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SDP chieftain urges Okun community to support Murtala Ajaka to end marginalization

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A chieftain of the Social Democratic Party (SDP), Hon Ben Adaji, has called on the people of Okun community in Kogi West Senatorial district to throw their weight behind Murtala Yakubu Ajaka, the Guber candidate of SDP in the November election as the best way to end marginalisation.

Adaji, a House of Representatives candidate under SDP for Ankpa, Olamaboro and Omala federal constituency in the just concluded general elections, made the call on Sunday while reacting to President Bola Tinubu’s declaration to the elders of the Okun community who visited him at the presidential villa last week.

The Okun elders led by Professor Michael Ikupolati during the visit complained of marginalisation against the Okun people in the political arrangements of Kogi State since its creation in 1992.

The former House of Reps candidate commended President Tinubu for his fatherly advice by telling the Okun elders that politics is a game of numbers and they may need to negotiate their way out of marginalisation if they have the numbers.

Mr Adaji, who aspired for the House of Representatives under the platforms of the All Progressives Congress APC in 2015 and 2919 before decamping to SDP in 2023 due to what he described as lack of fairness in APC, maintained that, Ajaka, who is well aware of the power arrangements in the state even before the demise of the late Audu, will give the Okun people a strong voice if elected.

“Let me use this opportunity to urge leaders of Okun in Kogi West to throw their weight behind Murtala Yakubu Ajaka, the SDP governorship candidate. That is the only way they can address the issue of marginalization that they raised during the visit of Okun elders led by Professor Michael Ikupolati to the President and his subsequent advise to them that politics is a game of numbers.

“It’s only through dialogue and understanding that they can benefit from the governorship seat of Kogi State, not through violence as was the case of the present Gov Yahaya Bello. In order to restore the arrangement that was put in place for the consideration of Okun people prior to the sudden and sad death of Prince Abubakar, they should support the SDP candidate.

“I was privy to the arrangement for power shift for the Okun people to produce the next Governor of Kogi State in 2015 after Price Abubakar Audu’s four years tenure and that was why Hon. James Abiodun Faleke was picked to deputise Audu before death struck in 2015, thereby destabilising the arrangement.”

Adaji who is also a veteran journalist and a security expert in the field of Human security and counter terrorism, called on the elders of Okun to go back to the drawing board and engage Murtala Yakuba Ajaka in a similar dialogue with the view to realizing the dream.

The SDP chieftain adviced Governor Yahaya Bello, who ascended the office by sheer providence, to count himself lucky rather than thinking himself invincible.

“It is sad that today, the governor has turned against the Igala people who gave him overwhelming support and has chosen to impose his cousin Usman Ododo on the people of Kogi even if it’s through the barrel of gun.

“He should learn from Tinubu who has come out clearly to declare that democracy is a game of numbers and can not be done through the barrel of the gun. He must allow a level playing ground for the people to come out and elect a governor of their choice.

Adaji lamented that the Igala, Ibira and the Okun who were hitherto brothers and sisters now engage themselves like cat and dog because the governor has caused serious divisions amongst the tribes.

“I want to say in clear terms that Ajaka is a unifier who has come to liberate the people of the state from dictatorship.The people know this and they will be voting irrespective of political affiliation. They will be considering individuals capacity instead of party lines. Our people are peace loving but would not tolerate any attempt at thwarting the will of the majority.

I enjoined the Okun and the Ibira to support Murtala Yakuba Ajaka and vote massively for the SDP in the forthcoming gubernatorial elections in the overall interest of the state, ” he said.


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Kogi Governorship Election,Murtala Ajaka
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