In an attempt to select the most credible candidate ahead of the 2014 governorship election, the Ekiti State chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has pruned the number of aspirants from 29 to nine.
According to a statement issued in Ado-Ekiti yesterday, by the state Chairman of the PDP, Mr. Makanjuola Ogundipe, the State Working Committee (SWC) of the party took the decision in its bid to select a viable and serious-minded candidate who would defeat the incumbent, Dr. Kayode Fayemi, in the poll.
Though he did not mention the names of the nine aspirants who made the list, he, however, said the review of the list of the aspirants was an ongoing process.
On the issue of consensus that had become a controversial item in the party, Ogundipe said it was only the national secretariat of the party that could decide on the process to be adopted in choosing the party’s standard bearer.
He added that the party needed an election winner, a grassroots politician and somebody, who had the pedigree and intellectual capacity to govern the state.
While commending all the aspirants for their efforts in mobilising people for the party, Ogundipe said: “The effort of the aspirants in galvanising support for our great party is laudable. They have been going round giving messages of hope to our members and assuring them that our party will return to power in the state next year.”
Ogundipe said the party would provide a level playing field for all aspirants and that the process through which the party’s candidate would emerge would be transparent and fair to all.
Among the people that have signified intention to contest the election on the platform of the party are the state’s former Governor, Mr. Ayo Fayose; Mr. Adedayo Adeyeye, Hon. Femi Bamisile, Senator Ayo Arise, Ambassador Dare Bejide, Chief Abiodun Aluko, Chief Bisi Omoyeni, Senator Gbenga Aluko, Navy Capt. Caleb Olubolade, Mr. Ropo Ogunbolude, Mr. Segun Olanrewaju.
Others are Dr. Peter Obafemi, Mr. Bimbo Owolabi, Mr. Bodunde Adeyanju, Mrs Abiodun Olujimi, Senator Bode Olowoporoku, Mr. Davies Olaosebikan, Mr. Reuben Famuyibo among others.