There was a heavy presence of security in Ado Ekiti on Tuesday as President Muhammadu Buhari attended the grand rally organised for the All Progressives Congress candidate in Saturday’s governorship election, Dr Kayode Fayemi.
The combined security men, including soldiers, policemen, Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps and Federal Road Safety Corps operatives, cordoned off many roads, forcing commuters to take alternative routes.
The situation caused gridlock in the capital city.
At the rally were the APC National Chairman, Adams Oshiomhole; National Leader, Senator Bola Tinubu; a former Osun State governor, Chief Bisi Akande; 11 governors, a deputy governor and ministers among other leaders of the party.
The senator representing Ekiti Central District, Mrs Fatimat Raji-Rasaki, formally announced her defection from the Peoples Democratic Party to the APC.
Also, the lawmaker representing Ekiti Central Federal Constituency II (Ekiti West/Ijero/Efon Federal Constituency), Mr Olamide Oni; the suspended member representing Ikere Constituency II in the State House of Assembly, Sunday Akinniyi; his colleague from Ise/Orun constituency, Ebenezer Alagbada; and a former Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, Mr Owoseni Ajayi, were formally received into the APC from the Peoples Democratic Party by Oshiomhole.
Buhari urged the Ekiti electorate to cast their votes for Fayemi in order to reclaim the state and restore its values.
The President said, “I decided to make research of what the Federal Government has been doing in Ekiti for the last three years. In all my years in the military, I have found the people of Ekiti to be intelligent, resourceful. I am not here to campaign alone, Ekiti people are politically aware and can’t be deceived.
“We have constructed or rehabilitated 13 federal roads at the cost of N766m. The APC-led Federal Government has awarded the Federal Secretariat complex. The APC is also constructing the National Housing in Ekiti State. Ekiti has had its share of federal appointments.
“Despite that we are not from the same political party, Ekiti has benefited from the social investment such as N-Power Microcredit Finance Scheme. We ensure that you get your own share. We will never play politics with the lives of people.”
Buhari charged the people of the state to reject Governor Ayodele Fayose’s stomach infrastructure.
“Many people have been blackmailing that I have not taken appropriate actions to address the issue of Fulani herdsmen because I am Fulani; that is cheap blackmail. We are taking steps to address the issue.
“Don’t allow yourselves to be deceived with stomach infrastructure; vote for APC. It is time to correct past historical injustice. Don’t waste your vote, vote for Dr Kayode Fayemi,” he said.
On his part, Oshiomole chided Fayose for directing that Ekiti economy should be shut down for partisan politics.
He said the governor manipulated the road transport workers to withdraw their service from the road so that people would not be able to witness the rally.
Tinubu described the PDP as a party of destruction.
He charged the people to support the APC, saying it was not easy to rebuild and that it took time to rebuild.
Urging the people to vote for him, Fayemi said no fewer than 15 candidates of other political parties had pledged their support to the APC for the election because of their belief in him.
He said the election would be “free, fair, credible, authentic and genuine,” adding that he was running on his track record of performance in his first term in office.
“I’m running on my track record. There is no single community in Ekiti that was not touched by our government. If we didn’t build your palace, we repaired your roads, if we didn’t reconstruct your schools, we built your culverts,” he added.