POPULAR Yoruba actor turned politician, Hon. Rotimi Mikhail Makinde, who lost his re-election bid into the House of Representatives in the Saturday, March 28, 2015 presidential and National Assembly elections has said he’s only shocked but not sad about the conduct and outcome of the elections. He, however, added he had handed over everything concerning the defeat to his party.
Speaking with ENCOMIUM Weekly on Thursday, April 9, 2015, the businessman cum politician expressed dissatisfaction about the results of the elections in his constituency, insisting the whole exercise was marred by gross malpractices and violence orchestrated by the opposition party in the state.
“The conduct and outcome of the elections were not acceptable to me, and I have made my stance known clearly on that. Everybody in the area knew how the election went. I am sure no one will tell you the elections were not rigged in favour of PDP apart from the violence that almost truncated the exercise. Every chance the PDP had to manipulate the elections was massively utilized against the wish of the majority at the polling booths.
“There was a breakdown of law and order when hoodlums loyal to PDP stormed the area. There was violence all over the place, and in the process, a man was shot dead by PDP supporters. Vehicles were vandalized, houses burnt. PDP thugs hijacked the whole election. They were at every polling unit, distributing money to the voters openly.
“All these have been reported by many media houses, print and non-print alike. Even social media were not left out. So, there is nothing for me to add or subtract from what actually happened that day.
“Some people were forced to vote against their conscience when they saw money. Left to me, I could have won based on my performance in the area if the elections were to be free and fair.
“But don’t forget I didn’t only contest with PDP candidate, Albert Adeogun, I also contested with the party’s heavy weight in the constituency, including Senator Iyiola Omisore, Femi Fani Kayode, Professor Wale Ladipo, PDP’s National Secretary and others. All these people have all the forces of intimidation and harassment at their disposal. And they really utilized them against me and to the benefit of their candidate. I fought the battle alone, hoping my performances would speak for me, not knowing the election won’t be free and fair.”
Asked what’s likely to be his next line of action concerning his loss at the poll, he reacted, “I am a party product. Whatever step that will be taken concerning the matter will be decided by the party that gave me the platform to contest the election. But just as I said, I am not sad but shocked.”
Hon. Makinde veered into politics in 2010 and contested for House of Representatives seat of Ife Federal Constituency on the platform of the then Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) in 2011, which he emerged victorious.
But this time around, the famous film maker cum hotelier’s bid to return to the House for the second term failed as he lost out to his opponent and former lawmaker, Albert Adeogun of PDP.
– TADE ASIFAT