By Olamiposi Ishola
Less than 6 weeks to the Presidential and National Assembly election political parties and their gladiators have begun strategies at canvassing for votes in the February 16 polls.
Oyo State, the political capital of the Western States houses three senatorial districts and 14 Federal Constituencies with over two and half million voters deciding the fate of all candidates in the poll.
It is crystal clear that anybody without permanent voter cards (PVC) will not be able to vote during the elections while issues of using incident form (what is incident form)is still a subject of controversy.
For the purpose of this discussion, this report will focus on the chances of some candidates to clinch the seats being contested for as well as strong and weak points of the candidates.
Let’s commence the analysis with Oyo Central Senatorial District.
Oyo Central Senatorial District
Oyo Central Senatorial District comprises 5 Local Government areas in Ibadan less city namely, Akinyele, Lagelu Egbeda, Ona-Ara and Oluyole Local Government areas, while the remaining council areas are, Afijo, Oyo East, Oyo West, Atiba, Ogo Oluwa and Surulere making 11 Local Government areas in the district.
Unlike 2015 where few Political Parties showed interest in the polls, now more than 30 Political Parties are jostling to be members of both red and green carpet chambers of the National Assembly under the platform of their respective political parties.
Oyo Central Senatorial Districts, A former Senate leader in the 6th Assembly and former Governorship candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party is now the candidate of the ruling All Progressives Congress in February 16 polls.
Senator Teslim Folarin needs no introduction in the Oyo political system having served the district twice between 2003 to 2011 and is familiar with the political terrain of Oyo Central Senatorial candidate.
Senator Teslim Kolawole Folarin is currently under the shed of the ruling APC with a formidable structure on ground with political mobiliser at various ward and Local Government levels.
Aside from Party structure the chairmen in local governments and local council development areas couple with defections of political bigwigs from opposition parties into the progressive fold may constitute a great advantage
Also Presidential and National Assembly elections will be carried out accordingly while the support of Buhari/Osinbajo may constitute a great advantage for TKF just like in 2015 elections.
Apart from his stronghold, the Ona Ara born politician may encounter some challenges especially his ability to facilitate more meaningful projects to the districts during his 8 years at the Senate.
Another factor that may be a stumbling block for TKF is the emergence of Senator Monsurat Sunmonu and Chief Bisi Ilaka of African Democratic Congress (ADC) and Peoples Democratic Party(PDP) respectively. These candidates are from Oyo zone and are joined with Hon Temitope Olatoye Sugar of African Democratic Party ADP from the Ibadan less city Zone and some other notable candidates.
It is a major task for APC and TKF team to ensure the victory of Senator Teslim Folarin in his third term bid into the upper legislative chamber of the National Assembly
Anfani for All ???????
Chief Lukman Oyebisi Ilaka the Ladilu of Oyo town is the Senatorial candidate of PDP and is not a novice in the political game of the state having contested in 2011 and 2015 under Accord Party but defected to PDP with his former leader, High Chief Rashidi Ladoja.
The Oyo born politician decided to stay in PDP after his former leader defected to ADC and later Zenith Labour Party
Chief Ilaka is aiming for victory now just like any other candidates but adopted a new strategy and campaign team.
Chief Bisi Ilaka’s strength is his new political party PDP especially with Atiku Abubakar as Presidential Candidate of the PDP which is an added advantage.
The Ilaka existing political structure since 2010 can be easily erased if he does not work on loopholes before the polls.
Both Chief Bisi Ilaka and Senator Monsurat Sunmonu hail from Oyo Zone and will likely share the votes from the Zone and will, therefore, have to depend on the votes from Ibadan less city Zone where Hon Temitope Sugar and Senator Teslim come from.
To be continued…
This Opinion piece first appeared on Bcos.tv