OrderPaperToday – Serving Senator representing Kwara south senatorial district, Rafiu Ibrahim is back into the race to regain his seat in 2019.
Senator Ibrahim was earlier replaced by the incumbent Governor of the state, Abdullfatah Ahmed to represent the senatorial district in the next assembly.
But soon after the concluded by-election in Ekiti/Oke Ero/lsin/Irepodun Federal Constituency on the 17th of November which saw the defeat of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), Governor Ahmed decided to relinquish his ticket.
Following his exit, Senator Ibrahim was given the ticket as he expressed appreciation to the duo of the Senate President, Bukola Saraki who is seen as a political lord in the state and his Governor.
According to a statement released by Senator Rafiu on his twitter account, Governor Ahmed’s withdrawal is not connected to ‘his failure’ to deliver his state for the PDP.
The statement read: “I wish to express my sincere appreciation to the National Leader of our great party and Senate President. Dr. Abubakar Bukola Saraki and Governor Abdulfatah Ahmed for granting the request of the leadership of Ibolo division of Kwara South that the senatorial ticket be retained in the axis.
“Ultimately, this was done in the interest of fairness and equity as both Ekiti and lgbomina of Kwara South have both produced senators who served two terms in the Senate. I also thank all the stakeholders within Kwara south and the State at large for their efforts and support likewise I extend my profound appreciation to my constituents, party members and advocates for their support and confidence in me. I will always be grateful to you all.
“The decision of Governor Ahmed to cede the senatorial ticket following the pleas by Ibolo elders is highly commendable and this has further affirmed his reputation as an advocate of tautness, equity and inclusion. This is indeed leadership by example.”
He explained further: “I think it is also important I clarify that Governor Ahmed‘s decision to relinquish the ticket has nothing to do with the November 17 by-election in Ekiti/Oke Ero/lsin/Irepodun Federal Constituency. The outcome of an election that was characterized by rigging. Harassment and intimidation of voters could not have led the governor to withdraw from the senatorial race.
“You will recall that last week on the floor of the Senate. I raised concerns about the conduct of the poll and the use of security operatives by the Federal Government and the All Progressives Congress (APC) to intimidate voters as well as harass members of the PDP.”
“It was on this basis the Senate directed Its Committee on Police and National Intelligence to investigate the matter. I have no doubt that the PDP would have won the election If It was conducted in a free, fair and credible manner.”
He thanked the PDP leaders in his senatorial district and the state as well as the people of Kwara State for their continued support.
“I am confident that with the support of Kwarans, our party will triumph in the 2019 general elections”, he added.