Crisis brewing in Ekiti State chapter of the All Progressives Congress (APC) as the Segun Oni political group, known as Atunse Ekiti Movement has rejected the overtures of Ekiti APC Elders Forum, which had appealed to him to withdraw his lawsuit against the candidature of Dr Kayode Fayemi in the last governorship election in the state.
The group claimed in a communique made available to newsmen on Tuesday, after its meeting on Sunday, September 2, that it had done the things expected of him, and that Oni was not the one to be appealed to.
In the communique, signed by Dr Ife Arowosoge on behalf of the Atunse Ekiti Movement, the group said: “Is it Chief Segun Oni who has always made himself available and ready to cooperate that should be begged or Dr John Kayode Fayemi? Who doesn’t know that justice and peace go hand in hand and side by side?”
The Ekiti APC Elders Forum had met at Igbara Odo last weekend and stated in their communique, appealed to Chief Oni to withdraw the suit he filed challenging the eligibility of Dr Fayemi to contest the July 14th governorship election and embrace out-of-court settlement.
But the Oni group said “the Atunse Ekiti Movement humbly and with utmost respect appreciate the efforts of our elders in trying to ensure that peace reigns in our party, APC.
“The meeting reminded itself of the effort of the committee of the Elders Forum requesting to meet with our leader, Chief Segun Oni (CSO) shortly before the general election of 14 July which he, CSO, promptly granted and the committee had a very useful discussion with him
“Members recalled that in the said Elders meeting, CSO promised full cooperation with the party and that all hands should be on deck to ensure that APC won the gubernatorial election against the PDP.
“He kept his promise to the letter by mobilizing his supporters and assisting them financially to work for the party. Thank God we won the election which makes our party have now crossed the danger line.
“The meeting also recalled that CSO suggested that the elders should endeavour to reach out to other leaders of the Atunse Ekiti Movement which the elders did through invitation of some members of Atunse Ekiti leadership to the Igbara-Odo meeting of Tuesday, 31st July 2018 which afforded the elders to listen and understand the complaints of the Segun Oni group, leading to the matter in court.
“The Elders were told that representatives of Atunse Ekiti Movement had earlier met with the Deputy National Chairman, Otunba Niyi Adebayo and other Southwest members of the National Working Committee on the same issue and that Otunba Adeniyi promised to facilitate a meeting between our group and Dr. Fayemi.
“The question begging for an answer now is why has the meeting promised by Otunba not taken place up till today after over two months of that promise?
“The group was surprised that despite the intervention of Otunba Adebayo and that of the elders to ensure amicable settlement, Dr. Fayemi has hitherto maintained complete silence on the matter. What then does anybody expect us to do?”
The group also said it is in support of the direct primary for the selection of the party’s candidates for the coming general election, saying it will resist any attempt by anybody to rig the primary or compile the list of would-be national and state Assembly members in 2019.
It said, “only a credible and the acceptable direct primary will be adopted to elect the candidates where consensus failed.”