Ondo APC Primary: 4 aspirants reject Ododo, demand fresh exercise

Adebisi Aikulola
Adebisi Aikulola
Wale Akinterinwa addressing journalists

Four out of the 16 aspirants jostling for the governorship ticket of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the ongoing primary have demanded the cancellation of the ongoing exercise.

The aggrieved governorship aspirants; Wale Akinterinwa, Olusola Oke, Olugbenga Edema, and Dayo Faduyile alleged the seven-man committee overseeing the primary, headed by Kogi Governor Ahmed Usman Ododo, of perpetrating fraud in the ongoing exercise.

They asked the embattled national chairman of the party, Abdullahi Umar Ganduje, to remove Ododo or cancel the ongoing exercise.

The aggrieved aspirants said they no longer trust the ability of the Kogi governor to conduct a credible and transparent exercise in the ongoing primary.

Speaking to journalists in Akure, the aggrieved governorship aspirants, led by Olugbenga Edema, warned that the action of the committee, if not properly handled, might affect the outcome of the primary governorship poll slated for November 16.

He alleged that the committee headed by Ododo refused to send materials meant for the primary at his “Mahin Ward II” in Ilaje local government, saying the exercise was being shielded to favour an unnamed aspirant in the contest.

“Unfortunately, the returning officers and electoral officers of my ward, Mahin Ward II, in Ilaje local government, are here and unable to collect any material.

“What we are asking for is a credible election. So, we are asking the leadership of the party to look into this. If they’re not ready for this election, they should postpone it and the right thing should be done,” Mr Edema added.

Also speaking, Wale Akinterinwa called for the immediate replacement of Ododo overseeing the primary exercise, noting that he was not ready to accept the outcome of the primary if the Kogi governor continued to take charge of the primary.

“For APC to bring Ododo to Ondo State is a low for our party and state, and our position is that no primary election has taken place, no election material has left here, and we are saying that the leadership of the party should do the needful by sending another neutral person, just like they did in Edo State, to come and conduct another primary election where the good people of Ondo State will freely exercise their franchise to pick their candidate.

“If the leadership of the party fails to do the needful, then there is a way we will react, and we are going to react accordingly. If any result is announced, we are telling the leadership of the party, including President Bola Tinubu, that no election took place in Ondo State, and no materials were distributed for us to pick our preferred candidate,” he said.

On his part, Olusola Oke said he did not get the materials for the primary in the south and north senatorial districts of the state.

Oke, who was represented by one of his aides, Rotimi Ogunleye, said Ododo must follow the guidelines released by the national leadership of the party. “The truth of the matter is that there were no materials sent out,” he said.

When contacted for reactions, Ododo told our correspondent that the complaints of the aggrieved aspirants were all noted by the committee.

“Although, we have sent out the materials for distribution as early as possible this morning to Ondo north and south,. But their complaints are well noted, and the committee will look into it,” he said.

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