EKITI State Governor Kayode Fayemi has denied ever asking the former chairman of the All Progressive Congress (APC) Adams Oshiomhole to commit electoral fraud in his favour.
Oshiomhole had while recounting his days as APC chairman during an interview on Channels Television on Monday, alleged that Fayemi wanted him to manipulate party primaries in favour of certain candidates.
The former APC national chairman said Fayemi made the request at a meeting he held with the governor.
“I said it in one of the meetings I had with Governor Kayode Fayemi who told me bluntly to my face that, ‘Chairman, what we are saying is, you can go and conduct election to fulfil all righteousness, but when we say; this is the person that should emerge, just make sure he is the person that emerges.’
“And I told Governor Fayemi, ‘That would be your own portion; not me’. I cannot be used as an instrument of fraud, to invite people to buy forms when I have already decided, regardless of how people will vote; this is the man that will prevail.
“You want to use me for such a purpose, I said no, I said at worst, if you find the number to get rid of me, I will rather leave the job with my honour than sacrifice my honour to keep the job,” Oshiomhole said.
However, Fayemi, speaking through a statement by his Chief Press Secretary Yinka Oyebode, described the allegation as false, puerile and laughable.
In the statement, Fayemi noted that although he had fundamental differences with Oshiomhole, he never had any reason to ask him to rig elections for him or anyone.
The statement urged the public to disregard Oshiomhole’s allegation.
“The Ekiti State Governor has always considered Comrade Oshiomhole a friend and political associate even if they had fundamental differences over his kangaroo approach of disqualifying Governor Godwin Obaseki of Edo State, from the APC primaries and his unconscionable autocratic management of party affairs whilst he was chairman of the party.
“For avoidance of doubt, Governor Fayemi has no reason to approach Comrade Oshiomhole for favours for any election. Governor Fayemi has a stellar track record of being a consummate democrat even in difficult times.”
Fayemi challenged Oshiomhole to provide the public with independently verifiable evidence of his claims.
Fayemi, who is equally Chairman of the Nigerian Governors Forum, said he remained steadfast in pursuing his aspiration to get the APC ticket for the 2023 presidential election.
He added that no amount of mudslinging from disenchanted individuals would distract or discourage him.