By Victor Ernest
Governor Ayodele Fayose of Ekiti state has disclosed how former President Olusegun Obasanjo denied current chairman of Peoples Democratic Party, Ahmed Makarfi, from becoming the party’s candidate in the 2007 presidential election.
According to the governor, a selection committee which he headed chose the former Kaduna state governor but Obasanjo rejected the nomination because of Makarfi’s ”smartness”.
”I remember the committee was made up of Governors Danjuma Goje, Ahmed Makarfi, Bukola Saraki, James lbori,” the governor stated this in an interview with The Interview Magazine.
He said: ”that position of Presidential Selection Committee that I headed was set up by all PDP governors. Initially, they wanted Dr. Olusegun Agagu. Then, the majority insisted that they wanted Fayose. So, since the majority wanted me, Baba [Olusegun Obasanjo] invited me to Ota and encouraged me to go ahead.
”So, as a loyal Obasanjo boy then, I went to Obasanjo then and told him that this committee that was set up, everybody seemed to prefer Makarfi except me and one other person and we were in the minority.
”Five out of seven governors wanted Makarfi. Then Obasanjo pointedly told me that Markafi was too smart and would not be easily controlled by him and, therefore, I must ensure that Makarfi did not emerge the presidential candidate. He mandated me to be briefing him often about the way things were going.
Third term bid
On Obasanjo’s third term bid, the governor alleged that the former president paid the principal officers of the National Assembly N100 million each in 2006, while the rest of the lawmakers were paid N50 million each for the plan.
He alleged that Obasanjo knew about the ill-health of late President Umaru Yar’Adua before he was elected as PDP’s candidate.
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