BY GBENGA ARIYIBI
ADO EKITI – THE immediate past governor of Ekiti State, Mr. Segun Oni, an engineer by profession and former Vice Chairman of the Peoples’ Democratic Party, PDP, in the South West, yesterday dumped the party, and defected to All Progressive Congress, APC, thereby supporting Governor Kayode Fayemi ahead of the June 21 governorship election.
Oni, while speaking in Ifaki Ekiti when Fayemi paid him a courtesy visit during a campaign in the council area, said he decided to resolve his long time feud with Fayemi, having considered him the best option for Ekiti at this point in time.
Fayemi took over from Oni after a three and half years of legal tussle with Oni over the gubernatorial election of 2007, culminating in his removal from office on October 15, 2010.
Some of the Oni’s loyalists, who witnessed the parley and coming together are: former Commissioner for Information, Taiwo Olatunbosun, ex-Commissioner for Local Government Affairs, Abiodun Bamiteko, former Commissioner for Lands, Mr. Kayode Babade, a serving member of House of Assembly, Hon. Bunmi Oriniowo, former Majority leader, Hon Lai Oke, ex-Special Adviser on Strategy, Mr. Ben Oguntuase among others.
Flanked by his supporters, Oni said “Today, we are erecting a new platform to build the future for Ekiti. To us, the future is paramount in our hearts and what our children would say about us. Though, we might have a past that was rough, but we have to let the past be past.
We must think of who can take the right decisions for us to build a prosperous future for Ekiti. I am not talking of perfection here, but something that is better and who can give us a better future. Ekiti must ask themselves what type of legacy they want to bequeath to the generations yet unborn. We have to think of how we can make our tomorrow better than our past and today.”
Oni expressed fear that Ekiti could be plunged into trouble should it make the mistake of choice in the forthcoming election, urging the people to queue behind Governor Fayemi.
Fayemi who could not hide his feelings, described Oni’s decision to join APC as a lesson to the country that leadership was about the people and should not be seen from a narrow perspective.
He said “My brother has demonstrated that he is a true leader, because the step he has taken is the least materially benefiting one. He may choose to stay put and make demands because the PDP is stillthe ruling party at the centre. But he decided to follow his conscience, his conviction and demonstrated courage for the common good of Ekiti people.”