The government of Ekiti has raised the alarm on an alleged plot by “some political interests” to defame Kayode Fayemi, governor of the state.
In a statement, Yinka Oyebode, the governor’s chief press secretary, alleged that some persons within the All Progressive Congress (APC) are uncomfortable with Fayemi’s “rising profile” and are looking for ways to de-market him as the 2023 presidential election draws near.
He added that the plan is to discredit Fayemi and make him unacceptable to the public.
“The general public is hereby alerted of a fresh plot by some political interests to activate a spate of negative media campaigns against the person of Dr Kayode Fayemi, Governor of Ekiti State and Chairman of the Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF),” Oyebode said.
“The plot, as uncovered, is to use some faceless political groups and political jobbers from different parts of the country to defame the Ekiti State Governor.
“Specifically, the plan is to use the faceless groups to discredit Governor Fayemi and portray him as unacceptable to the generality of the people across the six geo-political zones of the country. This plot is part of their game plan for the 2023 presidential contest.
“For the avoidance of doubt, Dr Fayemi has not told anyone that he is in the race for the Presidency of Nigeria. He has always maintained that he is on duty in Ekiti and would like to concentrate on that assignment. What he does afterwards is in the hands of God and he will cross that bridge at the appropriate time. He restated this position during his most recent interview with Arise TV on January 1, 2022.
“Some entrenched interests within the ruling All Progressives Congress, however, seem uncomfortable with the rising profile of the NGF Chairman and have resorted to cheap blackmail aimed at de-marketing him.
“We urge members of the public to disregard the potpourri of lies and cheap blackmail that could be released in the coming days, while the promoters of this smear campaign are advised to concentrate on marketing their aspiration to the good people of Nigeria without recourse to defamation or character assassination of perceived competitors.
“The Nigerian Constitution states clearly the qualifications for the position of the President of the country. Every qualified adult has the right to aspire to the number one position. Therefore, we do not believe it is proper, decent or strategic for any aspirant to think his campaign can only gather momentum when he destroys the reputation of a fellow citizen who is perceived as a possible opponent.”