There is no end in sight to rift between members of the All Progressives Congress (APC) backing Governor Kayode Fayemi and loyalists of the party’s national leader, Bola Tinubu in Ekiti State, Premium Times report.
Although the duo are yet to declare their ambition of contesting the party’s presidential ticket, analysts say they have begun to position themselves should the party zone the ticket to the south.
The battle took a different dimension on Monday when a member of the party and Chairman of Ado Ward 8, Clement Afolabi, was suspended for having links with the South West Agenda (SWAGA), a group campaigning for the candidature of the party’s national leader, an act that was described as an “anti-party activity.”
According to a letter by the party at the Ado Ekiti Local Government Area, on Monday, which was signed by its Chairman and Secretary Michael Akinleye and Temitope Oluwasola, the Ward 8 Chairman was removed for misconduct and refusal to defend himself against the allegations made against him at the investigative panel sitting.
‘Suspension is unacceptable’
But the Chairman of SWAGA, Dayo Adeyeye, a former senator, while reacting to the suspension of the ward chairman, called on the National Caretaker Committee Chairman of the All Progressives Congress Governor Mai Mala Buni to look into the matter which, he said, is threatening the party in the state.
He urged the party’s national secretariat to place Mr Fayemi on the “watch list” of suspected disloyal members.
Buhari Kicks Against Suspension
Also the Special Adviser to President Muhammadu Buhari on Political Matters, Babafemi Ojudu, also made an intervention, vowing to support Mr Afolabi in upturning his suspension.
He described the removal as unacceptable, the idea of illegal suspensions of members over their fraternity with a group within the APC.
Mr Ojudu explained that the ward chairman had not committed any infraction by identifying with a member of the party ahead of the 2023 general elections, describing the action by the party as an act of dictatorship in a democracy.
‘Fayemi not involved’
Reacting to the development, the APC Director of Media and Senior Special Assistant to the Governor on Party Matters, Sam Oluwalana, denied that Mr Fayemi had anything to do with the removal of Mr Afolabi as ward chairman.
Mr Oluwalana said the suspension slammed on Mr Afolabi was undertaken at the ward level, which had the power to try any erring member, adding that Mr Fayemi and the APC at the state level never interfered in the crisis.