Chief Samuel Adegboyega Adeyemi, is the Caretaker Committee Chairman, of All Progressives Congress in Ajeromi local government. Following the dissolution of the Party’s Exco pending the party’s Congress later this month, he abdicated his substantive nomenclature to that of a Caretaker Chairman. In this interview with our Inside Ajeromi/Ifelodun News, he spoke about the Local Government election coming up this Saturday and other things affecting the party.
What has changed in the way local government elections was held compared to the election coming up in a couple of days?
This is local government election. We conducted our primaries in the month of March where candidates emerged and you can see that they have kick started their campaigns.
What of the aggrieved aspirants?
No. Nobody was annoyed over the outcome of the primary election. However, for the aggrieved persons, we have a tradition in our local government, once a candidate emerges; we expect compliance from the nine wards which produce the councilors. As it’s done, 10 leaders from the wards usual meet to pick a consensus candidate from each of the wards.
But this time around, there were some changes. Despite the fact that the leaders have chosen people, the party still insisted that we must conduct primaries which will give everybody equal opportunity. It is from the primaries that aspirants for the councillorship seats emerged and so there was no crisis.
Some of the aspirants alleged they were threatened into dropping their ambition.
That is a lie, nobody was threatened. We have just finished our reconciliation meeting with all the Councillorship aspirants and all of them are happy, because they know whoever is struggling to become something must make a move. But, when you move to become a candidate and you know there is a more popular and acceptable candidate than you, what do you do? They know all this, and I can assure you that there is no crisis.
It is only one person that refused to back down, but he knows the rule that once we have picked our candidate, the process is over. However, we never saw any aspirant as disobedient because, we know that it is not a crime to aspire, but if 20 people aspire and in their heart, they know that its only one person that will emerge, after reconciliation, everybody will fall in line.
For example, some of the defeated candidates have gone back to their wards to embrace the winners.
APC is taking the election as one united party that has no division. They have instituted a reconciliation committee at the state level. Prince Rabiu Oluwa is heading the Lagos Central reconciliation committee as well as the Lagos West because of its large size it was divided into two.
How about the case of the former chairmanship aspirant, Hon Kuye, whom we gathered was promised the position of Secretary to the LGA.
No. No one was promised anything, but our party always appeal to aspirants to accept the outcome of the primary election. Once an aspirant accepts the outcome and work for the party, it is now left for the party to know what is good for the person.
Kuye stepped down a day before the election and on the day of the election, he sent a congratulatory message to Hon Fatai Ayoola that he accepted his candidature. His wife put to bed, a day to the primary, and during the naming ceremony of the new baby, Hon Fatai Ayoola was there to celebrate with the Kuyes.
You know our party APC is not conservative; we are progressive, so, we did not promise anybody anything.
You are contesting the July election against other political parties, how sure is APC of winning?
Does PDP still exist in this local government? I thought they had all joined us. You mean they also have a candidate. PDP is a big joke, we do not take them serious, but whether serious or not, our party is preparing very well for the victory.
As the chairman of the party, how are you assuring the voters that the election would be peaceful and that they can freely come out and exercise their civic rights?
Our party is a very peaceful; we are not used to thuggery. Our elections have often been conducted free and fair. If there would be any arguments, it would be from the other party because we have the majority. When you know that you will win in a contest, why would you want to foment trouble but simply pray for peace to reign?
So, what security measures is your party putting up for the election?
It is the police that would provide the security, but as far as our party is concerned, we are preparing for a peaceful election. The police and other security officers will handle security matters proper.