Fayose; One Man, Many Battle, Multiple Victories By Sunshine Anifowose
The Ekiti State Governor, Dr. Peter Ayodele Fayose does not need much introduction in the blogosphere. He has been moving from one controversy to another until he climaxed on June 5 this year. Fayose has fought and conquered battles that no living political tactician in the nation of Nigeria has ever stumbled upon and triumph.
After fighting many enemies within his party, the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) from year 2000 to January 2003, Fayose defeated an incumbent governor, ‘Niyi Adebayo in April 2003 to become the second executive governor of Ekiti State.
However, he was removed in 2006 via the conspiracy of those who prided themselves as Ekiti Elites and an Army general in civilian uniform. The then owners of Nigeria ganged up against Fayose, coaxed the commoners and removed him from office at gun point.
In late 2007, Fayose was incarcerated at Ikoyi prison for 33 days. In 2009, he picked up the gauntlet with those who sent him to prison within his party in Ekiti. He engaged his successor, Segun Oni in a fierce battle and did not relent until he triumphed on October 16 2010. Fayose aligned with the immediate past governor of Ekiti, Kayode Fayemi to lawfully dethrone Oni. However, instead of being compensated, Fayose was caged by those he helped enthroned. In 2009, those who reportedly promise to make Fayose a Senator in secret denied in public in 2011.
Undeterred, Fayose went on his own to seek the mandate of his people to represent them in the hallowed chamber of the national assembly but the people he put in power truncated his ambition by monetizing the electoral process. Money, security and instrumentality of power were used to turn the electorates against him.
Fayose went back to drawing board to re-strategise. After months of political hibernation, he returned back to his root, the PDP. He was re-registered. The enemies within his party fought against his return. He triumphed. Fayose’s men took over the PDP structure in Ekiti State via a free and fair election. He was also granted waiver to exercise his fundamental human rights within his party.
In October 2012, Fayose declared his ambition to re-contest for the governorship seat of Ekiti State. Out of 32 Aspirants interested in the governorship seat, 28 waged war against him but to the surprise of all, he was victorious.
Fayose won the primaries of his party on March 27 2014 to run for Governorship election slated for June 21 2014. Fayose was to face an incumbent, Kayode Fayemi. It was like a David going to war to fight a Goliath. The incumbent had the Elites but Fayose had the poorest of the poor. On June 21 2014, the power of the common people battled the power of the Elites. Fayose Triumphed. The Elites lost. Fayose’s foes also moved to prevent him from being sworn in but the move failed. From Afao-Ekiti, his country home, Fayose moved to the government house at Oke Bareke, Ado-Ekiti.
But as soon as Fayose was sworn on October 2014, his detractors reignited the drum of war. They dragged him to the elections petition tribunal, he won. They dragged him to the Appellate Court, he conquered. They dragged him to the Supreme Court, he climaxed. Courts refused to nullify the mandate given to Fayose by the people of Ekiti State.
From the courts, Fayose’s foes proceeded to the fountain of knowledge. The gladiators Fayose defeated on June 21 2014 declared another war against him because he did not tow the pact which some leaders within his party took prior to President Buhari’s victory on 28th March 2015. Fayose refused to compromise. Only Ekiti was not swept off by the Buhari revolution in the entire south west geo-political zone.
Immediately Buhari was declared winner, the then APC dominated (19 out of 26) Ekiti State House of Assembly moved to impeach Fayose. The governor was issued an impeachment notice through the social media. However, the attempt to impeach Fayose was resisted by Ekiti people. On 11th April 2015, the people of Ekiti State delivered their judgment against Fayose’s foes. For the first time, one party won all the 26 assembly seats in the State House of Assembly.
Not satisfied with defeat suffered at the polls, the 19 APC lawmakers forged ahead in their bid to impeach Fayose. They tried all they could to truncate the mandate freely given to Fayose by the people but they failed. The errant interlopers did not relent until their tenure expired on June 5th 2015. Fayose extended hands of fellowership to the 19 APC lawmakers, paid all their entitlements, yet, they (lawmakers) chose to tow the pact of destruction. The traditional rulers and Elders of Ekiti pleaded to the lawmakers to sheath their swords, yet, they declined. The opposition boasted that if Fayose is impeached, heaven would not fall. But instead of the impeachment to prevail, Fayose’s foes were swept off by heavy rainfall on June 5th 2015.
I will conclude this piece by stating that today; if one says outside Ekiti that he admire Fayose, he might be reprimanded. But I can say expressly that the Afao-Ekiti born politician is not a man of questionable characters as his critics have posited his mistakes being a human being notwithstanding.
To be candid, Fayose is loathed and abhorred by the elites masquerading as agents of progressivism not because he has been delivering dividends of democracy to his people with reckless abandonment; he’s despised because he embraced populism to the detriment of elitism.
The elites detest Fayose’s frankness, hence, a declaration of war against him in the media. The Fayose that I know and that i am presently serving is not arrogant, proud, pompous, cruel and irresponsible as his opponents have posited in the media. My own Ayo Fayose is calm, intelligent, humble, honest, frank, factual, respectful, simple, caring, highly responsible and very hard working.
In fact, Fayose is known by the people of Ibadan, his place of birth as an intrepid creature embedded with fearlessness of heart. He was neither born with silver spoon nor hoary cloth. He was named Ayo (happiness) by his parents because he brought them joy while his admirers nick-named him Osokomole (warrior) because today, he’s the rock of Ekiti politics.
Sunshine Anifowose is the Personal Assistant to Dr. Ayo Fayose, Governor, Ekiti State.