Adeleke’selectioncredible, conclusive – Jenyo, PDP’sex-zonalboss

Against all odds, the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the recently held Osun governorship election, Senator Nurudeen Ademola Adeleke defeated the incumbent Gboyega Oyetola of the All progressives Congress (APC). In this interview with OLAOLU OLADIPO, a former Secretary of the party in the South West zone, Pastor Olubunmi Jenyo, says the victory of the Ede-born politician is comprehensive and credible. He dismisses the decision of the Oyetola to challenge the outcome at the tribunal as an exercise in futility, saying the PDP is not in any way intimidated. Excerpts…

Congratulations on the emergence of Senator Ademola Adeleke as Governor-elect of Osun State…

Thank you.

What do you think was responsible for his recent victory at the poll?

I think he won due largely to his mass appeal and popularity. I also think that the sincerity of the Independent National Electoral Commission too helped in no small way too. The security agencies performed as expected. Like I said, INEC played by the rules and the votes counted to reflect the popularity and acceptance of the PDP candidate by the people of the state.

How do you react to suggestions that some elements within the ruling All Progressives Congress played a very huge role in the victory?

It’s difficult to say that because these are citizens of the state who seek the best for their state. Whenever one is voting, you vote as a citizen and a stakeholder in the state and not by or based on being a member of any given political party. You have to vote for your own preferred candidate who you believe will move the state forward. When you say if not because of the APC, I won’t join you in saying that. All I can say is that our candidate is very popular and the people of the state supported him regardless of party affiliations or other considerations.

From reports coming out of Osun State, Governor Isiaka Oyetola has promised to challenge the outcome of the election at the tribunal. He has even reportedly enlisted the services of over 50 lawyers…

If he eventually does that, to me, he will be exercising his fundamental human rights as a citizen of the country. Don’t forget that the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria guarantees him the opportunity to exercise such rights. To us, our attitude is that whatever issue relating to the election that he wishes to challenge would be dealt with at the court or the tribunal. Like I said earlier, I can tell you that the election was free, fair, credible and conclusive. This fact is well attested to by local and foreign observers who monitored the election.

The new Electoral Act does not permit gladiators to commit any fraudulent acts during the poll. It was a thorough exercise which is foul proof in many respects. Taking 50 lawyers to the tribunal does not in any way intimidate us in the PDP because we have done what is right before God and the law. It was a well deserved victory. It (the victory) reflects the will and wishes of the people of Osun State who showed their preference for Senator Ademola Adeleke.

You are very close to the governor-elect and that should give you the opportunity to know the plans he has for the state when he is eventually sworn in…

The governor-elect has a five-point agenda with which he hopes to move the state forward. He mentioned items in this agenda repeatedly during his electioneering campaigns to the nooks and crannies of the state. He plans to revive the dwindling educational sector and reposition it in a manner that will be an envy for all.

He talked about returning the people back to agriculture via numerous well mapped out empowerment schemes, especially for the teeming youths in the state. He also talked about returning and giving back the local government to the people. He pledged and will help the local governments regain their autonomy in the way it should be.

In the last 12 years, there was nothing like local governments as if they never existed. We have had administrators who were appointed and not elected by the people of the state. We have not had a local government election in the last 12 years and I can assure you that we are bringing it back. The governor-elect has promised the people that he would ensure democratic governance at the grassroots. There are three tiers of government which are Federal, state and local government. One of them, I mean the local government, has been eradicated. He (Adeleke) has promised to make provision of world class infrastructure a major priority.

It is a common knowledge that the state is debt ridden, how do you think the governor- elect will muster the right finances to be able to do all these things?

Obviously, the governor will have his economic and financial teams that will work these things out. He is going to scout for the best brains from the state to help him out. He is not going to do it all alone. He is coming with experts and by the grace of God, he is going to solve all the financial problems that have been created by the outgoing government and the one before it. I am confident that workable solutions would be worked out.

Has the governor-elect put the team together? No!

He hasn’t assumed office yet to be able to do that. It can only be done when he assumes office as the governor. I’m sure no governor-elect will be able to do that. What I know is that the team will come into place immediately when he assumes office on November 27 this year.

What are your expectations from the government that is expected to be formed in November?

I am expecting a government that would not only listen to the yearnings of the people of the state, I am also expecting that the new government to be formed by Senator Ademola Adeleke would in the end meeting these expectations and ultimately make life more meaningful to the people of the state who wish and pray for a better life.




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