By; OLADELE ADEDAYO, Ado-Ekiti
As the Ekiti State Gubernatorial election scheduled for July 14 this year approaches,former Deputy Governor of the state, Dr. Sikiru Lawal, has maintained that his interest in the race doesn’t represent any Muslim agenda as being perceived in certain quarters.
Lawal, a former Peoples Democratic Party(PDP) stalwart and deputy Governor during Engr. Segun Oni’s administration, has also joined the governorship race on the platform of the Labour Party(LP) in the state.
He had last week resigned his membership of the PDP, hinging this on alleged efforts by Governor Ayodele Fayose to impose his Deputy, Prof. Kolapo Olusola on the party.
The Governorship hopeful said, though Muslims are questing for the governorship seat but
stated that he was contesting based on his track records and
acceptability among the people of the State.
At a press conference in Ado-Ekiti on Wednesday heralding his formal
declaration for the seat and the political party to use in realizing
the ambition, Lawal expressed
confidence that both Muslims and Christians will vote for him based
on his integrity .
Lawal added that he had developed a well thought out agenda that
rested basically on improved agriculture, Wealth Creation, Education and Health(AWEH) he would deploy to make Ekiti better that it is.
He also denied the report that he was part of the party leaders that
adopted the Deputy Governor some months ago, saying the party leaders wanted to trick him into such a shady deal but rebuffed it, since he has similar ambition.
He said he decided to quit the PDP due to anti-democratic practices
like imposition, impunity and oppression of people with ambitions that have taken over the party.
Lawal added that the fact that the Grand Imam of Ekiti State, Alhaji
Jamiu Kewulere demanded for a Muslim Governor in Ekiti on the premise that they have never occupied the exalted seat since 1999 doesn’t portray him as fighting for Muslim adherents in the state.
“I am not fighting for Muslims, because this is a political and not
religious issue. I am not in Ekiti for any agenda, it is an agenda to
make our state great”, he said.
He added further: “The coming election is not about money. But , if
they bring money, collect it and vote for a man that can make Ekiti
great , because probably it must have been a money meant for a certain project that they embezzled.
“We have tried PDP and APC and saw nothing, this is the time to try
LP. If you see what LP did in Ondo, Ekiti will pray to have LP in the
He said the two leading parties in the state, the All Progressives
Congress(APC) and PDP have disappointed the people, urging them to try LP, so that all the landmark projects executed by former Governor Olusegun Mimiko in Ondo State can be enacted in Ekiti.
On his agenda for the state, he stated: “Agriculture should be the
backbone of an economy that is undergoing full throttle of
diversification process and we are going to tap into the agrarian
capacity of our dear state for it to be veritable bulwark for our economic prosperity and abundance.
“As a former Director in the State civil service, we shall pay the salary of workers, pension and gratuities as and when due, upgrade hospitals for better healthcare delivery, because we are preaching humanity first”.