- Governor Akeredolu may face stiff opposition during the forthcoming election in Ondo
- INEC is conducting governorship election in the state on October 10
- The PDP and the ZLP are planning to form an alliance to face Akeredolu at the poll
The political intrigues ahead of the Ondo state governorship election have continued to gather momentum as political actors in the sunshine state renew their strategies to be victorious on Saturday, October 10.
The Nation reports that in a grand plan to wrestle power from the incumbent governor of the state, Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, the candidate of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Eyitayo Jegede, and his Zenith Labour Party (ZLP) counterpart and deputy governor, Agboola Ajayi, are planning to form a working alliance to win the election.
Legit.ng gathered that Ajayi, who defected from the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) and contested PDP primary, was defeated by Jegede in Akure, the state capital.
After his defeat, the deputy governor had wanted to be Jegede's running mate but the senior lawyer resisted pressure from top party leaders to allow Ajayi pair with him.
The newspaper reported that the belief in the camp of Jegede was that Ajayi might exhibit the same tendency that led to a crisis of confidence between him and his boss, Akeredolu.
Ajayi later defected to Zenith Labour Party (ZLP), which, to many observers, lacks the formidable structure required for a rigorous governorship race.
According to the report, a source said many associates of Ajayi are uncomfortable with the profile of the weak party, led by former governor Olusegun Mimiko, and its chances at the polls.
It was gathered that a secret committee set up by the PDP national leadership to firm up details of the arrangement would turn in its interim report before the end of the week.
The development was said to have followed the outcome of the PDP governorship campaign launch, which was attended by only two serving PDP governors.
A member of the State Working Committee (SWC) of the PDP in Ondo state was quoted to have said the party was worried about the attitude of the PDP governors towards the standard-bearer.
“Events of the last five days have been a source of worry to all of us in the party. This worry is not only in PDP but also in ZLP where it is feared that there are serious financial hiccups.
“For now, Ajayi and Jegede have realised that they have to put ego aside and face the common enemy. They are already talking, having realised that they will fail woefully, if they go into the election divided, against Akeredolu, the candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), without forming an alliance.
“So, the plan is to harmonise these varied advantages to form a common front against the APC; but it will all become clearer by the end of the week by the time the secret committee turns in its report. Although Jegede may be the one to benefit eventually, Ajayi is expected to hold the fort in Ondo South because he is strong there," the source noted.
The newspaper also noted that the source said it would be difficult for the PDP to win a local government in Ondo North senatorial district where Akeredolu hails from, adding that the people from the district were desirous of completing the eight years.
“The southern district is known to be the home of PDP, but since the defection of Ajayi to ZLP, many PDP leaders like former speaker Jumoke Akindele, Mike Omogbehin and Oboli Ogunwa are now ZLP members. The only way for Jegede to win this election is to accept whatever demands Ajayi may put on the table,” the source said.
Meanwhile, Legit.ng had previously reported that Primate Elijah Ayodele predicted that Governor Akeredolu would be betrayed by some members of the APC in the forthcoming guber election.
It was reported that the INRI Spiritual Evangelical Ministry founder made the prediction in Lagos in an exclusive interview with Legit TV.
Ayodele stated that the Akeredolu would face a big hurdle as some people in APC would throw their weight behind Ajayi.
I will conduct free and fair primaries in Ondo - Yahaya Bello | - on Legit TV