The 19 All Progressives Congress (APC) lawmakers in Ekiti State House of Assembly have advised the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) chieftain, Ebenezer Babatope, to take a rest after the crushing defeat his party suffered from APC in both his state and federal levels to enable him cope with the rigour of sound thinking to contribute positively to the growth of democracy in Nigeria.
They told him to take his heart away from the trauma of his new status to avoid a psychological torture inherent in his hate campaign against APC National Leader, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu.
They also counseled him to be discrete in his utterances on the illegalities by Governor Ayodele Fayose lest he be labelled a leader with scant sense of good judgment.
Reacting to Babatope’s Monday, 27th April, 2015, interview in The Punch newspaper where he called them charlatans, the lawmakers in a statement by the Special Adviser on Media to Speaker Adewale Omirin, Wole Olujobi, regretted that at an old age of close to 80, Babatope could sit in court of jealousy running down junior fellows and supporting a lawless governor that is daily re-writing the nation’s Constitution to the chargrin of the world.
Slamming the PDP leader for calling them charlatans, the lawmakers questioned his integrity as a top Nigerian in crisis management, saying it was regrettable that a supposed statesman could succumb to partisan emotions while his country crumbled under the weight of illegal acts of brigands in government.
They also questioned his integrity in supporting impeachment of Ondo State Deputy Governor, Ali Olanusi, over trumped-up minor charges while warning against the impeachment of Governor Fayose who committed grave offences, including treason.
“A question mark is being put on the integrity of Babatope as a leader if he could support Ondo impeachment but he is now calling Ekiti lawmakers names for questioning Fayose over a treason charge by changing the leadership of the Assembly with seven members, contrary to the prescription of the constitution.
“Babatope’s past role in Ekiti Government House is still fresh in our memory with special reference to the allegation that he once participated in the supervision of thugs to unleash mayhem on our members. Up till now, he has not refuted that allegation and we wonder why it is when to support violent acts like we have under Fayose that Babatope makes headlines on Ekiti issues.
“We want to ask Babatope where was his integrity and clarity of thought when he kept quiet when Fayose invaded the court and beat up a judge. What did he say when Fayose froze the Assembly accounts, seized the Speaker’s vehicle, cut electricity supply to his house, locked him out of his house and office and seized his official car?
“What did Babatope say when Fayose suborned seven PDP members to illegally pass the budget, approve commissioners and special advisers, revoke the Local Government Law, Ekiti State Transport Management Agency and Social Security Scheme laws without recourse to the Assembly through revocation bills? The lawmakers queried.
They advised the PDP leader to leave Tinubu alone, saying fate had put the APC leader in a position to take Yoruba progressives to the national politics for the first time in history where true Awoists will be calling the shots along their fellow progressives from other parts of the country.
“We know that the ‘Young Shall Not Grow’ politicians in Afenifere group among whom Babatope is a loud voice are still dazed by the new dawn in Nigeria in which Tinubu played a foremost role.
“But leaders like Babatope should note that not all men are made for the great feat attained by the Jagaban. Tinubu phobia should not make our leaders blind to the current dangers posed by Fayose to the growth of democracy in Nigeria and we advise Babatope to let reason rule his thoughts above his narrow political interest in the resolution of political crises anywhere they rear their heads in our country.
“It is quite unfortunate that a supposed progressive elder statesman in the twilight of his political career threw away all he has attained as a progressive and find himself in the midst of wolves whom he has fought all his life for a narrow immediate need,” statement concluded.