Oyo SDP gov candidate trades mandate for money, chairman alleges

The Chairman of the Social Democratic Party in Oyo State, Michael Okunlade, on Wednesday, alleged that the governorship candidate of the party, Michael Lana, traded his mandate with the state Governor, Seyi Makinde, ahead of Saturday’s election.

It was reported that Lana stepped down from the race on Tuesday to endorse Makinde of the Peoples Democratic Party.

Okunlade, who made this allegation in a telephone interview in Ibadan, also tongue-lashed Lana for lack of integrity. He further alleged that he stepped down for Makinde, having been paid and promised an appointment after the election.

He said, “Does he (Lana) know what he is doing? He didn’t pay for a nomination form. We only packaged him. He didn’t have any input or contribution to the party. He is just a noise maker. How many of them reached that compromise to endorse Makinde? That’s not true. Lana is a rogue who contributed nothing to the party.

“Lana is just for money. If you watched all his debates either on television or radio stations, he was totally against Makinde’s policies. But because of money, he went to PDP. Lana can trade anything for money. He lacks integrity. Lana can trade his children for money.

“He knows that Makinde is giving money now. They know that he is the only person who can give out money. He knows that Makinde doesn’t deserve it but because of money and greed, he went there.”

Okunlade, while responding to the allegation that the party was not carrying him along before taking some decisions, said, “Yes, because he doesn’t have any substance. That’s the reason.

“We didn’t see him as our candidate in SDP. We only packaged him. Somebody who cannot deliver his ward. He said he defected with some honourables or candidates, who are those honourables or candidates? Some of those who could not get 100 votes in the last election in their respective local governments.

“Lana cannot even win if he contests councillorship in his local government. Go and check his records at the law court, he has never won a single case but he would come out and be making noise.”

The party chairman said most of the candidates who reached a compromise with him to work for Makinde did not pay a dime for the nomination form.

He explained, “They wanted to reap from where they did not sow. And when you see somebody like Lana, it’s better to avoid him. Lana is not a gubernatorial candidate before. We were only packaging him. Let him show you the receipt for the payment. He doesn’t have any structure. I gave tickets to those referring as candidates. He went to the People’s Democratic Party to collect money.

“We are symbols of the party. Our decision and position remain Teslim Folarin for governor. Lana did not come out to vote in the last election. Let him show us a picture of where he cast his vote. We have pictures of all other governorship candidates where they voted. He is a noise maker.

“Somebody who has been consistently telling the whole state that Makinde policies are anti-people. Somebody who opposed Makinde on local governments. Somebody who opposed Makinde on Parks Management System. Somebody who opposed Makinde on a lot of things but because of money, he said he had stepped down,” he said.

Reacting to the allegation in a telephone interview, Lana maintained that he was not carried along when the party collapsed the structure for Folarin.

He said, “I am not like him. I am the one that has the mandate. Did he talk to me before he went on air to announce that they have collapsed their structures for Folarin? Is it me that collapsed the structure for Folarin? So, who is selling the party? If they are symbols of the party, did they talk to me that they have already collapsed the structure for APC? Did they carry any one of us along? Did they talk to any House of Assembly candidates? Did they talk to any local government chairman? So, who traded who?

On the allegation that he didn’t pay for the nomination form, Lana said, “Let him bring his account number and state how much we’ve been paying into his account.”

On not voting at the last election, the SDP governorship candidate said, “That’s their problem. Did they know my polling unit? That’s his own problem. Did he leave his polling unit and check mine?

“I voted in South West, Ward 10 which is Iyaganku GRA. So, how can he say that? he asked.

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