Human Rights crusader and a senior advocate, Femi Falana, has foretold of the inauguration of Ekiti State governor-elect, Ayodele Fayose, as bearing doom for some indigenes of the state. Fayose is expected to effectively take over the reins of government from outgoing Governor Kayode Fayemi on 16 October. Falana, also an indigene, was quoted by Punch as describing the election of Fayose as a throwback “to the era of state-sponsored terrorism.” He said “Already, rival drivers’ unions and urchins are unleashing mayhem on innocent people, including judges and judiciary workers.”
The lawyer claimed to “know industrialists who have decided to relocate to neighbouring states,” including “some friends who have resolved to go on exile from Ekiti State for the next four years.”
“The exodus of business and the elite,” he said, “will have adverse effect on the fragile economy of the state because no investor takes funds to any place where the rule of law is in abeyance.”
When asked if the people were right in the choice of Fayose, Falana explained that “The Ekiti people are perfectly entitled to elect whoever they like to govern them. That is what bourgeois democracy is all about. Up till now, the world is still paying for the decision of the American people to elect George Bush Jr. I believe that the wishes of the Ekiti electorate should be respected.” His advice: “Fayose owes himself a duty to turn away from violence because no leader can govern in an atmosphere of anarchy and chaos. He has to embrace the rule of law” and “should be advised not to frustrate his own inauguration. With the ongoing political crisis, some development agencies have decided to pull out of the state.”
However, Fayose’s aide, named Lere Olayinka said “Falana, as a lawyer, should know that he does not have more stake in Ekiti than the over 200,000 Ekiti people, who expressed their preference for Fayose with their votes on June 21.
“Ekiti people have spoken loudly with their votes and if the likes of Falana does not like the decision the people have made, they can relocate to wherever they so desire.
“As for Fayose, he will remain committed to the welfare of the teachers, local government workers, civil servants, health workers, okada riders, artisans, market men and women, students and others who gave him their votes on June 21, not minding the anger of the likes of Falana, who believe that Ekiti people cannot choose their own governor.”