Ekiti 2014: Tinubu faults Bamidele’s suspension


His words: “The news of the purported removal of Opeyemi Bamidele came as a surprise. The decision of the members of the Ekiti House Caucus in this regard truncates ongoing efforts at reconciliation. What took some members of the leadership of the party to Ekiti State recently was a continuation of the process of appeal and reconciliation. The objective here is to first understand and iron out the issues that have resorted in a gulf between Opeyemi Bamidele and Governor Kayode Fayemi on one hand and the party towards building a formidable political house in Ekiti.
“From my vantage point, I don’t believe the members of the Ekiti caucus could possibly take such a step for such a scant reason. I trust their democratic pedigree to highly believe that they would not be used to take this false step which would violate established party rules, processes and traditions.”
Tinubu noted that decisions of such critical nature must be done with the consultation of the national leadership of the party, saying that from what he can gathered, the national chairman and the party’s leadership were never consulted or notified about the suspension.
He said: “For that reason alone, if such an action has been taken, those who did so should retrace their steps to avoid creating an unnecessary difficulty for themselves and the Ekiti chapter of the party.”
The ACN leader reiterated his position that any party member of the party has a right to contest the governorship of Ekiti or any other state, saying: “Any other person, including Opeyemi Bamidele, has the right. This right is so fundamental to internal democracy that I do not believe he should be sanctioned at this point where the most he has done is make unofficial statements about contesting. Our party cannot join the club of other parties that punish members for expressing interests in an office.”
He added: “While Opeyemi Bamidele’s position may not be popular among his colleagues, he has the right to believe as he does. We must protect and smother unpopular and minority positions. If we don’t like it, we vote against it at the appropriate time but we do not punish people simply for thinking differently, this is how we must grow our democracy.”
Tinubu further said that the ACN’s leadership will continue to persuade Bamidele not to rock the boat and play into the hands of opponents, particularly the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP.

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