The members of the executive committee of the Ekiti State branch of Accord Party have been suspended for openly declaring support for the Peoples Democratic Party candidate, Kolapo Olusola.
The national working committee of the party also dissolved the state executive committee led by Abiola Adeoba, accusing the officials of anti-party activities.
A leader of the party, Akogun Ojo, was also axed for allegedly abandoning the party’s governorship candidate for the candidate of the PDP.
Messrs Odeoba and Ojo were alleged to have led the state executive to the PDP mega rally on Thursday in a show of support for Mr Olusola.
The dissolution followed an endorsement of the Accord Party candidate, Abiodun Aluko, by former Kaduna State governor, Balarabe Musa, and a coalition of 14 political parties under the aegis of Credible Alternative Alliance (CAA).
The party has communicated its disciplinary action to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) through a letter addressed to the Chairman of the commission, Mahmood Yakubu, on July 6.
In the letter, signed by its National Chairman, Muhammad Nalado, and Secretary, Adebukola Abiola-Ajaja, the party said it had set up a seven-member interim committee, led by S.O. Ogunniyi, to pilot affairs of the party in the state.
While addressing journalists in Ado Ekiti on Sunday, Messrs Nalado, Ajaja and the Vice Chairman South West of the party, Samuel Babarinde, all denied ever entering into any merger agreement with the PDP for the election.
“Surveyor Aluko remains our candidate having met all the criteria. Those who thought they could trade with our ticket will be disappointed in the end,” Mr Nalado said.
“The action displayed by these politicians was unethical. It surprised us that they could turn our ticket into a business venture just to make money.
“Surveyor Aluko collected nomination form, he paid N3 million and he has been spending to galvanise supports for the party, so at no time did we abandon him, he remains our candidate and nothing has changed.
“Time has come for Ekiti people to embrace Accord, because Dr. Kayode Fayemi and the present governor, Ayodele Fayose have disappointed the people. They must embrace change and when I say change , I am not referring to the kind of bad change APC brought to our people.”
Mr Ajaja on his part, said the disciplinary measures did not translate to an outright expulsion, as they could be accepted if the erring party officials retraced their steps and show remorse.
Mr Aluko said he had at no time take any decision to back the PDP candidate.
“The open support for PDP was taken by Chief Odeoba and Banji Ojo and this amounted to anti-party activity. So, the punitive action was well deserved and was taken to save our party,” he said.
The suspended leaders had addressed the press stating that they were no longer recognising Mr Aluko as the candidate of the party as he had not conducted campaigns, and was not showing regard to the state executive committee.