Intrigues, last-minute alignment as 11 aspirants contest Ondo APC governorship ticket today

Filed Under: news

On: July 20, 2020

Akeredolu and Oke


  • Aspirants, factions disagree over indirect primary
  • Focus on party’s victory – S’West APC

John Alechenu, Peter Dada and Abiodun Nejo

The All Progressives Congress candidate for the October 10 governorship election in Ondo State will emerge today (Monday) at a primary election that will be contested by the state Governor, Rotimi Akeredolu, and 10 other aspirants.

Ahead of the election, there were intrigues on Sunday as some aspirants engaged in last-minute talks aimed at forming an alliance against Akeredolu.

Besides Akeredolu,  other aspirants  are Chief Olusola Oke, Dr Segun Abraham, Mr Olaide Adelami, Bukola Adetula, Mrs Jumoke Anifowose, Ambassador Sola Iji, Mr Isaac Kekemeke, Jimi Odimayo, Mr Nathaniel Adojutelegan and Mr Awodeyi Akinsehinwa.

The party had last month disclosed that it would adopt indirect primary to pick its governorship candidate, but  11 aspirants in a memo they jointly signed  kicked  against it.

The Chairman of the Primary Committee and Kogi State Governor, Mr Yahaya Bello, on Friday turned down the request of the aspirants, saying they could not dictate to the party.

Aspirants  in last-minute alliance talks against Akeredolu

It was gathered that there might be last-minute alliance among the aspirants as several meetings were going on among the party leaders and the aspirants to reduce the number of aspirants so that most popular aspirant would get the ticket of the party.

The spokesperson for one of the aspirants,  Adelami;  Mr Rahaman Yusuf, confirmed that his boss had met with many party leaders.

On Sunday, it was learnt that many of the aspirants, who were active at the initial stage of the preparation for the primary, were said to have lost confidence in getting the desired victory at the primary following the alleged imposition of the indirect primary.

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An aide to one of the aspirants, on condition of anonymity,  informed one of our correspondents that his boss knew he had lost the primary already, alleging that the national secretariat of the party had concluded plans to give Akeredolu the ticket of the party.

Akerodolu to benefit from indirect primary

Also, there were indications on Sunday that  Akeredolu  would benefit from the indirect primary.

A top-ranking member of the party who, spoke on condition of  anonymity, said, “Most incumbent governors prefer the indirect mode because those who emerge as delegates are their loyalists.

“There are those we call automatic delegates and these include party members from the state who are former governors, former deputy governors, former speakers and deputy speakers, serving national and state Assembly members.”

Oke vows to challenge indirect primary

One of governorship aspirants, Chief Olusola Oke, who expressed his displeasure over the adoption of indirect primary, however, said he would participate in the primary but would challenge the process.

Aspirants yet to see delegates’ list, says  factional chairman

But the APC  factional chairman, Mr Henry Olatuja, said the indirect primary adopted by the party was against its constitution.

According to him, the insistence of the APC’s  National Caretaker Committee of the party  on  conducting  indirect primary in the state has further caused more crises in the party.

Olatuja said,  “We heard the Kogi State Governor, Yahaya Bell,  say the primary in Ondo State will be indirect, meaning it is a delegate election. As I am talking to you now, we have yet to have the list of delegates to use on Monday, even the contestants don’t have it.

However, the state Chairman of the party, Mr Ade Adetimehin, said there was no faction in the party and the was no case in the court .

S’West APC urges aspirants to focus on party’s victory in October

The South-West caucus of the APC on its part appealed to the 12 governorship aspirants to display maturity and harp more on issues that could unite the party, rather than those capable of causing unwarranted division.

The APC South-West Publicity Secretary, Karounwi Oladapo, in a release titled, “Press statement,”  urged the aspirants to look beyond the primaries to how the party would win the governorship election proper holding in October.

Oyedele steps down for Akeredolu

Few hours to the primary, an aspirant, Ife Oyedele on Sunday stepped down from the governorship race.

Speaking with journalists at the Government House, Akure, Oyedele, who is the Executive Director of the Niger Delta Power Holding Company of Nigeria , said he took the decision after the consultation with the national leaders of the party to work with  Akeredolu in the forthcoming election.

Meanwhile, less than 24 hours to the primary of party, the venue for the primary has been changed.

Initially, the primary was scheduled to hold in the 18 local government headquarters of the party in the state but it was gathered that the exercise would hold in three centers in Akure.

The party spokesman, Alex Kalejaiye,  confirmed the development.


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