Hon Israel Ajibola Famurewa, candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) for the Osun East senatorial district, has given a hint that Otunba Iyiola Omisore, candidate of the Social Democratic Party in the 2018 Osun governorship election is now in APC camp.
He said that legislative experience and zoning considerations between Ijesha land and Ife were responsible for his emergence as flag bearer for the 2019 polls.
The two-term member of the house of representatives from Atakumosa East/West and Ilesha West/East federal constituency of the state also urged his constituents to support him, assuring that he would surpass their expectations.
He said this in an exclusive interview with DAILY INDEPENDENT correspondent.
He was asked: ‘How were you able to outdo other interests and opponents to emerge candidate for the senatorial seat, bearing in mind the rumoured agreement between your party and senator Omisore?’
He answered: “Thank you very much. Really before the coalition with the SDP, in our party the APC, I think we were about 5 aspirants. The incumbent senator, there’s one gentleman from the north, another person from Ife axis and my humble self – the four of us.
“Now after coalition, there was an arrangement between the party leadership at national level with a leader in the SDP camp. But unfortunately and fortunately, our party leadership at the state level wasn’t part of this arrangement.
“And looking at the history of this senatorial district in the last 20 years of this dispensation, the Ife axis has been occupying this seat for almost 16 years now, while Ijesha land did only 4 years. That was when senator Akinfeyinwa was there between 1999 and 2003.
“And looking at the district, in Ijesha axis, we have 6 local governments while Ife has 4 local governments. So our people have been clamouring that it’s time for the senatorial seat to come to Ijesha land. So by virtue of that understanding within my party, all other aspirants from Ife axis had their aspirations curtailed leaving the battle squarely on the lap of Ijesha people. And coming to Ijesha itself, they actually needed somebody with pedigree of institutional memory which makes me more suitable. So that gave me an advantage over other aspirants in the sense that I’ve been in the national assembly for almost 8 years.
“On the other hand, the issue regarding the arrangement between the SDP chieftain, Senator Iyiola Omisore and our party’s national leadership, we’ve been able to settle that one as well. That issue has been resolved. But on the whole, my experience in the parliament gave me edge over others from our side.”