The Ekiti State governorship election holding today across the 16 local government areas of the state is a battle, essentially, among three parties – the ruling All Progressives Congress; the Peoples Democratic Party; and the Social Democratic Party.
While the APC is fielding the immediate past Secretary to the Ekiti State Government, Biodun Oyebanji, as its candidate, the PDP has its former state chairman, Bisi Kolawole, as its flag-bearer, while the standard-bearer of the SDP, Chief Segun Oni, is a former governor of the state.
Each of the three parties is counting on its areas of strength and its rivals’ weakness to worm its way to victory.
Since 1999, the PDP and APC have rotated power in the state after a term of four years. The SDP has never had a shot at power in the state.
The APC, which has structures in all the 177 wards, has produced the governor three times since 1999, and is generally popular, being currently in power.
Pundits in the state consider the party as popular in the Ekiti West LGA because its candidate, Oyebanji, hails from the area.
Other council areas where the APC may have good results at today’s poll include Ado, Ikere, Oye, Irepodun/Ifelodun, Ekiti East, Ikole, Ido/Osi, and Ijero.
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The PDP is also a strong party with solid structures in all the wards across the 16 LGAs. The party had defeated sitting governments twice since 1999 and it has also reigned at the federal level for 16 years.
Although the party’s support base in Ekiti has been impacted by defection of some members in recent time, analysts say the party is still very much popular in Efon LGA, where its governorship candidate hails from, as well as Irepodun/Ifelodun, Efon, Ikere, Ikole, Emure, and Ekiti East local government areas.
Oni’s emergence as SDP’s governorship candidate in February has injected life into it. Its membership base suddenly rose, after Oni’s supporters and admirers in the PDP and APC decamped to the SDP.
Political pundits said that SDP may perform very well in Ido/Osi LGA where its candidate hails from. The SDP may also be popular in Ado, Ise/Orun, Emure, Irepodun, Ifelodun, Gbonyin, Moba, and Ikole, among others.
Meanwhile, leaders of the three prominent political parties have said their parties were strong in virtually all the 16 local government areas of the state and expressed confidence that their respective parties would clinch victory.