The pioneer chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Ondo State, Isaac Kekemeke has joined the October 10 governorship race, saying he has the pedigree, antecedent and experience to transform the state and turn it into an Eldorado for the benefit of the people.
Kekemeke, who built the party before it became the ruling party in 2016, has vowed to unseat Governor Rotimi Akeredolu. He said the incumbent Governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu has not done his best for the state.
Kekemeke who is the pioneer Chairman of National Examination Council (NECO) spoke at a press conference in Akure, the state capital, and described himself as a grassroots politician that had served in different capacities for over two decades without sojourning outside the state for a moment.
The former Commissioner for Works and Secretary to the State Government (SSG) under the late Agagu’s administration said he has another strategy to spread the dividends of democracy to the doorsteps of the people, as opposed to the seclusive administration of Akeredolu.
He said his decision to contest the election was borne out of his desire to serve the people. He also debunked insinuations that he was not a serious contender and that detractors are peddling the allegation that his ambition was mainly to serve as deputy governor to demarket him.
Kekemeke, a lawyer, declared that he was prepared to take over the reins of government from Governor Akeredolu, adding that he has no plan to serve as deputy to either Akeredolu or any other person.
“I laboured more than any other individual to build this party during trenches and together with some stakeholders we were able to develop the party. I am not a small person in politics and I have all it takes to lead the state.
“I had openly told the incumbent Deputy Governor, Agboola Ajayi that I am not interested in his office and I mean it. I am interested in the office his boss (Akeredolu) is presently occupying and by the grace of God I shall get there.”
Kekemeke said efforts were on by the leadership of the APC at both the national and state levels to reconcile all aggrieved members.
Already, the APC in Ondo State is polarized into two factions with Akeredolu leading a faction, while a former Deputy Governor, Alli Olanusi leads the faction known as the Unity Forum
However, Kekemeke said the national leadership of the party through its reconciliatory committee headed by former Osun State Governor, Chief Bisi Akande will work for the unity of the party before the governorship poll.
The former commissioner is presently the Secretary of the Advisory Council, while Chief Pius Akinyelure is to serve as its chairman with the aim of harmonising the party ahead of the primary and election proper on October 10.
He said: “I don’t belong to any faction in the party; my conviction is to have a formidable APC like it was in 2015 when we won 54 per cent votes for President Muhammadu Buhari, even while still in opposition.”
Kekemeke appealed to all aggrieved members to forget the past and work for the future of the party, especially ahead of the forthcoming governorship election.
The former chairman boasted that the APC is the party to beat and that no other one can match the ruling party.