…. You remain my deputy – Bello
The running mate to the late Abubakar Audu, the APC candidate in the November 21 governorship election and deputy governor-elect James Abiodun Faleke, yesterday insisted that he would not be deputy to the governor-elect, Yahaya Bello.
Bello, who replaced the late Audu, for last Saturday’s supplementary election held in 91 polling units, was in the early hours of yesterday declared winner of the polls by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).
Basking in the euphoria of victory, Bello explained his acceptance to replace Audu as an act of obedience to party supremacy. He insisted that Falake remained his deputy since his position as running mate was not affected.
Bello who spoke to reporters in reaction to his victory as the winner of the supplementary election said Faleke remained the deputy-governor elect as the position was never vacant.
His words: “The former candidate of the party died. INEC requested the party to substitute, and I was chosen to fill the gap. The space of the running mate was never vacant. So if I respond to run on that platform, I don’t think I have any choice but to respect the decision of the party.”
Bello who was dressed in an all white traditional garb called agbada said his reaction to the results was that of ecstasy. However, he said the jubilation was low-keyed because of the death of Abubakar Audu who he described as their great leader.
“That somebody is a member of a party does not mean that you cannot fight for your rights, if they are trampled upon. The result of Saturday’s supplementary election has further confirmed my earlier position that we won the election of Saturday November 21st. My position is that I have appealed the case and nobody can force me to be deputy governor-elect to Yahaya Bello.
“I have taken the position that I am the winner of the election and even the election declared yesterday with the total votes cast which was a little above 12, 000 has vindicated the Audu/ Faleke campaign organisation that they should have been declared winner in the first place and that there was no need for the supplementary election,” he said.