If a poll is taken among supporters of the All Progressives Congress (APC) about which politician from the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) is most hated, Ayo Fayose, the impolitic governor of Ekiti, will rank high on the list.
Politicians from different parties meet and mingle frequently, but Fayose is so confrontational in his opposition and so scorching in his criticism of the ruling party that fraternising with him is not just difficult but – if you are an APC politician – unacceptable.
Aregbesola must have known all this when he decided to accept Fayose’s invitation to speak in Ado-Ekiti, the Ekiti capital, on the “imperative of unity” at an event to mark the 20th anniversary of the creation of the state. He hailed Fayose at the event for being a hardworking governor who had turned around the fortunes of Ekiti.
The Ekiti chapter of the APC criticised Aregbesola for accepting Fayose’s invitation. Speaking through its publicity secretary, Taiwo Olatunbosun, the APC wondered how one of the leading lights in south-west APC could visit a man who once wished death upon President Muhammadu Buhari.
Olatubosun alleged that Fayose had inflicted pains on many APC members, “some of whom had been languishing in jail for about two years for the offences they did not commit”.
“Aregbesola’s visit to Fayose praising him as ‘omoluabi’ and for the achievements by APC-led government is not alone embarrassing but also awful in the face of sustained attacks on APC members, some of whom are still languishing in jail for about two years over trumped-up charges by Fayose,” the statement read.
“We find it most embarrassing and shocking that one of our leaders would be planning a re-alignment of forces with a governor that has made life a nightmare for our members, the same members that will participate in the said re-alignment that Aregbesola is talking about, without sparing a thought for members held in jail unjustly while other APC members are routinely attacked by Fayose’s men on the streets,” the statement said.