Former Ekiti State Deputy Governor, Dr. Sikiru Lawal has declared that the 2018 governorship poll will be tough.
He, however, exhumed confidence that the Peoples Democratic Party(PDP) will be victorious in the poll.
Lawal, a governorship aspirant on the platform of the PDP, said his party will be approaching the poll banking on the popularity and sterling performances of the incumbent governor and leader of the party in the state, Mr Ayodele Fayose.
Speaking with newsmen in Ado Ekiti on Saturday, Lawal said his party had executed landmark people-oriented programmes initiated by Governor Fayose in the last two years, saying this had endeared the party to the people.
Lawal, who asked the All Progressives Congress (APC) to forget Ekiti, said the ruling party will be disappointed if it anticipated the repeat of Ondo scenario in the state.
The Ex-Deputy Governor described the four years of former Governor Kayode Fayemi as a colossal setback to the progress and economic prowess of the State.
“Ekiti is a politically conscious state and the governorship election will be tough. But let me assure you, we are winning with wide margin.
How do you expect APC that left over N76 billion debt burden on us to win election?
“Before the advent of President Muhammadu Buhari’s government, a litre of petrol was N87 and is now sold for N145. Prices of food items had gone up in three folds and our naira is being ranked the worst in Africa is terms of exchange rates with a dollar which now stands at N450 per dollar contrary to N215 per dollar under Ex-President Goodluck Jonathan.
“We are approaching this election on a popular goodwill the PDP and administration of Ayo Fayose have built with the people.
“Governor Fayose has dualised major roads in about six towns and he is currently building a flyover and new Oja Oba in Ado Ekiti. No matter what the APC does, they will lose this election because they have nothing to campaign with in Ekiti”.
He said he stood a good chance to emerge the PDP’s candidate owing to his pedigree as a former number two man and loyal party man, who had always stood by the party during precarious times.
Lawal also assured that the APC will be dazed in the impending poll, if it expects the repeat of Ondo scenario in the election.
“Well, the PDP lost in Ondo due to technical and tactical errors. The enemies within were used to scatter us and Governor Rotimi Akeredolu of the APC won.
“But Ekiti is going to be a different ballgame. In terms of religion and ethnicity, Ekiti is predominantly homogenous unlike Ondo State.
“Whoever the people wanted as the governor since 1999 had always emerged through the popular will of the people and if you check properly, the PDP is popular to the grassroots in Ekiti.
“The APC is only popular in witch-hunting of opposition and on the pages of newspapers through occasional statements it used to issue through its State Publicity Secretary, Hon Taiwo Olatunbosun. The APC poses no threat as far as we are concerned “.
Lawal assured that the factional crisis rocking the party will be resolved soon, commending former President Goodluck Jonathan for starting a process of mediation between Ali Modu Sheriff and Ahmed Makarfi’s factions.