The Governor of Ekiti State, Mr. Ayodele Fayose, yesterday insisted that he has not withdrawn from the 2019 presidential race in spite of the fact that the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) had zoned the ticket to the North.
Fayose said he decided to soft-pedal on his campaign because of the July 14, 2018 Ekiti governorship poll, saying the campaign will begin to gain traction after the state election.
The governor added that he would repeat a resounding victory against Dr Kayode Fayemi if he is picked as the candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), saying he is not threatened by his rumoured ambition.
On the agitations of some PDP aggrieved aspirants that Fayose should be prevented from interfering with the primary, the governor assured that the state has no role to play in the shadow election, saying it remains the prerogative of the Chief Uche Secondus-led National Working Committee.
Some aggrieved PDP aspirants like; former Minister of Works, Prince Dayo Adeyeye, Senator Biodun Olujimi, Amb Dare Bejide, Owoseeni Ajayi, had at a joint press conference on Monday advised Secondus to checkmate Fayose and ensure that credible primary is conducted in Ekiti.
Speaking during an interactive session with teachers in public primary and secondary schools at the government house in Ado Ekiti, Fayose said: “I am still in the presidential race I am only waiting for the time Ekiti governorship election will hold so I can have the time. Though, I am making contacts, I am reaching out to the people that matter across the country”.
On the primary election in Ekiti, Fayose said: “I have no role to play, only the NWC will present the delegate lists for them to elect the candidate, so I won’t interfere despite my support for Prof Kolapo Olusola.
“I have no regret supporting Olusola , if it were those people I had supported, they won’t be abusing me. But they remain our brothers and sister and we are going to put our house in order at the right time so that we can be on the same page”, Fayose added.
Addressing the teachers, Fayose appealed to them to support Olusola the way they did to him in June 21, 2014 governorship election, where he defeated Dr Kayode Fayemi.
He promised not to owe the teachers a dime at the expiration of his tenure on October 15, 2018, saying 1000 teachers will begin to benefit certain financial benefits from him commencing from the end of this month to give them a sense of belonging in his government..
“Don’t vote for those that will come here and sack you. When they sacked your colleagues in Kaduna State, an APC leader in Ekiti said it was a right step in the right direction and I believe such person is not good for Ekiti teachers.
“Prof Olusola is a man of integrity, very hardworking and dependable, he won’t betray you. He will protect your interests and I want you to support him”, he said.
Fayose added that all the outstanding salaries, allowances, bonuses and pensions shall be paid before he finally bows out as a governor.