The Ekiti State Governor, Ayodele Fayose, has revealed that the All Progressives Congress leaders mounted pressure on him to trade the ticket of the Peoples Democratic Party’s candidate, Prof. Kolapo Olusola, for their candidate, Dr. Kayode Fayemi, in the July 14 governorship poll.
The governor said he bluntly rejected the request because he could not tarnish his image and compromise his integrity.
Fayose stated this during an interview on state radio and television in Ado Ekiti on Tuesday night.
He said, “They approached me to negotiate with them and trade away the ticket of Olusola to pave the way for the victory of Fayemi. They cited examples of leaders who have done that before and wished I do the same.
“But I bluntly told them that I would never do that. If others are doing it, I am not like them. I have integrity, I am Peter, the rock. I am set for another defeat of Fayemi and the APC. After Ekiti, we shall move to a higher level in Abuja.
“They said I am stubborn, I told them I am stubborn because I am a man with principles. Ekiti people know where I stand. I will not betray Ekiti people who love me and my party.”
The governor, who said that his party was set for another electoral victory, condemned the arrest and intimidation of teachers and supporters of the PDP.
Specifically, he accused the Department of State Services of doing the bidding of Fayemi by harassing teachers and perceived opponents of the immediate past Minister of Mines and Steel Development.
The governor said the teachers were being harassed because of their resolve to vote Olusola, and wondered if the people Fayemi wanted to govern were the ones being clamped into detention by the DSS.
He urged the teachers, Okada operators, drivers, traders, artisans, youths, pensioners and workers to remain resolute in their determination to vote Olusola.
He also urged the people to protect their votes by staying after casting their votes to ensure that the votes count in the end.
“Don’t go away after voting; stay back to monitor your votes, be vigilant and prepare for prospective riggers who would come around.”
Meanwhile, the Inspector- General of Police, Ibrahim Idris, has threatened to dismiss any officer found hobnobbing with politicians or act in a way that could compromise the July 14 governorship election in Ekiti State.
He urged his men to be neutral and apolitical in their engagement before, during and after the poll.
The IG spoke in Ado Ekiti on Wednesday during a lecture organised for Divisional Police Officers in the state and other officers and men of the force to sensitise them to the need to exhibit right attitudes during the election.
He was represented by the Commander in charge of Public Complaint Rapid Response Unit, ACP Abayomi Shogunle.
He said, “We have no business being partisan. Our duty is to provide security for the electorate, election observers, ballot materials on the day of the election and nothing more.
“I want you to be professional in your duties and wherever you are posted to. The police work is like a service to the people. Don’t intimidate anybody to please politicians. You must think of your careers in the force and prevent enjoyment of one day from destroying it.
“I know your salaries are not big, but there is dignity in contentment. Don’t allow these moneybags to spoil your names and your future.
“You could recollect that those officers that were accused to have misbehaved in 2014 in Ekiti State have been investigated and punished by the authorities.
“Election will come and go and later politicians shall realign and become friends while you will be in trouble, facing it all alone.
“We are saying that we are going to dismiss whoever is found guilty of misbehaviour in this election. If we have strong evidence against you, we will also take legal action against you.”
Idris also directed the Commissioner of Police, Mr. Ahmed Bello, to direct his men to destroy all illegal checkpoints mounted across the state.
“Though some checkpoints are made to create a defence, those are legal ones permitted to exist. But anyone that is mounted to extort the populace must cease to exist,” he added.