Stakeholders hint on way forward in Kogi •Olafemi harps on reconciliation •Adeyemi advocates inclusive govt

FOLLOWING the victory of the Kogi State governor, Alhaji Yahaya Bello, at the Supreme Court, stakeholders in the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the state, including a former acting governor of the state, Clarence Olafemi and Senator Smart Adeyemi have given hints on how the crisis that greeted the party over the governorship election could be resolved.

While Olafemi, in an interview with Nigerian Tribune, noted that the way forward was true reconciliation, Adeyemi advised the governor to form an all-inclusive government that would take care of the various interests and groups in the party.

According to the former acting governor, since the Supreme Court is the final place of arbitration over governorship election, the next move should be to solidify the party.

He said it was unfortunate that the party became fragmented after the death of the initial governorship candidate, late Alhaji Abubakar Audu, noting that concerted efforts should be made to unite the warring factions.

He stated that there was the need for the governor to look into genuine cases of complaints about marginalisation and make amend in the interest of the party.

He said: “What should be paramount now is that everybody should sheath their swords and re-strategise for the next election, as this one is over because the Supreme Court is the highest place anybody can go. “However, the governor has to be accommodating; he should not throw away people’s criticism. He should see it as an opportunity to make amend; there is no perfect human being on earth. Whatever anybody is doing in government, he is only trying his best.

“Mediation can come from many sources, but the most identifiable source is the national. They should set up a reconciliation committee. Let people like me, who has not been so conspicuously on one side or the other, be able to come in, I have my friends and admirers, who are complaining. I belong to the government by virtue of being a party man, so I still relate with both.

“I am in a better position to join any reconciliation committee; we need it. The earlier the better now that we have got to the end of litigations. We should not waste time, because the consequences of delay is that it will make some people irreversibly opposed to this government, and what it means is that they will continue to fight the government and weaken the party because the governor will continue to fight back and at the end of the day, the consequences will not be good for any side.”

On his part, the former senator representing Kogi West Senatorial District, while congratulating the governor over the victory, expressed his support for the administration.

Adeyemi lauded Bello and the deputy governorship candidate of the APC, James Faleke, over the way and manner they handled the Supreme Court judgment on the governorship election in the state.

The former lawmaker however advised Bello to bring everybody onboard and give all the senatorial districts a sense of belonging as he pilots the affairs of the state, especially now that there is no more litigation that might distract him from performing.

Adeyemi said: “The judicial interpretation has more or less helped to settle the quarrel between ‘two brothers of same parent.’ And it is worthy of note to appreciate the level of understanding and sense of maturity displayed by the duo (Bello and Faleke) in the outcome of the Supreme Court verdict.

“ We are all brothers; if it is not central, it can be west, or east. We are too close to fight. We should forget whatever has happened and cooperate with the governor to move the state which is in dire need of development and growth, forward.

“If we have to criticize, it must be a constructive criticism; we should join hands with him. We don’t have any other state than Kogi, so let us put hands together to move the state forward and support the governor.”