President Muhammadu Buhari yesterday urged voters not to be deceived by what he described as crumbs being served by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) as stomach infrastructure but embrace the governorship candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Dr. Kayode Fayemi Saturday’s election.
Buhari also dismissed allegations from some quarters that he is protecting killer herdsmen because he
is Fulani, saying he has not relented in his effort to provide security for every Nigeria, regardless of ethnicity and religion.
The leader of the APC, Bola Tinubu and the national chairman of the party, Adams Oshimhole, urged voters to vote Fayemi to bail the state out of poverty.
Buhari, while speaking at the mega rally organised to drum support for Fayemi ahead of Saturday’s election said he approved 13 federal road intervention projects in Ekiti State since assumption of office, contrary to speculations that he abandoned the state.
The President stated that in spite of the fact that Ekiti belongs to the PDP, his government has not denied the state any federal benefits since he assumed office.
He added that his government has been working painstakingly to stop killer herdsmen and that nothing will be spared to achieve the task of uniting Nigeria.
His words: “I want you to align Ekiti with the change agenda of our government. Since I came on board, I have initiated 13 federal road projects in Ekiti. We have completed the failed portions of the
Ifaki-Ikole –Omuo road, Ifaki-Ido road, Efon-Iwaraja road, while Ado-Ifaki road has been re-awarded.
“The APC government had also awarded the construction of a federal secretariat in Ekiti State. We have also extended the National Housing Scheme to Ekiti for the state not to be neglected in the scheme of things. Under my government, Ekiti has enjoyed unprecedented federal appointments while people have also benefited from N-Power and intervention funds like bailouts funds despite belonging to opposition. Some are displaying mischievous attitude by linking me to killer herdsmen just because I am a Fulani man. This is a cheap blackmail that was far from the truth.
“So, don’t allow yourselves to be insulted by stomach infrastructure, vote APC on Saturday so that you can grow your own better infrastructures. Ekiti people must do the right thing by voting rightly so that you can reclaim your land and restore you values. As minister, Fayemi recorded a lot of laudable achievements, so don’t waste your votes. Vote for Fayemi,” Buhari said.
Also speaking, Tinubu said the looting of the treasury brought about the recession that hit the economy under Buhari. He urged voters not to be intimidated by the PDP, saying they should come out on the day of election and vote for APC.
Tinubu said: “A vote for Fayemi is a vote for development and the future of Ekiti. He served as a minister and President didn’t remove him. He was not sacked, but he only came to Ekiti to help you.
“On Saturday, you are protected. Don’t be intimidated by anybody, this is not like 2014. This time, it is going to be one man, one vote, because Governor Fayose has been making noise that the election has been rigged. APC is a decent party, it won’t rig election they way they did”.
The national chairman of the party, Oshiomhole accused Fayose o embezzling the N20 billion bailout funds given to the state by President Buhari to pay workers. He said Fayemi did excellently well as a governor of Ekiti by bringing finesse to governance, saying time has come for him to reap the fruits of his labour.
The former Edo State governor urged voters to appropriate their votes wisely and get rid of an irresponsible government.
“Fayemi has promised that he will pay the arrears of salaries if elected. He won’t sack anybody, because he is different from Fayose who got N20 billion bailout and pocketed it, rather than paying salaries.
“Fayose, today has offended everybody, He has abused everybody. He even gave unlawful orders that shops should be closed down today just to show his hatred for President Buhari. He even manipulated the leaders of commercial drivers not to go to work today just to create obstacles. But I want to commend you for defying all these obstacles. Let me also say that any worker or Vice Chancellor or Provost that was victimised by Fayose will be promoted by Fayemi”, Oshiomohole assured.
He said the PDP has entered into merger deal with other ‘mushroom’ parties to unseat Buhari, saying their gang up against the present government will amount to nullity, describing APC as a performing and solid party.
Speaking on behalf of the Ministers, Chris Ngige said the anti-people policies initiated by Fayose leading to non-payment of salaries have affected Igbo traders adversely. He urged Igbo traders in the state to put their destinies in their own hands by rejecting PDP in the poll.
Fayemi, in his brief comment said candidates of 15 political parties have endorsed him for the Saturday’s contest based on his track records.
“Saturday’s election will be credible, it will be fair and transparent. Nobody will rig because we are contesting based on our track records, which the people said were excellent. My concerned in this election is to chase away looters and those pauperising our people President Buhari has instructed me to go back and bring transformation to Ekiti and the task shall be achieved,” Fayemi said.
The Senator representing Ekiti Central, Mrs Fatima Raji Rasaki, a serving member of the House of Representatives, Olamide Oni and other PDP bigwigs also joined the ruling APC.
Meanwhile, members of the National Union of Road Workers (NURTW), Road Transport Employers Association if Nigeria (RTEAN), Okada riders and many artisans and supporters of PDP camped with their vehicles and motorbikes inside the governor’s office to hold a separate rally where they expressed their readiness to vote for PDP candidate Olusola Kolapo, alleging that Fayemi has nothing good to offer Ekiti.
The PDP supporters sounded angry as they decried the occupation of all the gates leading to the governor’s office by stern looking armed security agents. They said it amounts to a denial of their sovereignty.
Dignitaries who attended the mega rally which held at the Oluyemi Kayode stadium, included Governor Rotimi Akeredolu (Ondo), Rauf Aregbesola (Osun), Bindow Jibrilla(Adamawa), Kashim Shetima (Borno), Senator Abiola Ajimobi (Oyo), Abubakar Badaru (Jigawa), Edo Deputy Governor,Philip Shuaib, Ibikunle Amosun (Ogun), Abdulaziz Yari(Zamfara), Yahaya Bello(Kogi), Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Boss Mustapha, Minister of Labour, Chief Chris Ngige, Works and Housing, Babatunde Raji Fashola, Senior Special Assistant on Foreign Affairs,
Abike Dabiri, former Governors Niyi Adebayo, Segun Osoba, Segun Oni, Chief Bisi Akande, among others.