On June 18 the people of Ekiti state will elect the successor of the incumbent governor, Dr Kayode Fayemi.
Whoever emerges in the election will be Ekiti’s 8th governor since 1999.
Since the return to democratic rule in 1999, no party has won the governorship election back-to-back in the state. This defines the sophistication of Ekiti voters who, most of the time vote without bias toward political parties.
According to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), 16 political parties with their candidates will be participating in the election. Of the 16 candidates, analysis by SymfoniNews shows only four have gained popularity among the electorates. They are; Biodun Oyebanji, Debo Ajayi, Bisi Kolawole and former governor Segun Oni.
Biodun Oyebanji (APC)
He is a 54-year-old politician with little grassroots support. But Oyebanji is leaning on the fortunes of his party as the incumbent and his former boss, Governor Kayode Fayemi. This makes him the candidate to beat in the June 18 election due to many obvious factors working in his favour.
He was immediate past secretary to the state government and has had the privilege of serving under the two governors so far produced by the progressives bloc in the state.
Segun Oni (SDP)
Mr Oni was a former governor of Ekiti state. He ruled the state between 2007 and 2010. He hopes to return to the government house after 12 years.
There is no denying the fact that the former governor enjoys high goodwill among the people of the state due to his exploits across critical sectors when he was in the saddle. He used to be a member of the All Progressives Congress but left the faty after losing the ticket to Oyebanji.
Debo Ajayi (YPP)
He was the Commissioner for Budget and Economic Planning during Fayemi’s first term between 2010 and 2014.
He first aspired to be Governor of Ekiti under the APC but also lost out to Oyebanji. He is still well known within the APC fold.
Ajayi is a 62-year-old Emure-born Ekiti man. He is an expert in finance and administration which has taken him to several countries in the Middle East, Asia and Africa.
Bisi Kolawole (PDP)
The 64-year-old candidate of the PDP is arguably one of the most experienced politicians in the race.
As a former House of Assembly member, commissioner and party chairman, Kolawole, from Efon-Ekiti, is enjoying the full backing of former Governor Ayodele Fayose. The former Governor is popular among the voting population.
He is seen to be a major contender in the race that many believe is between him and his counterpart in the APC.