbid brand of politics, it is now his time to reconcile himself to the imminent political extinction he faces, his political career sealed for good. Newspapers have mistaken him for a gadfly who creates discomfort for the government at the centre to make it better, but Fayose is a street-type thug. “He never fits the role of a gadfly because he thrives on bitter enmity. Opposition does not mean a negative view of everything. Neither does it translate into a licence to abuse your superiors.”

 

The presidential spokesman explained that the people of the state, with the result of the Saturday’s election, have spoken against Fayose who he said told them that the governorship election was a referendum on President Muhammadu Buhari. According to him, Fayose told the Ekiti people that Fayemi and Olusola Eleka of the Peoples Democractic Party (PDP) were pawns and that he and Buhari were the actual contestants.

 

He said: “In what observers said was the most intense, and a most angry campaign, the people gave their verdict: Dr. Kayode Fayemi, the one-time governor, declared persona-nongrata, is now persona-grata again.

 

“President Buhari has won this referendum. The people of the state have sent a clear message. The politics of brinksmanship, assaults, insults, abuses and Robin Hoodism disguised as stomach infrastructure has been rejected in favour of politics of inclusion, development, responsibility and good governance. “President Buhari’s war against corruption and insecurity; the message of agric revolution and infrastructure development and fidelity in resource allocation and management have struck a chord with Ekiti voters, who had been lied to and deceived by Governor Fayose.”

 

While the opposition continued to rant at him, President Buhari’s uprightness, coupled with incorruptibility and personal integrity, unmatched by any politician in the country, has again stood the test of time.

 

“The APC’s win in Ekiti means that the party has control over 25 out of the 36 states of the federation. The party thus becomes the only one in power in the six states of the South-West geopolitical zone.

 

“Besides reinforcing the APC’s position as the only standing pole in the political landscape, it is a credit to the national leader of the party, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, against whom all manner of ethnic and religious opposition is being mounted by former President Obasanjo and some of the Asiwaju’s sworn enemies in the sub-region.”

 

The Presidency noted that with the result, the political landscape of the South-West has been transformed. He said APC’s regional strength has been strengthened and Tinubu would be respected better.

 

The presidential aide said without losing patience and decorum, Tinubu has proved that rivals must reconcile and come to terms or lose everything. He added that: “This win is equally a huge boost to the APC and its new leadership under Chairman Adams Oshiomole, who got their first baptism of fire in Ekiti. It is importantly a big boost to the second term ambition of President Buhari. “For the PDP which came second in the election in a state that they held sway, it is a loss politically and psychologically. “The result of the election has proved that PDP is irreparably broken and dismantled.

 

They have nothing to offer to the country and its people. The message from Ekiti is that no state in Nigeria will vote PDP. Never again. “The winner of the election, Governor Fayemi’s trajectory from a personanon- grata to a persona-grata, again, has given a wave of cheer to APC members all over the country. It has given a fresh hope that fake news, lies and propaganda run only short distances, because they have short legs.” Meanwhile, the EFCC has hinted of plans to arrest Fayose at the expiration of his tenure in October over alleged N1.3 billion fraud.

 

It will be recalled that members of the Ekiti State House of Assembly had, in 2006, impeached Fayose over allegations that he had used a firm, Integrated Poultry Project/Biological Concepts Limited, to perpetrate fraud to the tune of N1.3 billion.

 

The development had necessitated the governor’s arrest and subsequent arraignment on alleged money laundering and misappropriation of funds. While the criminal trial lasted, Fayose contested and won election in 2014, thus assuming immunity from prosecution.

 

But, the EFCC yesterday, asked Fayose to prepare for continuation of his trial, in a post on its Twitter handle. Though, the outgoing Ekiti governor’s name was not mentioned, reference was made to the alleged poultry fraud, and the fact that the cover of immunity will soon be removed.

 

“The parri (party) is over, the cloak of immunity torn apart and the staff broken. “Ekiti Integrated Poultry Project/Biological concepts Limited N1.3 billion fraud case file dusted off the shelves. See you soon,” EFCC tweeted. EFCC’s Head of Media and Publicity, Mr. Wilson Uwujaren, told New Telegraph that the prosecution of Fayose will resume after his tenure.

 

“There is a subsisting criminal charge before the Federal High Court, Ado Ekiti, which was put on hold in 2014 upon Fayose’s election as governor. Governors under the constitution enjoy immunity from criminal prosecution. At the expiration of his tenure, he would no longer have such immunity and the case can resume,” Uwujaren said last night. The anti-graft agency’s threat came hours after the conclusion of the Ekiti governorship election, which held last Saturday.

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