Crisis in ACN: Opeyemi Bamidele Decries Pseudo- Democratic Leadership

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The dust is yet to settle over the controversy generated by the decision of Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) to pick Babafemi Ojudu instead of Opeyemi Bamidele as the Senatorial candidate of Ekiti Central. Bamidele, two time commissioner in Lagos State, who had been tipped to be the candidate of the ACN in the 2011 senatorial election was dropped for Ojudu, a senior editor with The News magazine who eventually won the election. Bamidele eventually settled for the House of Representative.

Bamidele who has not hidden his opposition to the leadership of ACN, both in the State and at the national level has been rumoured to be planning to join another party to actualise his dream of becoming the governor Ekiti state. He particularly spoke against the dissolution of the ward executives of the party in October. In fact, he has not been speaking for the party in the House of Represensatives, or speak against the anti-people’s policies of the ruling Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, an action widely perceived as a protest against the decision of the party in 2011. A former President of National Association of Nigerian Students, NANS, who was expected to bring his vibrancy into the House of Representatives and having been National Publicity Director of Alliance for Democracy as well as Commissioner for Information in Lagos. Bamidele’s silence has been seen as a tactic used in preparation to dump the party that made him.

As if to lay credence to his planned defection to another party, Bamidele’s posters flooded major streets of Ekiti Sunday morning. The posters which have the logo of the Labour Party showed that he is running for the office of the Governor in 2014.

But in a swift reaction, Bamidele, who is in New Hampshire in the United States of America with his family for the Christmas break, said its the work of his enemies. He however said he would confront the undemocratic forces in the ACN at the appropriate time and that he would not be intimidated out of the party.

In a statement made available to NigerianEcho, Bamidele decried the action in these words.

“It has just been brought to my notice that less than forty eight hours after I left Ekiti for the United States of America, some faceless individuals had gone ahead to paste posters purporting that I would be running for the year 2014 Ekiti Governorship election on the platform of the Labour Party. I will like to place on record that I, Michael Opeyemi Bamidele, was not responsible for the said posters. I am a founding member of the ACN and I have not declared for any other party as a member.

“I must emphasise that I know those who masterminded the pasting of those posters and would address the issues at the appropriate time. In the meantime, I must reiterate that if this is an attempt by those who are conspiring against my vision and destiny to preempt and harass me into surrendering on my principled stance on issues, then they have failed. “

However, Bamidele said he has his dreams like any other son of Ekiti and that he would pursue his dreams. Part of his dreams was to confront the undemocratic forces in the party.

“Like other well meaning sons and daughters of Ekiti State, I have my own dreams and vision for a new and united Ekiti and when it is time to aspire in furtherance of that vision, I will do so, most courageously, within the party and without any apology to pseudo democrats who are trying to give the ACN a bad image through their acts of intimidation and intolerance informed by leadership complex. I have worked tirelessly with the leadership of the party since the year 2004 especially to strengthen the party in Ekiti State and I am sure the national and State leadership of the party know better as they fully understand that I am only out at this time to whip mediocrity and high handedness in whatever form to protect the integrity of the party. And when it is time to aspire, God will give me the grace to do so as a responsible member without minding whose ox is gored. This faith, I will keep; come rain or sunshine and under the banner of almighty God!”, Bamidele concluded.

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