Rep. Opeyemi Bamidele might have stepped on big toes with his declaration, contrary to the wish of his party, Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) leadership, to vie for the governorship position of Ekiti State as members of the State Caucus in the House of Representatives Tuesday announced his suspension as their leader.
Bamidele was the leader of the caucus and Chairs the House Committee on Legislative Budget.
Bamidele, according to a statement signed by the five lawmakers including Robison Ajiboye, Bamidele Faparusi, Bimbo Daramola, Dr. Ifeoluwa Arowosoge, and Oyetunde Ojo, has the constitutional rights to vie for any position in the country, “but he cannot ventilate that against the philosophy of our party.”
Addressing a press briefing, the new leader, Robinson Ajiboye, who was in company of his National Assembly colleagues yesterday, said the caucus in the House “affirm the inalienable right of Hon Michael Opeyemi Bamidele to his ambition and to freely exercise same, but where we differ is if such ambition runs contrary to the philosophy and the will of Ekiti people who offered us the platform and mandate, not primarily because of who we are but our demonstrated commitment to a collective aspiration to serve the good people of Ekiti as members of the House of Representatives, Our Party the ACN soon to be APC can ill afford the consequences of taking on this step on a shaky ground.
“The 2014 election will consolidate the tangible results of the collective rescue mission that brought us into power under the resoundingly endorsed leadership and administration of His Excellency Dr. John Kayode Fayemi.
“We wish to inform the false prophets, the backers, handlers, of this personal enterprise and venture of Hon Michael Opeyemi Bamidele, those who have the mandate to fund this journey to perfidy on the road of infamy that every step of the way, Ekiti’s are resoundingly united behind the decision to have Dr John Kayode Fayemi in office till 2018,” he said.
Speaking further, Ajiboye said: “Our Party is stronger than ever before, and the history of Ekiti is replete with examples of those who tried to arm twist the people politically, we urge the backers of this ill fated enterprise to avail themselves with our history as a people; such history of erstwhile prominent political persons who embarked on perfidy trip against the people and the attendant consequences.
“The integrity of his leadership of the Ekiti State House of Representatives caucus and by extension Chairmanship of the House Committee on Legislative Budget being result of his assumed commitment to the collective philosophy of better life for the people of Ekiti that he represents and the bigger picture and vision as being pursued relentlessly by His Excellency Gov. Kayode Fayemi has been totally compromised irretrievably.
“It naturally follows that since he does not feel too comfortable with the party the most honorable thing to do is for resign this lofty position as Leader of the caucus, since we cannot be a caucus any more if the presumed leader of the caucus has a different inclination and persuasion that runs contrary to the other five members of the caucus. As democrats, one of the trite principles of the democracy is that dissent of opinion is allowed, but majority will always carry the day, in this case, Hon. Micheal Opeyemi Bamidele is clearly in the minority, of one against five.
“It is in view of these reasons that we the members of the Ekiti State caucus of the House of Representatives feel obligated to inform the general public that Hon Michael Opeyemi Bamidele is removed as the leader of the caucus and also to convey this resolution to the leadership of the House thatnthe Chairmanship slot immediately is transferred to our new leader, Hon Robinson Ajiboye, and the attendant post of Committee Chairman on Legislative Budget,” he added.
According to him, “The gubernatorial election of 2014 is not just another election to Ekiti people; it is not an invitation to a popularity contest, which in any case if it were, the incumbent Governor will win any day on the basis of the tangible pro-real Ekiti people initiatives and sustained developmental works that he has done.”