THE National Executive Committee (NEC) of the Alliance for Democracy (AD), on Friday, rejected the candidature of Chief Olusola Oke for the forthcoming governorship election in Ondo State.
The NEC, which held an emergency meeting in Akure, the state capital, condemned the withdrawal of the party’s candidate, Akin Olowookere, to pave the way for Oke’s candidature.
The meeting passed a vote of no confidence on the national chairman of the party, Chief Joseph Avazi; national secretary; Akin Fasogbon; national auditor, Ayodele Ismail and the West Zonal chairman, Chief Tayo Onayemi, for not following the due process before adopting Oke as the party’s candidate.
The NEC claimed that the national chairman and the three others unilaterally adopted Oke as the party’s candidate, contrary to the provision of the party’s constitution.
The committee said, “Oke’s adoption as a flag bearer on the platform of the AD is just known to Chief Avazi, the national chairman, in connivance with three others who constituted themselves as the NEC of the party.”
Speaking during the meeting, the Deputy National Chairman (North), Mallam Musa Loyi, alleged that the national chairman had not called NEC meeting since he was elected into the position in December 2015.
He also accused Avazi of denying the party the opportunity to take part in the just-concluded governorship election in Edo State by failing to endorse and submit to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), the name of the candidate of the party, Ibrahim Garuba.
A communique issued at the end of the meeting, read by Ibrahim Abdullah and supported by all the 44 members in attendance, read: “This meeting condemns in its entirety, all actions of the four officers in the emergence of Chief Olusola Oke as the flagbearer of the party in Ondo State.
“The action in this case runs in total contradiction to the party’s constitution. They have no vested power to usurp the powers of the national executive of the party. Olusola Oke is hereby not adopted as the flagbearer of the party in the gubernatorial election of Ondo State, scheduled for November 26, 2016,
“The national chairman and the secretary must convene the NEC meeting in Abuja within 21 days with effect from 14 October, 2016.”
The meeting stated that failure to comply with its directive would lead to employing the constitution of the party in settling the impending crisis but said it was open to negotiation if the due process was fulfilled.
Reacting to the development, the media aide to Chief Oke, Rotimi Ogunleye, said there was no official reaction to all the allegations. He said the party’s executive in the state should be in the best position to react to the allegations.
Oke defected to AD after losing the All Progressives Congress (APC) ticket to Rotimi Akeredolu (SAN) in the September 3 primary of the party.