ACCEPTANCE SPEECH BY
H.E., Dr. Kayode Fayemi, CON
All Progressives Congress (APC) Gubernatorial Primaries
Saturday, May 12, 2018 | Ado-Ekiti, Ekiti State, Nigeria
Distinguished Party Leaders
Members of the press
Distinguished ladies and gentlemen.
This is the day the Lord has made, and we rejoice and are glad in it.Today, the people have spoken and their voice has been heard resoundingly.
What we have witnessed today, is one of the essential elements in the electoral cycle in any democracy – the exercise of the collective will over the aspirations of many – the emergence of the candidate of our great party, the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the July 14, 2018 gubernatorial election in Ekiti state, out of many eminently qualified aspirants.
Indeed, it has been a hard fought contest, and I am extremely humbled that our delegates have counted me worthy of the honour of bearing the banner of our great party. This victory is not mine alone, it belongs to all Ekiti people who desire a greater tomorrow.
The free, fair and transparent process we have witnessed today is a testament to our great party’s democratic credentials that guarantees a level playing field for everyone aspiring to high office. This is a feat we must all be proud of.
But the battle has only just begun – the contest to Reclaim Our Land and Restore Our Values. The fight to ensure our great party comes out victorious in the July 14, 2018 general election.
Your Excellences, Distinguished Party Leaders, Honourable Delegates, Members of the press, Observers, Distinguished ladies and gentlemen. Without a doubt, Ekiti is in critical need of rescue. It is imperative that we urgently commence the task of purging ourselves of the bad reputation we have earned in recent years and restore good governance to the state.
In my valedictory address in 2014, I said that future administrations would be judged by the standards we set during our time in office. It should be clear to any observer that over the past four years, Ekiti has retreated from the progressive values that we espoused in office and our grand ideals of human development.
We have seen a cynical approach to politics that exploits the penury of the poor and the vulnerability of the marginalised. We have seen the entrenchment of the disdain for elders, traditional institutions, and all forms of constituted authorities.
Instead of continuing the quest for freedom from ignorance, disease and want, what we have seen is a paradigm that deepens captivity to these ills. In short, the last four years has called into question all that we stand for as a people. The timeless values of honour, dignity, nobility and civility encapsulated in the Omoluabi ethos have been eroded.
We must resume the march to break the yoke of ignorance that keeps our people down; liberate them from ill-health and other limitations that restrain them from achieving their potentials; and break the stranglehold of poverty which keeps people from living full creative lives.
In practical and policy terms, what this means is that the APC administration to be sworn in on October 15, 2018, by the grace of God, must resume good governance that was cut short four years ago, and once again prioritise social investments in education, healthcare and other social protection programmes that reduce the cost of living, while raising the quality of life.
In all electoral contests, tempers often rise and nerves are frayed. I therefore humbly appeal to all my supporters, and to my co-contestants and their supporters, to let go of past differences as we forge ahead to a new dawn.
I furthermore very respectfully request the support of my brothers and sisters – co-contestants in this primary election. I plead that we put our differences aside and work together as one strong and indivisible party for success in the upcoming general election.
I would be counting on all my co-contestants to share their wealth of experience, ideas and knowledge in furtherance of our collective desire to make Ekiti great again.
As I have said ever so often, all those who contested the primary election today are eminently qualified to be Governor. I salute your courage and congratulate you all for enriching the process. However, together we are greater and stronger than the sum of our individual parts, and no individual, myself inclusive, is bigger than our great party. That is why I consider it necessary to constitute a body of all my co-contestants into the Candidate’s Advisory Council.
As I conclude, I must seize this opportunity to express my gratitude to members of the National Working Committee of our great party, and all those that have contributed to the free, fair and transparent conduct of this exercise.
I also thank our party’s national leaders, especially those from the southwest that have worked behind the scenes to ensure this process is as free of rancour and strife as possible. We count on them following through with their promise to reunite and strengthen the cohesion of all stakeholders in our great party in Ekiti state in the coming days.
Let me finally send word to my own Ekiti people most of who are likely to wake up to this news when they wake up in the morning. In accepting this onerous responsibility of being my party’s gubernatorial candidate in the July 14 election, I want you to rest assured that I’m not any vengeance mission. I have a profound sense of an unfinished business – the business of deepening our development agenda and making poverty history in this land. In the course of my previous service in the state, there were certainly acts of omission and commission in our quest to rapidly develop our state. Let me therefore seize this opportunity to apologize to those who might have been offended in one form or another by our policies and programmes. Together, we will take our state to higher grounds.
Distinguished ladies and gentlemen, I thank you, once again. Alale Ekiti a gbe a o.
H.E., Dr. Kayode Fayemi