Otunba Sunday J. Ochayi is a legal practitioner, solicitor and Consultant, from Benue State, based in Ado Ekiti, the Ekiti State Capital. He has been in legal profession in Ekiti for more than a decade.
In this interview with our Correspondent, ADEWUMI ADEMIJU, the legal luminary analyzed the intricacies surrounding the Ekiti July 14 Governorship election , the controversial advice of Former President Obasanjo to the current President Muhammadu Buhari on 2019 general Election. Excerpts:
After the declaration on June 12 by the President, people started clamouring for extension of the president’s office in line with his approval of June 12 as democracy day, what’s the constitutional implication?
The idea of celebrating the actual winner of June 12- Chief M K O Abiola by the present government is commendable The conferment of National honours showed they were once President /Vice president.
As far as Nigeria Constitution is concerned, the four years of any elected officer begins to count from the day he takes the oath of office which will expire in the eve of 12 midnight of the expiration date. There can’t be no extension of 4 year tenure of the current government because he took the oath on May 29, his four years will expire in the midnight of May 29, otherwise, it will be a breach of constitution. Those clamouring for extension is an act in futility.
There are two different things now. May 29 is the actual handing over date, June 12 is a Democracy Day.
Ekiti State is ready to go to polls on Saturday July 14. There is no doubt that political activity is hot in the state .As a legal practitioner who has been in the state for over a decade, what’s your assessment on the major contenders?
Obviously there are two major parties, two gladiators- Professor Kolapo Olusola – PDP candidate and Dr John Kayode Fayemi – APC Candidate.
People want to see dividends of democracy. Which of the two parties has delivered dividends of democracy? I have been in Ekiti, assessed good roads, people’s welfare, social amenities, security, job creation, employment, general well being of the people, which of the parties has delivered. I’m apolitical. The answer is not farfetched.
The act speaks for itself , people would vote the candidate/party that has given them the dividends of democracy and for long lasting provision, not money to mortgage their conscience bases on empirical things.
Basically the two major contenders do not stand on equal pedestrian. Fayemi was once a governor, Kolapo Olusola a Deputy, acting under the instruction of a Governor.
Fayemi as Governor/Minister- his achievements would speak for him in terms of peoples’ welfare.
For Kolapo Olusola, he would be based on – what has his government done, Have they been able to give employment, security, if the answer is yes, people would vote for him. The edifice of Judiciary in Ekiti, dual carriage ways are handwork of Fayose. He opened the state by way of road, water, infrastructure, promotion of staff, Fayose empowered people.
In Ekiti state today, the judiciary has an edifice that can be compared in the world; it’s an achievement in the area of infrastructure.
The bridge though no economical valuable has added to the beauty of the state.
The issue of non payment of salary is a general problem, happening in some other states too, apart from Lagos and Anambra, all other states are owing salary.
What is more!, the World Bank has said that Nigeria runs a poor state, it’s not peculiar to Ekiti .
Ekiti before election period was peaceful, we have enjoyed relative peace, security in the state, consistency of water
Also In education, before Ekiti was no 36, during this government, Ekiti came first in WAEC. These among other things are all gains of the government. They have the best hand. No perfect system anywhere.
By and large , Fayose has done his best, the answer is there for people to see from the analysis
Ekiti should vote candidate of their choice who will give them dividends of democracy, they should guide their votes without manipulation.
INEC should be an umpire not to manipulate, otherwise people will fight it.
Former President Olusegun Obasanjo is at it again. Just as he did to Jonathan in the 2015 election, he has advised President Muhammadu Buhari not to run in 2019. What’s your take?
Obasanjo telling Buhari not to run is not unexpected. Leaders know where it pinches the people. The words are truth, because APC has failed to deliver in Nigeria. They campaigned that they would stop incessant killings, but have not done that.
People are hungry, suffering in the country. APC has not done well. You can’t keep fighting corruption and people are dying,, we don’t know the where about of the money taking from looters .
Obasanjo is not out of place, he is fighting for Nigerians. He warned Jonathan then, and he lost.