Governorship candidate in the July 14 Ekiti election on the platform of the Democratic Peoples’ Party, DPP, Chief Yinka Akerele, has said the lack of internal party democracy and impunity that characterized the Peoples’ Democratic Party, PDP, were currently eating deep into the All Progressives Congress, APC.
He said this while recalling that he was allegedly rigged out to make way for Segun Oni’s emergence as PDP candidate in 2006.
Akerele, who contested for the APC ticket alongside ex-Minister of Mines and Steel Development, Kayode Fayemi, also accused the party of bending its rules in Fayemi’s favour.
He told Vanguard: “I left the PDP in 2006 after Obasanjo rigged me out for Segun Oni and when it became obvious that the then ruling Party was no longer the desired vehicle to drive my ambition to rescue my Ekiti people because it had been hijacked by a fake political prophet.
“It was one of the signs of bad leadership in the PDP and the nation. Unfortunately that is the same sign I saw in the APC and that was why I left also because, when you subvert the wish of the people, you no longer practise democracy.
“If people came out and voted for you in a primary election and adjudged to be free and fair and, without any reason, the president summoned all the contestants to Abuja and took the ticket from you and gave the person that came third, is that democracy? That is corruption in another form and that is injustice. That is what happened in the PDP
“What happened in the APC primary is not different. As a politician, one of the things you owe yourself is not to engage in self-deceit. Tell yourself the truth. And the home truth is that PDP defectors do not appear to be welcomed in the APC.
“Even if you go by what is happening in the APC after the merger of the legacy parties, you will not feel comfortable. If you look at Asiwaju Bola Tinubu’s case, you will know that all is not well in the APC.
“If you want me to go elaborate, corruption has many faces. It is not until you embezzle money that you are corrupt. We have moral corruption. Delegate election is when you make delegates to vote for a preferred candidate.
“The moment the rules are bent and the party ignores the rules, then the exercise has been compromised. We bought the nomination form for N5.5million and paid another N2.5million to make the total money we paid to be N8 million. We went through a screening.
“And at the APC primary, when you spend N250,000 to N350,000 to lure delegates to vote for you, is that not corruption? In a general election, when you gather voters and you start giving them loaves of bread to vote for you, is that not corruption?
“I have been in Ekiti since January since 2016, on the field for almost two years mobilising potential APC delegates, and for someone who came less than a month three weeks to the primary and you want to tell me that individual has a magic wand.
“And I am not a puppet in this game, nobody can convince me it was free and fair exercise. I refused to make noise about it because nobody sent me to APC in the first place. A far as I am concerned, it is a free market where you can go in and can come out.”