Ondo PDP guber aspirants reject zoning to central district

By Samuel Faleye, Akure

Governorship aspirants and some leaders in the Ondo State chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) from the northern senatorial district of the state have rejected alleged plans by Governor Olusegun Mimiko to pick the party candidate from the Central senatorial district. The aggrieved aspirants and stakeholders allegedly said Mimiko had earlier met them in a political meeting which was also attended by the state and local government executive members that he had endorsed an aspirant from the central senatorial district as the PDP candidate. 

The aspirant allegedly endorsed by Mimiko is the current Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice, Mr. Eyitayo Jegede SAN who is an indigene of Akure, the state capital is also from the same Central senatorial district with the incumbent governor. 

The aspirants urged Mimiko and other leaders of the party promoting the central senatorial district agenda to align with the rotational/zoning principle of the party. 

In a communique issued and assigned by the aspirants, Senator Remi Okunrinboye, Rt. Hon. Dr. Bakkita Bello, Bamiduro Dada, Prince Nekan Olateru-Olagbegi, Dare Emiola, Hon. Gbenga Elegbeleye, Dayo Fadahunsi, Yekini Olanipekun among others revealed that there was a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) reached by the state leadership of the party towards the October 20, 2012. 

They noted that the agreement is to rotate the picking of the party candidate among the north, central senatorial district, adding that it is the turn of the north to produce the party candidate since the last governorship election in 2012. 

The MOU was signed by late Governor Olusegun Agagu, late Dr. Olaiya Oni, Saka Lawal, Otunba Fashawe now in All Progressives Congress (APC), Victor Olabimtan now in APC, Olusola Oke now in APC, Dr. Gbankinro among others. 

The communique read, “consequent upon the recent development in our great party, in Ondo State, where the Governor Mimiko at a meeting with the state and local government official and delegates of the party across the state, declared his endorsement of an aspirant from the central senatorial district as the PDP gubernatorial candidate for the November 26, 2016 election. 

“This position of Mr. Governor is considered a miscalculation that will further put Ondo North Senatorial District at a serious political disadvantage, putting the state PDP at a loss and laying bad precedence in the state. 

“That all the undersigned leader align their position with the rotational/zoning principle of our party. This is in accordance with the MOU reached by the state leadership of the party towards the October 20, 2012 election, that the governorship of the state be rotated amongst the three senatorial districts. 

“Eventually, that referred election was won by Mimiko for a second term from the central, following a six year governorship of late Agagu from the southern senatorial district. 

“Based on first resolution above, the leadership of the north senatorial district should immediately enter into workable agreement and alignment with the southern and central senatorial districts to ensure the goal of rotation is achieved for equity, fairness and justice in furtherance of peace and political stability of our state. 

“It is further agreed that an appeal be made to the national and state leadership of our great party to concede the governorship slot of 2017-2021 to Ondo north senatorial district as demonstration of fairness, equity and justice that the state is known for and keeping to the MOU.

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