Ondo APC Primary: Ganduje Begs Jimoh Ibrahim, Olusola Oke, Others to Work With Aiyedatiwa

The National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress on Thursday appealed to aggrieved aspirants who participated in Saturday’s primary election in Ondo State to back Governor Lucky Aiyedatiwa ahead of the November 16 governorship poll.

He also told the aspirants how he lost his first attempt at the Kano governorship and said he could not call them aspirants who lost but that they were “aspirants that will be successful tomorrow.”

Ayiedatiwa was declared the winner by Governor Usman Ododo-led Primary Election Committee on Sunday after the poll conducted in all the 18 local government areas of the state.

But the result was contested over allegations of irregularities and violence in some polling units.

Consequently, the senator representing Ondo South Senatorial District, Senator Jimoh Ibrahim, and five other aspirants filed petitions challenging Aiyedatiwa’s victory.

Others were Olusola Oke, Folakemi Omogoroye, Olugbenga Edema, Jimi Odimayo, and Wale Akinterinwa.

They also demanded the cancellation of the governorship primary and the conduct of a fresh primary.

Addressing the aspirants at the party secretariat in Abuja on Thursday, Ganduje begged the aspirants to bury the hatchet and work together with Aiyedatiwa.

He said, “I have to thank you for honouring our invitation in the shortest time available and also considering the emotional distress as a result of the primary that was conducted a few days ago. Since we are all democrats, there are bound to be ups and downs in politics. The purpose of this meeting is to appeal. It is not to dwell on what has happened and what has not. What is correct and what is incorrect? If we dwell on that, it will lead to what we can call too much analysis leads to paralysis.

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“If we are to dwell on that, there are professors, lawyers, and learned members among us. Some are engineers, and even the two genders have been accommodated. We who are less educated, the controversy will not cover us considering the galaxy of politicians who are here. Our own is to appeal to you. We in the party here are just insiders and outsiders. We are saying this because it is our party. It is also the ruling party in Ondo State and we are managers of the party in Nigeria. So we are an interested party, even if it is a local election.

“We are outsiders because this state belongs to you. This party also belongs to you. I am sure your prayer is for our party to remain the ruling party in your state. I think that should be the focal point for all of you. Our party should remain the ruling party in Ondo State.

“I recalled when I contested the Kano governorship election in 1999. I lost. I couldn’t achieve the dream of becoming a governor until after 16 years. I was patient enough and kept on praying. Eventually, I became the governor after 16 years. So I cannot call you aspirants that lost. You are aspirants that will be successful tomorrow.”

Fourteen aspirants who participated in the primary election were present at the peace meeting.

The National Deputy Chairman of the APC (South West), Isaacs Kekemeke, and Akinterinwa were however absent.

Source: Punch

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