Senator Smart Adeyemi (Kogi West) has indicated that despite Governor Yahaya Bello’s opposition to his return to the Senate, he has no regret in supporting his presidential bid.
Bello contested the All Progressives Congress (APC) presidential ticket for the 2023 general election but lost to Bola Tinubu.
Adeyemi, on his part, lost his bid to retain his seat in the Senate to Sunday Karimi at the APC primary held on May 28, 2022, in Kabba.
Karimi scored 288 votes while Muyiwa Aina came second with 73 votes. Adeyemi polled 43, while the only woman in the race, Doyin Eshanumi, scored one vote.
While alleging irregularities at the primary, Adeyemi said he participated in the primary against the advice of the state’s APC chairman, Abdullahi Bello, who, he said, asked him to step down and work fully for Bello’s presidential bid.
He said a meeting called by the state’s party chairman at the instance of the governor to pressure him to withdraw from the race was deadlocked, as he insisted on going ahead.
“The condition for my stepping aside was to take on a position, Chief of Staff, which was technocratic in nature when my governor eventually emerges as President, and this did not align with my personal goals as a journalist and a crusader for the common man.
“I immediately informed Abdullahi, unambiguously, that my training as a journalist would not permit me to aspire to this role and, as such, there was the need to fine-tune things to accommodate everyone,” Adeyemi explained.