A former governor of Oyo State, Adebayo Alao-Akala, has confirmed that he has asked his supporters in Oyo State to work for the success of Adebayo Adelabu, governorship candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in next week’s election.
Akala is the governorship candidate of the Action Democratic Party (ADP) in the state, but has now jettisoned his ambition.
“I remain in ADP and all our candidates for the House of Assembly seats will stand in the March 9 elections, on the platform of the ADP, with my full support but I will work for the victory of Bayo Adelabu,” he told reporters in Ibadan on Friday, confirming earlier reports that he was supporting the APC candidate.
He explained that his alliance with APC was based on the party’s belief that the ADP could perform optimally, and maintain a strong grassroots network not only in Ogbomoso but also in Ibadan, Ibarapa, Oke-Ogun and Oyo.
”Our core values and philosophies as indicated in our ADP manifesto, ‘Rescue Mission Agenda’ has been adopted by Bayo Adelabu with the Presidency as witness. I have, therefore, as a candidate of ADP, accepted to support Adelabu of APC for victory and therefore form a coalition government.
“My solemn gratitude goes to our members, state and national leaders of the ADP, for the ample opportunity given to me to lead and fly the flag of the party. Though my decision is a very tough one, it is for the progress of Oyo State.”
Alao-Akala said his decision following the outcome of the just concluded presidential and National Assembly elections was based on the outcome of some incidents.
“It is widely known, that, I initiated alliance talks with the main opposition parties in Oyo State vis-a-vis my great party, the Action Democratic Party (ADP), the African Democratic Congress (ADC), the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) and the Zenith Labour Party (ZLP) with my boss, the former governor of Oyo State and Osi Olubadan, Senator Rashid Adewolu Ladoja as mediator.
“Meanwhile, during the alliance process, I received an emergency call from the Presidency. In the meeting with Presidency, I was prevailed upon to work for APC. My response was that I should be given 48 hours to consult with my people, the opposition parties’ alliance committee as well as the teeming members, leaders and the stakeholders of my great party, ADP.
“On resumption of the alliance meeting, my boss, (High Chief Rashid Adewolu Ladoja), told me point blank in the presence of other governorship candidates, that I was not in consideration for governorship due to my place of birth – Ogbomoso. According to him, ‘We need an Ibadan man to slug it out with another Ibadan man, which is Bayo Adelabu.’ With the statement, my geographical place of birth is the only crime I committed.
“Since I’ve been unfairly and technically booted out of the alliance talks, I consulted with my party stakeholders and supporters whose support have brought me this far. Having realised that my 2019 governorship agenda cannot be realised in isolation based on the present situation, the only option remaining for me is to form an alliance with Mr. Bayo Adelabu of APC.
“I, Otunba Christopher Adebayo Alao-Akala, the Oyo State 2019 Action Democratic Party (ADP), have decided to form an alliance with the governorship candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Mr. Adebayo Adekola Adelabu, ahead of the March 9 Governorship and State House of Assembly Elections in the state. However, all the ADP candidates for the House of Assembly seats will go to the elections with my maximum support.”
Akala defected to the APC last year, only to join ADP, a few months back.