Hours after election, new Ondo assembly speaker decamps to APC from PDP.

The newly-elected Speaker of the Ondo State House of Assembly, Bamidele Oleyelogun, representing Ifedore Constituency, has decamped to the All Progressives Congress, APC, from the People’s Democratic Party, PDP.

The News Agency of Nigeria reports that Mr. Oleyelogun was controversially voted as the new speaker of the Assembly after he polled nine out of 13 votes against Mr Olamide George, representing Akure-North, who got four votes.

PREMIUM TIMES reported how 13 other members of the 26-member Assembly were absent from the sitting and said they were not told the sitting would hold. The 13 have vowed to remain in the PDP and include Jumoke Akindele, the former speaker.

Mr. Oleyelogun, accompanied by some principal officers of the House, made the announcement at a news conference on Monday in Akure.

He added that he would be decamping officially with some other members on Tuesday, on the floor of the house.

“We are here today to signify our intention to join the ruling party, APC. The other ceremony will be done tomorrow (Tuesday).

“At the national level, they have factionalised our party. The same scenario is also at the state level. This declaration is for our followers and those we represent.

“We are ready to work with the executive without any problem, and all necessary things to be done are in place. Be rest assured that Governor Rotimi Akeredolu is ready to work and we are ready to support him,’’ he added.

Ogundeji Iroju, the newly-elected Deputy Speaker, representing Odigbo Constituency II, said people should not be surprised by their move to cross to the ruling party.

Mr. Iroju said it became imperative for them to cross to the ruling party because the PDP was in a serious mess.

He added that it was the APC that could deliver good governance to the people of the state.

The Secretary to the State Government, Ifedayo Abegunde, who received them on behalf of the state government, said he was happy they were increasing the party at the state level.

Mr. Abegunde said the more the members of the party in the state, the more the party would be growing in confidence, to deliver the electoral promises to the people.


Source: Premium Times

Akeredolu dissolves Boards and Parastatals in Ondo State

Governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, of Ondo State has approved the dissolution of all Boards and Parastatals in the state.

The Head of Service, Mr Toyin Akinkuotu, on Saturday in Akure, announced the immediate dissolution of the boards and parastatals.

Akinkuotu, through a statement, urged all chairmen, political appointees and non-career employees in all boards and parastatals in the state to hand over all government properties in their custody to the accounting officers in their respective offices.

He, however, said that statutory commissions whose tenure were specified in the 1999 Nigerian Constitution were exempted from the dissolution.


Source: NAN

Ondo governor, Akeredolu, freezes LG council accounts.

Ondo State Governor, Rotimi Akeredolu, has ordered the freezing of all bank accounts of local governments in the state.

He has also directed the suspension of the payments of salaries and allowances of the local council chairmen, councilors and political appointees.

PREMIUM TIMES gathered that councils were informed of the development on Thursday.

Chairman of the Ondo State chapter of the Association of Local Governments of Nigeria, (ALGON), Bayo Alarapon, confirmed the development.

Mr. Alarapon, who is the Chairman of the Akure South Local Government, said the council chairmen were yet to decide on what steps to take on the matter.

“We have not really gone into the matter, but we are already into it and whatever we decide later, we will let the world know,” he said.

All the chairmen and councilors of the 18 local councils are members of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, elected in an election held in April 2016.

The council officials have a high court judgment in their favour restraining the new governor from dissolving them with respect to their subsisting tenures.

Efforts to get a response from the office of the governor were unfruitful, because the newly-appointed Chief Press Secretary, Segun Ajiboye, was yet to fully assume duties as the governor’s spokesman.


Source: Premium Times

“I left N20 billion in state’s coffers for Akeredolu’s government” – Mimiko

The immediate past government in Ondo State led by Dr. Olusegun Mimiko said it left N20 billion in the state coffers, refuting allegations by the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) that it inherited N150 billion debt.

It said the claim by the APC spokesperson, Mr. Abayomi Adesanya, that the new government met a debt profile of N150b, “is a lie from the pit of hell.”

It advised the APC to face the business of governance instead of indulging in cheap blackmail that won’t justify its mandate. The Commissioner for Information in the last administration, Mr. Kayode Akinmade, reacting to the debt profile claim in Akure yesterday, said the Mimiko administration which did not enter into any contractual obligation to warrant any increase in the external debt inherited by it when it assumed office eight years ago, was able to reduce the debt profile to $49.9 million.

He said Adesanya is obviously intimidated by the performance record of the past government and will rather continue with his pre-election falsehood and lie-selling to seek attention, than live with the reality.

Akinmade explained that the foreign debt were overseas contracted obligations initiated by the two previous governments before the immediate past one.

He put the domestic debts incurred by the last administration at about N53 billion with salary arrears of about N20 billion, submitting however that the Mimiko-led government left over N20 billion in the state’s coffers for the APC government.


Source: The Guardian

Ondo Police Command Decorates 86 Newly Promoted Officers

The Ondo State Police Command has decorated 86 officers newly promoted from the rank of Assistant Superitendent to Deputy Superintendent of Police.

The Commissioner of Police In Ondo state, Hilda Ibifuro-Harrison, decorated the newly promoted officers in her office at the command headquarters in Akure, the state capital.

In her address, the CP advised the officers that the promotion should come with higher responsibility, more diligence and commitment to duties.

She equally urged them to always be on top of their job and shun any act that could bring shame to the Nigerian Police Force.

“To promote 86 officers in a command is a thing to be thankful to God almighty for because if you work, you get rewarded and the reward is promotion and that is why all these persons who were ASPs before today have now become DSPs.

“I’ve charged them to appreciate that when you are given a higher rank, it needs higher responsibility and it means more diligence to the performance of your duties.”

On fighting crime in the state, the CP noted that the Police have made some arrests in connection with the recent killings in Ondo town and the suspects have been charged to court while some arms and ammunition have been recovered from them.

“Crime fighting is the business of the police, stay on top of your job and never bring shame to the Nigerian police force. A few days back we recorded some killings in Ondo town and with the help of the people of the state, we have been able to make arrests and recover some arms and ammunition and the persons arrested have been charged to court.”

Mrs Harrison then used the opportunity to appeal to residents to synergise with the police to ensure that the society is free of crime and is safer for everyone.

The Police boss also sensitised the people of the state on the recent development  in which some hoodlums block the highways at night in the bid to rob innocent travelers.

She urged residents to notify the police of any individuals who get on the road at night to commit crime.

“We cannot do it alone we must synergise with all citizens of the state to ensure we all sleep with our two eyes closed and the society is safer for us.

“We will be equal to the task to ensure we put on our highways very effective security but if you notice persons who wake up at night to get on the road to commit crime, please, report to the police.”

Some of the newly decorated officers, Henry Akingboju, Christiana Adewole and Yemi Ojumu, expressed their gladness and thanked the Police Service Commission, the Inspector General of Police as well as the Commissioner of Police.

They promised to be more diligent in their duties to the Nigerian people.


Source: Channels TV

Unpaid salaries: Akeredolu appeals to striking Ondo health workers

The Governor of Ondo State, Rotimi Akeredolu, on Monday begged health workers who have been on an indefinite strike to return to work, as his government makes efforts to begin the payment of workers’ salaries.

He also set up a special committee, headed by the Accountant General of the state, Akindolire Laolu, to look into ways of liquidating the accumulated salaries of workers.

“I’m appealing to the doctors and health workers in the state who are currently on strike to please resume work,” he pleaded.

“Let them come back and we can now sit and have a discussion on the table through negotiations.”

Speaking to civil servants on Monday while resuming office, Mr. Akeredolu noted that the workers deserved their monthly wages.

He also promised that workers’ welfare would be a priority under his administration.

“I am aware of the agonies you (civil servants) are going through without being paid your salaries,” he said.

He, however, assured that he would ensure that civil servants got their salaries and arrears as and when due.

Mr. Akeredolu urged the striking health workers to return to work for the sake of patients at the government hospitals.


Source: Premium Times

I will deal with disloyal APC members who worked against the party – Rotimi Akeredolu

The new Governor of Ondo State, Rotimi Akeredolu, has revealed that some members of the All Progressives Congress, APC, in Ondo State, worked against the party during last November’s governorship election.

He said such disloyal members would not be condoned by his administration.

Mr. Akeredolu made this known at the inauguration dinner organised for him in Akure, the state capital.

He alleged that some chieftains of the APC in the state worked against the party during the last governorship election.

Mr. Akeredolu said such disloyal members, whom he did not name, should go and reapply if they still wanted to be members of the party.

The governor specifically accused a serving senator in the state of working against the APC in the last governorship election.

He berated the senator for going to buy a space in a newspaper to congratulate him after his victory.

Mr. Akeredolu, who did not mention the name of the senator, insisted that those who were involved in anti-party activities could not come through the back door.

“A Senator that won his seat under the platform of APC, chose to openly work for AD during the last governorship election, and later paid for congratulatory advert for me on pages of newspaper,” he said.

“It looks strange to me, this is someone that didn’t even call to congratulate me.

“Tell the senator he is not a member of APC; everyone that involved in anti-party activities can’t come back through the back door, they would have to go back to their various wards to re-apply for APC membership card and apologise openly, they should also do the needful.”

Although the governor did not mention the senator, he is believed to have been referring to Ajayi Borroffice.

Mr. Borroffice, representing Ondo North senatorial district, contested against Mr. Akeredolu at the APC primaries and lost.

He also contested the outcome of the primaries, and had refused to recognise Mr. Akeredolu’s candidature at the early stages of the crisis.

Despite reaching an understanding to sheath his sword, Mr. Borroffice stayed away from Mr. Akeredolu’s campaigns and was believed to have supported the candidate of the Alliance for Democracy, Olusola Oke.

The governor however, commended the Deputy Chairman of the APC, Ade Adetimehin, and some other chieftains of the party for their efforts towards ensuring that the APC won the election.

When reached to react to Mr. Akeredolu’s statement, Mr. Borroffice said he would not respond to such statements when his name was not explicitly stated.

“I am a senator of the federal republic of Nigeria, I cannot respond to statements where my name is not clearly stated, I am too big for that,” he said.

Also at a thanksgiving service held at the Cathedral Church of Saint Andrew Anglican Church, Owo on Sunday, Mr. Akeredolu promised not to disappoint the people of the state.

He said he would serve them better and record more success and achievements in the state.

In his sermon, the Archbishop of Ondo Province of Anglican Diocese, George Lasebikan, urged the governor to face his duties squarely and contentiously.

Mr. Lasebikan also appealed to him to take the payment of workers’ salaries as a priority.
“He should pay salaries; many of our people have not been paid, not only in Ondo State but in different parts of Nigeria. It is in East, North and every part of the country,” the bishop said.

“It is not good, a labourer is worthy of his wage and government needs to do something that the public will know that the government is taking care of them otherwise people will not respond to the politicians.

“I know recession has been a bad thing for the nation but there should be a way that workers are paid.”

Bola Tinubu in Ondo as Rotimi Akeredolu takes oath of office.

At exactly 11:34am on Friday, Rotimi Akeredolu, a senior advocate of Nigeria (SAN), took oath of office as the sixth executive governor of Ondo state.

Bola Tinubu, national leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC), was among the dignitaries that witnessed the occasion.

Senate President Bukola Saraki; Godwin Obaseki, governor of Edo state, Abiola Ajimobi, governor of Oyo state; Lai Mohammed, minister of information and culture, Bisi Akande, former governor of Osun state, also attended the event.

Earlier, Agbola Ajayi, also a legal practitioner, was sworn in as deputy governor.

In November, Akeredolu, candidate of the APC, defeated Eyitayo Jegede of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), in the state governorship election.

He polled 244,842 votes, while Jegede secured 150,380 votes.

Olusegun Mimiko, the immediate past governor, handed over power to Akeredolu late Thursday, after serving two terms.


Source: The Cable

Ondo footballers lay siege on Mimiko over 7 months unpaid salaries.

Footballers employed by the Ondo State Football Agency protested non-payment of seven months salaries at the governor’s office on Wednesday.

Mr. Mimiko was holding a meeting with members of his cabinet when the protesters came, blocking the entrance of the complex with their vehicles.

The male and female footballers, Sunshine Stars and Sunshine Queens, complained that the staff of the agency were owed 14 months salaries while the players have not been paid for seven months.

According to one of the players, who spoke to PREMIUM TIMES, the state had also failed to pay the sign-on fees of the player, which ought to have been paid this February.

He said officials of the football agency complained that payment of any kind was becoming difficult because the Accountant General of the state had been “missing” and there was no one to sign the papers for the release of the funds.

The players expressed fears that with just one day to the end of the Mimiko administration, their monies may not be paid after all.

They became more restive when the governor or any of the commissioners refused to address them.

Police officers who were drafted to handle the situation fired teargas to disperse the protesters.

Two female players passed out in the process and were rushed to a nearby hospital due to the intensity of the gas.

“They have decided to shoot us, let them throw teargas and bullets, we have not been paid and we will not leave here today,” a player cried out from the crowd.

Some of the players who were further angered by the action of the police, assailed the mobile police officers resulting in shoving and pushing between them.

The police area commander, O.I. Durosimi, pleaded with the players, who returned to their barricade, to calm down as they had registered their grievances and further aggression could result in harm.

The Commissioner for Culture and Tourism, Femi Adekanbi, later tried to persuade the players to stay off the entrance in order to keep them from attacking the convoy of the governor when going out.

He promised that the government would take their case up and ensure they were paid.

The players listened to the commissioner and moved across the road facing the gate, but insisted they would remain there until the governor took action to resolve the problem.

At the time of filing this report, the governor and the commissioners were still held up in the governor’s office, while the players laid siege.


Source: Premium Times

“Stop releasing funds to Mimiko”, Labour Unions tell Ondo Accountant-General.

Labour unions in Ondo State on Monday urged the state’s Accountant-General, Laolu Akindolire, to stop further release of funds to the government of Governor Olusegun Mimiko, whose tenure expires on Friday this week.

The letter, addressed to the Accountant-General, was signed by the chairman of the Joint Negotiating Council, JNC, Sunday Adeleye, his Nigeria Labour Congress, NLC, counterpart, Bosede Daramola, as well as the Chairman of the Trade Union Congress, TUC, Soladoye Ekundayo.

The unions alleged that they had information that the outgoing government was making efforts to mop up funds in the account of the state government for “frivolous projects”, before the end of its tenure.

The unions warned Mr. Akindolire not to abuse his office in approving money other than the payment of workers’ salaries.

Officials told PREMIUM TIMES that the Accountant-General had become evasive and had not been to his office to avoid influx of financial requests.

As a result, the N150 million requested by the outgoing administration to organise the inauguration ceremony has not been processed and is stuck in the Accountant-General’s office.

It was also gathered that efforts to reach Mr. Akindolire on his mobile phones had been impossible.

Commissioner for Information, Kayode Akinmade, in his response, said the projects completed by contractors needed to be paid only from funds earmarked for capital projects.

“There is a difference between funds meant for recurrent and those for capital expenditure,” he explained. “You cannot take recurrent funds and use it for capital projects.”

He argued that if a contractor has his certificates of a completed projects, he should be paid, even though salaries have not been paid, because the monies for the payment of salaries are different from those meant for contractors.

On the absconding of the Accountant General, Mr. Akinmade noted that in a transition, there was bound to be some strange movements in a bid to curry the attention of the incoming government.

“This is not unusual in a transition like this, where you see people trying to shift loyalty so that they would be favoured by the incoming government,” he said.

“But we should not play politics with the lives and well-being of the people,” he said.

He noted that Governor Mimiko would not do anything against the interest of the people and in breach of the fiscal responsibility laws of the land.

He had earlier told PREMIUM TIMES that it was legal for the administration to continue to spend funds from the state’s coffers for the next six months even without an extant budget, provided the spending did not exceed the prescribed amount for the period.


Source: Premium Times

Pay Us Our Outstanding Arrears Before Leaving Office – Ondo Pensioners Tell Mimiko

Retirees at the Rufus Giwa Polytechnic Owo (RUGIPO) in Ondo State have asked the outgoing Governor Olusegun Mimiko to offset their outstanding pension arrears before the handing over of his administration to a new government.

The retirees claimed that Mr. Mimiko’s outgoing government owed them an accumulated pension arrears of over N912,727,324.85 which have not been paid since December 31, 2016.

They made the demand for the payment of their entitlements in a press statement issued shortly after their annual general meeting held inside the institution’s campus at the weekend.

The statement was signed by their Chairman, Rufus Oguntoyinbo, and General Secretary, Steven Olufawoye, and was obtained by SaharaReporters in Akure on Sunday.

The pensioners, in the statement, disclosed how they had been suffering and undergoing hardship due to the outgoing government’s refusal to pay their salaries and pensions.

They lamented and explained how a fellow pensioner suddenly died on his sick bed as he could not raise the small sum of N500 to buy his regular prescribed medicine.

The retirees also stated that no fewer than fifty-seven of their colleagues, who had been a part of the struggle since 2006, had died mysteriously without receiving their arrears and wages.

They specifically blamed the outgoing governor, who will hand over the government on Thursday, for their predicament, stating that all the promises made by Mr. Mimiko to offset the debt were not fulfilled.

The aggrieved pensioners also fingered the immediate past Rector of the Rufus Giwa Poly, Igbekele Ajibefun, of being responsible for their misfortune.

They accused Mr. Ajibefun of not implementing a report of the State House of Assembly directing the institution to pay the outstanding arrears of the retirees.

“The Assembly directed that the management of the polytechnic should pay retirees the arrears of pension and gratuity as from 2006 to date.

“That management of the institution should commence the full payment of pensions to all retirees in accordance with enhanced salaries from 2001 to date.

“The financial implication of placing the affected pensioners on the enhanced pension increase rate is about N600,000 per month; which we expect management to add to the monthly wage bill.

“Ajibefun, who could not afford to release that amount to the monthly pension of some retirees, autocratically collected ?N49,600,000 as his gratuity at the end of his four years in office at the polytechnic.

“We are making the whole world, especially the incoming administration in Ondo State, know the predicaments of the retirees of the State Polytechnic,” the statement read in part.

Source: Sahara Reporters

Obasanjo Never Wanted Me To Become Governor – Mimiko

Ondo State governor, Olusegun Mimiko has denied betraying National leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Asiwaju Bola Tinubu and two former governors of Ondo State, the late Adebayo Adefarati and the late Olusegun Agagu.

He revealed this in his yet-to-be presented book ‘Mimiko’s Odyssey: A Biographer of Revelations’ which was released by Punch.

Mimiko also narrated how he was threatened by former President Olusegun Obasanjo



He said, “You don’t know the situation I was in then. Look, you don’t know Obasanjo. I worked with him. In history, go and check it out. There are not too many people who were able to resign from Obasanjo’s government.

“In fact, you can’t do it. Sir, you can’t just do it. I did not only resign, when I came to the Federal Executive Council after resignation, everybody thought they were seeing a ghost.

“Obasanjo hounded me out of Abuja, virtually. We came out with a new party.

“Anybody that gave N1m then, you can’t imagine how we would celebrate him or her. Four months to election, we were raising money in hundreds of thousands: N100,000; N50,000; N20,000



Source: politics.naij.com

Ondo Assembly crisis: PDP blasts aggrieved house members, issues ultimatum.

The Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, in Ondo State has expressed displeasure with the recent attempt by some members of the State House of Assembly to forcefully change the leadership of the house.

In a statement signed by its Director of Publicity, Ayodele Fadaka, the party said it took  exception to the “needless crisis” foisted on the house and the state by a few members.

“Their indecent assault on the paymaster of the House of Assembly can at best be equated with gangsterism and this is unbecoming of members of that respected organ of Government,” the statement said.

“The party also takes absolute exception to the ploy to misrepresent the government and party as being on a looting spree, the money that the paymaster went to bank to withdraw was to take care of certain expenditures by the Parliament and these honorable members are aware of that fact.

“Sequel to the foregoing, the Party hereby makes the following declarations;
(1) That it continues to recognize Rt Hon Jumoke Akindele as Speaker of the Ondo State House of Assembly. The Party also recognizes all other Principal Officers of the House of Assembly as the legitimately elected officers.

“(2) The Party also commiserates with the Paymaster who was needlessly assaulted, maligned and misrepresented in the media by these group, but urges him to take actions to address the infractions on both his fundamental human rights and official responsibilities.

“The Party therefore mandates these group of Assembly members to as a matter of urgency apologise to the Government and Party, for intentionally misrepresenting us as looters, and for assaulting and maligning the Paymaster in two national newspapers within the the next five days of face its wrath.”

It added that the PDP would not tolerate indiscipline and ordered the faction to begin to conduct itself with decorum forthwith.

The PDP-controlled assembly erupted in a factional crisis when 13 members allegedly suspended the speaker and her deputy as well as the majority leader on allegations of fraud.

While the PDP has 21 members in the house, the All Progressives Congress, APC, has five, but the faction loyal to the Speaker had accused the APC of masterminding the crisis.

The tenure of the PDP led-government will end on February 24, when Rotimi Akeredolu of the APC, who won the November 26, 2016 governorship election, will be sworn in for a tenure of four years.

NBS Report: Residents of Abia, Osun, Ondo paid highest price for kerosene in December

Abia, Osun and Ondo states recorded the highest average prices per litre of kerosene in December 2016, the National Bureau of Statistics, NBS, has said.

A report tagged the National Household Kerosene Price Watch for December 2016 stated that Abia recorded an average price of N211 per litre, while Osun and Ondo recorded N210 per litre.

The report, the NBS stated, presented the average monthly price paid by households for kerosene (HHK) across the 36 States and Federal Capital Territory, FCT.

According to the report, states with the lowest average prices per litre include Benue, Gombe and Kogi, which recorded N185. Others are Abuja and Sokoto with N183 and N180 respectively.

For the prices per gallon watch, states that recorded the highest average prices are Lagos, Ekiti and Rivers states with record of N1153, N1142 and N1141 respectively.

Kwara, Niger and Ebonyi recorded the lowest average price per gallon with records of N969, N940 and N938 respectively.

In the past week, scarcity of kerosene, used by millions of largely poor Nigerians for cooking, hit major cities in Nigeria, causing huge increase in price.

Reports had it that the situation caused some residents to turn to alternatives such as firewood and cooking gas.

Three of the most affected cities are Kaduna and Zaria in Kaduna State and Calabar in Cross River State. The scarcity also crept into some parts of Lagos and Ogun states.

Full list of students suspended, expelled by Ondo State University of Science and Technology

The Ondo State University of Science and Technology, Okitipupa, has announced the expulsion of four students for gross misconduct.

The university also suspended 16 other students for various cases of examination malpractices for one to two academic semesters.

Felix Akinusi, the acting Registrar of the institution who confirmed this to the News Agency of Nigeria on Wednesday in Okitipupa said that the students had been advised to stay away from the university premises.

He also issued a strong warning to other students to desists from misconducts and malpractice, urging them to pursue their educational career with seriousness.

“The university has expelled four students over gross misconduct, they were involved in physical assault of their colleagues on campus.

“The other 16 that were suspended were involved in various examination malpractice for two semesters.

“Students should desists from misconducts or malpractice which can put them on the sideline, they should concentrate and pursue their academic career to a logical end with seriousness,” Mr. Akinusi said.

The students expelled and their departments are; Akande Samuel (Microbiology), Oluwatayo Adewale (Geophysics), Okunomo Henry (Biochemistry), and Akinteye Babatunde (Biochemistry).

The suspended students are; Akinkuowo Fisayo (Zoology), Oladimeji Oluwatobi ( Microbiology), Oladokun Emmanuel (Geophysics), Akinde Abiodun (Industrial Chemistry), Elisha Felicia (Biochemistry), Ohafugor Joseph (Geophysics).

Others include: Kayode Samuel (Physics), Agbaje Taofeek (Mathematics), Oni Olubunmi (Fisheries), Olanipekun Oluwasanmi (Physics), Ayadi Segun (Fisheries), Adebisi Oladotun (Botany).

The rest are Edward Monday (Mathematics), Udoh Emmanuel (Industrial Chemistry), Burojo Ojo (Mathematics) and Sanusi Idris (Fisheries).

I spent N54.762 billion on roads in Ondo in 8 years – Mimiko

The outgoing Governor of Ondo State, Olusegun Mimiko, has said his administration spent a total of N54.76 billion on road construction in the eight years of his administration.

He said the amount was besides outstanding financial commitments to contractors handling various road projects in the state.

Mr. Mimiko has been largely criticised by opposition parties for failing to provide extensive road infrastructure for the people, particularly those linking rural communities.

They had cited potholes along roads in Akure despite huge funds available to the government in the last eight years.

The parties, especially the All Progressives Congress which won the November governorship election, made road construction and rehabilitation as one of its campaign focus.

However, Mr. Mimiko stated on Thursday at the official commissioning of NEPA -Arakala Road Project, Bus Shelters and Terminals in Akure, that his administration had performed well above his predecessors in the area of road construction.

The governor revealed that the Arakala dualisation which was being commissioned ,was to be undertaken alongside with the dualisation of Oba- Adesida road in 1977,but was jettisoned for lack of political will to relocate the ancient buildings, shrines and artefacts along the corridors of this project.

Mr. Mimiko noted that therefore pegged the developmental stride for over 30 years as successive administrations did not proceed with it.

Although NEPA-Arakale road and other projects commissioned had been completed since 2013 and 2014, the commissioning barely two months to the end of his tenure may be a way to highlight his achievements ahead of the governor’s handing over.

“A total number of 439 houses were enumerated, and compensation totalling N987,358,985 only was paid to the affected landlords, to successfully dualise the Arakale road,” he said.

“We are proud to be part of history and a government that benchmarked good road infrastructure, consistent street light, consistent bus shuttle facility, geometric increase of dualised roads from 2 to 8 while another one is just commencing at Ikare Akoko.

“I wish to emphasize at this junction that while we were working on this road, we were also fixing other roads simultaneously especially within the Akure metropolis.”

Mr. Mimiko however appealed to the people of the state to see the roads as a collective heritage that should be protected by all.

Addressing the gathering earlier, the Commissioner for Works, Gboye Adegbenro, stressed the fact that successive administrations had tried since 1976 to dualise the roads, but found it impossible due to the opposition of the landlords and traditional chiefs.

“The road is home to ancient shrines and sites revered by the Akure people,” he said, noting that the sacredness of the road accounted for the delays in constructing it.

“Also, no provision for walkways and parking lot along the road resulting in heavy human traffic, coupled with shops extending so close to the road.”

“1100 by 600x150mm thick cover drain of 4.8km length was constructed for provision of adequate drainage system and to serve as pedestrian walkways along both sides of the road,” Mr. Adegbenro said.

“And intervals service ducts were constructed for service lines that may likely be drawn along the corridor in future; 200mm thick stone base and 90mm thick asphalt was laid on road surface to accommodate heavy axis loads.”

Other facilities commissioned include 14 bus shelters, two bus terminals, and three parking lots of 1000 vehicles capacity, which were constructed to curtail traffic congestion on the road.

“Illumination on the road in the night was also taken care by constructing bright street light installed along the concrete median of the road,” he added.

Jegede makes U-turn, says he will not challenge Akeredolu’s victory

Candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, in the recently concluded governorship election in Ondo State, Eyitayo Jegede, has decided against challenging the outcome of the election in court, as widely expected.

Jegede, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria, SAN, disclosed to Vanguard that he had accepted the victory of Rotimi Akeredolu of the All Progressives Congress, APC, in good faith and had moved on in the spirits of good sportsmanship.

The PDP candidate said that there was no need to continue to fight over the matter since the people of Ondo State had decided on who they want to serve them at this time.

In his words, “I have taken a decision to move on and I wish Governor Rotimi Akeredolu success, promising to release an official statement later in the day.

“I speak for myself. I believe that if I cannot serve the people of Ondo State now, another opportunity will come for me to do so at another time. I have a profession and I am returning to my law practice.

“There is always need to demonstrate true statesmanship and that is what I have done,” Jegede said.

Akeredolu, Mimiko begin transition, hold first meeting since election

Rotimi Akeredolu, governor-elect of Ondo state, and Olusegun Mimiko, outgoing governor, met on Wednesday for the first time since the September 26 election.


Mimiko, who received Akeredolu at the Alagbaka Government House, Akure, said he had put in place a “seamless” transition to usher in a new government in February.


He sought Akeredolu’s support and emphasied on the need to sustain the peace being enjoyed in the state.


Mimiko described the peace in Ondo as one of the greatest accomplishments of his government.


Akeredolu and Mimiko

Akeredolu commended him for his services to the state.


He said Mimiko had displayed exemplary leadership quality in various capacities, and that history will be Kind to him.

Ondo Election: Police IG confirms non-payment of officers, orders probe

In contrast to the earlier position of the Nigeria Police, the Inspector General of the Police, Ibrahim Idris, has accepted that some police personnel who were on duty during the just concluded governorship election in Ondo State, were yet to be paid their allowances several days after the elections.

The Police IG has therefore has set up a panel to investigate why the policemen were not paid their entitlements.

Mr. Idris, in a statement released on Friday by the Force spokesman, Don Awunah, appealed for “a little patience” from the affected policemen.

The issue is being looked into, and no one would be cheated of his due, the police IG assured.

The investigation panel, the statement said, would be headed by a retired assistant inspector general of police, Ali Ahmadu.

As previously reported by PREMIUM TIMES, several policemen took to the street in Ondo on Monday to protest the non-payment of their allowances after the Ondo election.

The statement from the Police IG therefore confirmed a PREMIUM TIMES report that the police lied when they denied that the protest took place.

Read the full statement released by the police:


The Inspector General of Police, IGP Ibrahim K. Idris, NPM, mni deeply concerned about the delay, omission and discrepancies in payment of allowances to officers of the Nigeria Police Force who participated in the just concluded gubernatorial election in Ondo state; and also arising from complaints of irregularities from certain quarters and discoveries of possible anomalies and plausible foul play, has set up a special panel to investigate, streamline and enhance payment of entitlements of the force personnel who engage in adhoc duties.

  1. The special panel is empowered to launch an investigation into the entire payment system with a view to:
  2. Investigating thoroughly the recent payment of allowances to personnel of the force to determine if the money released for the payment of the allowances was utilized accordingly, providing bank records as evidence.
  3. Liaising with the Ministry of Finance on the perennial problematic nature of paying allowances.
  4. Setting up standard modalities that will be adopted by the force to address payment of allowances given by the Federal Government for the conduct of subsequent elections in the country.
  5. Recommending where appropriate disciplinary actions against erring officers both within and outside the force.
  6. The SIP at the end of the investigation is to recommend professional modalities for payment of allowances in line with government due process for subsequent payment of allowances to personnel of the force engaged in adhoc duties. This development is pursuant to the policy of the Inspector General of Police for transparency and accountability in all aspects of the Nigeria Police Force and in readiness for the establishment of a standard template that would be used in the conduct of subsequent elections.
  7. The investigation panel will be chaired by Retired AIG Ali Ahmadu with the following as members:
  8. a representative from the office of Police Account and Budget
  9. a representative from the office of Director of Finance

iii. a representative from the office of DIG Operations

  1. a representative from the office of IGP Project Monitoring Unit
  2. a member from the office of the Special Investigation Panel to assist the chairman in conducting the investigation
  3. a representative from the office of Police Legal Section to serve as secretary
  4. The Inspector General of Police enjoins officers who are yet to receive their payment to exercise a little more patience as the issue is already being looked into, assuring them that no one would be cheated of his due. He further urges anyone with useful information that can assist the panel in their investigation not to hesitate in coming forward with such and assures the Nigerian public that the police will always uphold transparency and due process in all her affairs.

DCP Don N. Awunah, fsi

Force Public Relations Officer

Mimiko: Profile In Treachery – By Louis Odion

A cartoon published earlier by Punch offers perhaps the most prophetic foreword to the political tragedy that climaxed in Ondo on November 26. Someone in an unconscious state is sketched being hustled away from the shelter of the Iroko (big oak tree) as the Good Samaritan mutters, “struck by lightning”.

Indisputably, the Iroko moniker is patent for the brand of politics Dr. Olusegun Mimiko has retailed in Ondo State in the past two decades. The ill-starred vagrant depicted in the cartoon could only be Eyitayo Jegede, a senior advocate he had anointed to succeed him as governor, only to finish poorly in last weekend’s polls.

The cartoonist’s surreal evocation is obviously rooted in Yoruba cosmology, which ordinarily invests the Iroko shrub with some metaphysical prowess. But in the event that such powers prove impotent under a tempest, so much that the proverbial lightning could strike so viciously right under its shadow, it is then safe to conclude that such Iroko must have “gba abode” (come under an evil spell).

What remains therefore is its decapitation as a rite in exorcism.

For a man who has more or less dominated Ondo politics in the last decade, so sad that Mimiko would end riotously on a low. Now completely stripped after the November 26 endgame and haunted still by the grotesque shadow of PDP in complete disarray on account of factionalization, it would be entirely surprising today if Iroko is not already filled with nostalgia for the comfort and the peace of mind the old Labour Party had provided him before greed for power lured him to PDP in 2014.

For an outgoing governor, nothing indeed could be traumatizing as the thoughts of a hostile takeover. For a man obsessed with the affectation of populism over the years and who, by action, seemed forever apprehensive about how future historians would accommodate him, how ironic that Mimiko will have to spend his remaining days in office agonizing more on how to balance the naira and kobo in the financial book, let alone bother about what fate awaits the sundry cenotaphs carved in his image across the state.

But let no one shed tears for this prodigal son. Alas, the Iroko of perfidy is irreverently toppled by the whirlwind of Karma. Only poor students of history would not have foreseen this calamitous end for Mimiko.

In hindsight, it is obvious that the deep fissures in PDP at the national level contributed to Jegede’s defeat. But even as the chairman of the PDP Governors Forum, Mimiko acted up his billing as a political sailor without moral compass. All along, he continued to flirt with both the Makarfi camp and the Sheriff faction, perhaps shamelessly hoping to bed one after the other. Until Jimoh Ibrahim locked the room and took away the key.

To be fair, overall, no one can deny the fallen Iroko credits for modest achievements in the area of improved healthcare (especially maternal welfare) and empowerment of market women through the provision of stalls and soft loans.

But with the hostile take-over of last weekend, Iroko has lost the opportunity to have a say in how his story in the last eight years will be officially documented. And the stories of his little miracle here and there will likely be completely obliterated when the “enemies” commence a re-write after his exit.

Essentially, Mimiko’s tragic flaw stems from the carnal assumption that political success is to be measured only by material acquisitions without subscribing to any enduring moral value. To believe in nothing and stand for nothing is the worst cardinal sin. Even common harlots are governed by some ethics – an obligation to keep clients’ confidentiality, for instance.

Now, Iroko’s loneliness should be framed in the proper context. In his hey-day, he conveniently chose to believe that politics and politicking could exist in a moral vacuum. A psychotic affliction which led my brother and colleague, Sam Omatseye, to memorably characterize him as “whitlow of the South-west”.

In his delusion, the medical-doctor-turned-politician forgot that politics is defined by an avowal of a set of values. Without that, the player is perhaps no better than a motor-park tout, scavenging for his next meal ticket.

To the scion of the otherwise illustrious Mimiko family of Ondo town, politics is all about self and the preservation of narrow interests. That explains why his political odyssey in the last seventeen years would now look more like an adventure in treacheries and infamy.

As an appointee of Governor Ade Adefarati of Alliance for Democracy (AD) between 1999 and 2002, he was recruited by PDP to undermine his benefactor.

When Olusegun Agagu became governor in 2003 through PDP’s now infamous “operation totality” in the South-west, he was compensated with the plum office Secretary to the State Government.

Barely two years later, he was “promoted” to Abuja as minister. But he wanted something bigger – Agagu’s job! That set him at odds with Obasanjo and Agagu and would ignite a chain of events culminating in his migration to the Labour Party in 2006.

His scant regard for loyalty explains why he later felt no scruples in trading the otherwise much cherished Labour badge away for a rickety accommodation in PDP two years ago, thus casually abandoning mid-stream the teeming community of workers across the country who had basked in the illusion of a toe-hold, if not foothold, in political power in Nigeria through Ondo.

Yet, when it mattered most, when the PDP hyenas callously left him defenestrated in 2006, it was the same Labour that graciously offered him shelter and platform for rehabilitation. Having used the vehicle to gain second term in 2012, he opted to trade with PDP. Without conscience, he owed workers whopping six months salaries, but had money to finance his surrogate’s election bid. Without shame, he again attempted to deceive the same labour unions weeks ago by urging them to vote Jegede with a laughable promise to pay after the elections.

The same lack of sense of loyalty also explains why Mimiko hardly batted an eyelid three years ago before clamping down heavily on the popular Adaba FM in Akure. For airing news items he did not find flattering, he showed naked power by doing the unthinkable – dug a deep valley in the only access road to the station! That punitive action rendered it inaccessible to workers and clients.

Yet, when PDP “stole” his mandate in 2007 and he was left alone in the wilderness, the same Adaba FM provided him a platform to speak directly to the Ondo public, at no cost.

At personal level, the ordeals of Asiwaju Bola Tinubu and Barrister Jimoh Ibrahim are now public knowledge. For all Tinubu’s moral and financial support during the protracted legal battle to reclaim his stolen mandate, Mimiko, emboldened by his new PDP friends in Abuja, would turn round to publicly call his old benefactor unprintable names during his re-election bid in 2012.

If Jimoh Ibrahim chose to go dirty and personal against Mimiko and his surrogate, it is probably the only way the maverick businessman imagined he could avenge what he considers a great betrayal. The story is told of how the Igbotako-born publisher of Mirror Newspaper had extended huge financial support as well as legal guidance and counseling to Mimiko while fighting Agagu between 2007 and 2008 even though the latter was supposed to be his kinsman.

But once Mimiko entered office, as the story goes, one of the early actions he took was to move against Ibrahim’s interest in Ondo’s hospitality sector.

In 2010 came a big drama at the Akure airport. On landing from Abuja in a chartered propeller aircraft, Mimiko decided to walk over and say “hello” to Ibrahim nestling in his new Challenger jet. But no sooner had the governor stepped onto the aisle than Ibrahim reportedly barked at him, wondering what strange coffee he drank: “Who invited you to my plane?! Get out of my plane!!”

With his security details left in a quandary as Ibrahim raised hell, Mimiko quietly left the scene.

The paths of the two old-buddies-turned-adversaries would again cross in 2011 when Ibrahim first sought to contest the governorship on the platform of PDP, the sponsorship of which he had since taken over. As the story goes, then President Goodluck Jonathan counseled him to wait till 2016 as “Mimiko is working for me even though he’s in Labour Party.”

Though disappointed at the turn of events, Ibrahim obeyed Jonathan. Thus, “federal might” was put behind Mimiko to overrun APC’s Rotimi Akeredolu in 2012, rendering PDP’s own Olusola Oke a political orphan in the polls. But no sooner had Mimiko been sworn in for second term in 2013 than he, characteristically, decided to officially move over to PDP, thus displacing Ibrahim’s as the party leader in Ondo.

Extravagantly hoping Jonathan would deliver himself in 2015, Iroko began to see himself as PDP’s clearing-house in South-west and, ipso facto, the new Yoruba leader.

Today, the lightning has struck and Ibrahim is obviously having the last laugh.

Soldiers drafted to restore peace to warring Ogun, Ondo communities

Soldiers have been drafted to quell a violent conflict between two communities in Ogun and Ondo states.


PREMIUM TIMES reported how violence erupted between Makun-Omi and Ajijere communities in Ogun and Ondo States respectively.


The two communities fought over the ownership of a boundary village, Limorisa, between them.


The soldiers were deployed after a security council meeting in Ogun State.


Residents said calm is gradually returning to the affected areas.

Ondo guber: Handover without discrepancies – APC tells Mimiko

The All Progressives Congress in Ondo State has expressed delight in the congratulatory message sent by Governor Olusegun Mimiko to the Governor-elect, Mr. Oluwarotimi Akeredolu (SAN).

The party also urged the outgoing governor to ensure smooth transition of power to the governor-elect.

The party’s Publicity Secretary, Mr. Abayomi Adesanya, in a statement issued in Akure on Thursday, commended Mimiko for his ”show of sportsmanship”.

He said, “We accept the congratulatory message of Mr. Governor on our candidate’s landslide victory in the last Saturday’s governorship election.

“APC commends the outgoing governor for his statesmanship.

“We urge him to ensure smooth transition and genuine handover devoid of discrepancies and imbalances experienced by President Muhammadu Buhari when he took over from former President Goodluck Jonathan.”

Mimiko had on November 28 congratulated Akeredolu and wished him success in the challenging task of governing the state.

INEC had declared Akeredolu of the APC as winner of the Nov. 26 governorship election in the state after polling 244,842 votes to beat his closest rival, Eyitayo Jegede, of the Peoples’ Democratic Party, who garnered 150,380 votes.

No group can lay claim to Akeredolu’s victory – APC chieftain

A chieftain of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Mr. Saka Yusuf, said on Thursday that no group can lay claim to the victory of the All Progressives Congress (APC) governorship candidate, Mr. Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, SAN, in the just concluded gubernatorial poll in Ondo State.

Yusuf, was reacting to a published story accredited to the former Deputy Governor, Alhaji Ali Olanusi, that those who defected from the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) were responsible for the victory of the party.

But, the party chieftain, who spoke with reporters in Akure, the state capital said it was the people of the state who voted for Akeredolu.

Yusuf noted that the PDP defectors are in two blocks, adding that they include the Akokos and the Ikale.

He stressed that the local government where majority of them are from in Akoko, the Akoko South west has always been won by APC due to the factor of late Governor Adebayo Adefarati and his son, Gboyega.

He also explained that the Ikale, which has always been the stronghold of PDP, particularly Okitipupa has never been won by APC despite the defectors are from that local government.

Yusuf, however, said their defections added value to the party but the people of the state made the victory of Akeredolu happened.

“We have three reasons why we won the election. The credibility and acceptability of Akeredolu, the desire to align with the federal government by our people and the people poor performance of Governor Olusegun Mimiko’s government.

“How are you expecting a governor to win in a civil servant state when workers are being owned seven months salaries”?

Pay Workers Their Salaries, Oyegun Urges Akeredolu

National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC) Chief John Odigie-Oyegun, yesterday urged Ondo State governor-elect Rotimi  Akeredolu to make the payment of workers’ salaries his priority on resumption of office.

Workers in the state have not been paid their monthly salaries for seven months.

Odigie-Oyegun, who spoke when Akeredolu visited the party’s national secretariat  to show him his certificate of return, said making payment of salaries his first priority would endear Akeredolu to the people.

“People who work deserve their pay and I hope that would be your first priority,” he said.

Tinubu not more than state level APC leader, Akeredolu suggests.

The Ondo State governor-elect, on Wednesday at the State House, suggested former Lagos Governor Bola Tinubu is not more than a state level leader of the All Progressives Congress.

So, Mr. Akeredolu said, mentioning Mr. Tinubu in his victory speech, after he specially acknowledged President Muhammadu Buhari and party chairman John Odigie-Oyegun could have necessitated inclusion of “36 or 37” leaders – referring to the 36 States of the federation and the Federal Capital Territory.

Mr. Akeredolu, accompanied by the deputy governor-elect, Agboola Ajayi, addressed journalists after meeting with Mr. Buhari, and explained why he didn’t mention Mr. Tinubu – reputed for his pivotal role in the formation of APC and emergence of Mr. Buhari – in his victory speech.

In his victory speech after he was declared winner of the election on Sunday, Mr. Akeredolu “profusely” thanked Mr. Buhari; Mr. Oyegun, the “indefatigable and principled Chairman”; and “loyal” governors and ministers – subtly hitting at South West APC leaders, including Governor Rauf Aregbesola of Osun State and his Lagos counterpart, Akinwumi Ambode, who had abandoned him during campaign, allegedly supporting Olusola Oke of Alliance for Democracy instead.

Although Messrs. Tinubu and Ambode have extended congratulations to Mr. Akeredolu, it is apparent, with his subtle denigration on Wednesday, the governor-elect is still angry he was not supported by the former Lagos Governor.

He said, “On the names that were mentioned in my speech when expressing gratitude and that I didn’t specifically thank Bola Ahmed Tinubu. I thanked the President and the leader of our party profusely for the leadership which he showed leading to this election.

“I also thanked our indefatigable chairman for standing by the truth and for his position on this matter that led to this election. I have no reason to do otherwise.

“Party structure to the best of my knowledge is very clear. You have the leadership of the party and that is represented by Chief John Odigie-Oyegun.

“After the election, a chief executive emerges, he becomes a leader of the party, you don’t have to personalise and be looking for leaders all over the place.

“If we have to do that, then I will have to mention 36 or 37 leaders. So I believe the leadership as represented by the President covers all leaders and that tells me it would include Chief Bola Ahmed Tinubu, it would include even Baba Akande, Onu, and so many leaders.

“But President Buhari is the leader of the party. So, that is my position there.”

He however denied rift with Mr. Tinubu.

“For me as a person, I believe he is one of the leaders of the party and I don’t see any strain relationship between us. And you would observe that he has sent in his congratulatory message after the election, so what else do you expect?

”I mean all of us see this as victory for the APC, not for Akeredolu, not for us an individual but for the party as a whole. I believe he is a member of the party. Mr. Femi Adesina had issued a release but you journalists just want to put words into our mouths,” said Mr. Akeredolu.

Mr. Akeredolu and his deputy were led to the President by the Chairman of APC Campaign Council in Ondo State, Governor Simon Lalong of Plateau State.

Mr. Tinubu had backed Olusegun Abraham to clinch APC ticket eventually won by Mr. Akeredolu to contest, and win, last Saturday’s governorship election.

But Mr. Akeredolu’s emergence in the primary saw aggrieved losers like Messrs Abraham and Oke petition APC appeals panel.

The panel invalidated Mr. Akeredolu’s victory but Mr. Oyegun-led National Working Committee overruled the panel, provoking a furious Mr. Tinubu to accuse his party of injustice and demand the chairman’s resignation in a strongly worded letter in which he also renounced the “honorific title” of national leader.

Mr. Tinubu later in his congratulatory message to Mr. Akeredolu called Mr. Buhari the “national leader of the party whose stature and dignity helped guide APC to another victory.”

Bola Ilori, an ex-aide to Mr. Aregbesola, staunchly pro-Tinubu, headed Mr. Oke’s campaign, and many APC card carrying members loyal to the former Lagos Governor, citing “injustice in our party” openly mobilised support for the AD’s flag bearer, fueling allegations Mr. Tinubu backed Mr. Oke who came distant third in the elections.

But the Presidency, in a statement on Monday, said Mr. Tinubu did not work against APC in Ondo, having promised Mr. Buhari he would not be involved in anti-party politics.

The statement also denied any plot against Mr. Tinubu and acknowledged him as “a priceless asset” to the APC.

Mr. Akeredolu reached the pinnacle of his career, becoming President of the Nigerian Bar Association. But in politics, he did not count much to anything when Mr. Tinubu backed him when he first aimed at becoming Ondo Governor in 2012.

But then in the 2012 poll, he came third in that election, coming behind Olusola Oke of PDP then, and Olusegun Mimiko who used Labour Party to clinch a second term.

Ondo guber: Pay your officers who took part in election – Akeredolu tells Police

The newly elected governor of Ondo State, Mr Oluwarotimi Akeredolu (SAN), Wednesday described as embarrassing the inability of the Police authority to pay its men and officers who participated in the state governorship election on Saturday.


Akeredolu, who said that the policemen who took part in the election had been stranded and become a burden to him because they had been coming to his house since the Saturday election to demand for money from him, urged the Nigeria Police Force (NPF) to pay the allowances of security personnel deployed for the election.


This development came as the Akure Divisional Unity Forum (ADUF) advised the Governor-elect to emulate the principle of former Governor Michael Adekunle Ajasin, the first civilian governor of the state.

In the letter of congratulation signed by Chief Samuel Agboola Akintan and Prof Olu Aboluwoye, ADUF said the Akure division comprising of Akure South, North, Ifedore and Idanre Local Governments need rapid development.


Some security men posted for the election had protested the non-payment of their allowances in the state on Monday, causing traffic gridlock and logjam in Ondo West council area.


But speaking after he was given his Certificate of Return by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) Akeredolu disclosed that the security operatives complained to him that their allowances were not paid since they were deployed for the election last week.

Violence erupts between neighbouring communities in Ogun, Ondo

There have been clashes between neighbouring communities of Makun-Omi and Apijere located in Ogun and Ondo States respectively, leaving many people injured.

The violence was caused by both communities laying claims to the ownership of Limorisa , a border village between the two communities.

A witness told PREMIUM TIMES that local guns and other cudgels were freely used in the violence on Wednesday morning.

The witness said majority of the residents of Makun-Omi have deserted the community and some of them shot.

A High Chief and secretary to the traditional ruler of Makun-Omi, Biodun Odumade, while speaking from his hideout, said the community has been sacked by invaders, who he said were militants from the neighbouring community.

Mr. Odumade said the violence erupted when Makun-Omi residents resisted attempts by the invaders, who he said arrived in a boat to take over the controversial border community

“We are just 10 kilometres to Apijere community in Ondo State, with Limorisa a boundary community. We have been exercising ownership of the land since 1940,and we receive royalty, until recently when we were attacked,” the community leader said

“As I am talking to you now, some of our people have been shot. Even the youth corpers posted here had to escape alongside others through a bush path,” Mr. Odumade said.

He called on security operatives to come to the rescue of the community.

The Secretary to the Ogun State Government, Adeoluwa Taiwo, could not be reached as his phone was not available as at the time of this report.

PREMIUM TIMES gathered that Mr. Taiwo and the state’s security chiefs were holding an emergency meeting on the crisis as at the time of this report.

Details later…

APC leader denies inducing voters during Ondo election.

The All Progressives Congress in Ondo State on Monday denied that one of its leaders and governorship aspirant, Tunji Ariyomo, induced voters with money during the voting exercise on Saturday.

The party in a statement, signed by its publicity director, Steve Otaloro, said the allegation that Mr. Ariyomo shared money in Ward 2 in Akure South Local Government Area was concocted.

A footage circulated on the Internet by Ondo television, a media organisation owned by the PDP-led government in the state, showed some persons accusing Mr. Ariyomo of campaigning at the polling unit.

A man who led the protest, urged him to leave the polling unit, saying his action was “bad, illegal and unconstitutional,” as security men tried to calm the situation.

The footage however did not show him campaigning or distributing money.

“As a party, we want it on record that this is a concocted mischief designed originally by the PDP to upset the momentum carried by the APC unto the election day in Akure South LGA by undermining the credibility of one of our frontline leaders in the local government,” APC said.

“We are particularly disappointed that some media houses could lend themselves to propagating such outright malicious fabrication even when the PDP’s noisome accuser in the video never made such claim.

“Everybody in Akure is familiar with the popularity of Engr. Ariyomo among the local folks and the feverish support given to him by the youth.

“This was what was termed campaigning by the accuser when the chant of IMOLE rented the air upon the arrival of Ariyomo in his ward on that day.”

The statement noted that it was pure mischief for any person to accuse Mr. Ariyomo, an avowed advocate of cashless politics, of sharing money for votes.

“We have identified the PDP-led state government and the PDP spokesman, Dayo Adeyeye, as the sources of this reckless unsubstantiated accusation,” the statement further said.

“The party’s objective was to derail the election of Saturday where the people of Ondo State freely, fairly and peacefully expressed their preferences.

“Their smear campaign is evident demonstration of desperation and confusion by minds that faced imminent electoral defeat which has been reflected in the fact that the PDP led government in Ondo State via its ondoTV would later graduate this accusation from canvassing for votes to sharing of money.”

The party challenged the PDP-led state government, their party and agents to make public the video where Mr. Ariyomo was sharing money, attempting to share money or canvass for votes.

Mr. Ariyomo, who later to spoke to PREMIUM TIMES correspondent in Akure, said he could not be advocating a democratic process devoid of money politics and at the same time be sharing money to woo voters.

“During campaigns, I refuse to give money to those who make demands for it, because I do not believe in the practice of doling out money to win votes,” he said.

“Initially, the allegation was that I was campaigning during voting, but later they changed it.

“What happened was that when I arrived the venue, a lot of the people were shouting, Imole, which is the name I am popularly known with, I had to urge them to calm down to preserve the serenity of the voting environment.”

But the PDP insisted that Mr. Ariyomo carried out the act of distributing money along with others.

“Yes, he did it,” the publicity director of the party, Ayo Fadaka, told PREMIUM TIMES on Monday on the telephone.

“He was not the only one doing it, there were others who were doing it as well.”

The candidate of the Alliance for Democracy, Olusola Oke, had earlier lamented the use of money to induce voters during the election.

Mr. Oke, while congratulating Rotimi Akeredolu, the winner of the election, noted that the monetization of the electoral process by “the ruling parties,” was detrimental to democratic principles and belies the anticorruption campaign of the present administration.

Governor Mimiko Backs Down, Congratulates Akeredolu As Governor-elect.

Outgoing Ondo state Governor, Olusegun Mimiko,  has congratulated the Governor-elect, Rotimi Akeredolu over his victory in Saturday’s guber poll.


Mimiko in a congratulatory message signed by his Chief Press Secretary, Eniola Akinsola, said he would facilitate a smooth transition of his government with the incoming administration of Mr. Akeredolu in the days ahead.


The statement which came as a surprise to many reads: “It behoves of him as the Governor of Ondo State to congratulate the Governor-elect, Mr. Rotimi Akeredolu (SAN) and wish him success in the challenging task of governing our dear state.


“It is incumbent upon me as Governor to facilitate a smooth transition between my government and the incoming one. I will, to this end, provide the ambience for a smooth and seamless transition process.”


Mimiko promised to provide continued leadership to the state until the last day in office.


He appreciated the people for their peaceful conduct during the Saturday poll adding that he would not renege on his promised till the end of his tenure.


“I use this medium to express my sincere appreciation to all our citizens for the very peaceful manner in which they conducted themselves throughout the election period.


“I will not waiver in providing needed leadership to our dear State till the last day of my term,” the governor said.


He asked the residents of the state to strive to sustain the peace enjoyed in the state for the past seven years with a promise to address them publicly at a date to be announced later.


The governor who suffered bruising defeat in last Saturday’s guber election has not paid workers salaries in the last 7 months.

OndoDecides: “Abuja has prevailed over Tinubu”, says Yinka Odumakin.

The Yoruba socio-cultural organisation, Afenifere, considers the victory of Rotimi Akeredolu of the All Progressives Congress in the just concluded Ondo governorship election as a blow to Bola Tinubu’s hold on south-west politics, the organisation’s spokesperson has said.

The Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, declared Mr. Akeredolu winner on Sunday, having polled 244, 842 to defeat his challengers, mainly Eyitayo Jegede of Peoples Democratic Party with 150,380 votes and Olusola Oke of Alliance for Democracy with 126,889 votes.

This outcome, Afenifere spokesperson, Yinka Odumakin, told PREMIUM TIMES on Sunday, meant “Abuja has prevailed over the south-west which worked against Akeredolu.”

“And this is going to have implications for future politics of the south-west,” Mr. Odumakin added.Akeredolu1

Pressed to explain what he meant by “Abuja” and ‘south-west” – Mr. Odumakin said that, “the South West APC has a controlling leadership under Tinubu, or by South West I mean the Tinubu caucus which is the majority in the region.”

“And, at the moment, Fashola (Babatunde), Governor Ibikunle Amosun (of Ogun State) and Fayemi (Kayode) do not belong to that group under Tinubu which was opposed to Akeredolu’s emergence.”

He said Afenifere would watch “these implications” as they unfold.

Mr. Akeredolu’s emergence as the candidate of the APC months ago at the expense of several aspirants, including Olusegun Abraham, backed by Mr. Tinubu, had generated crisis which saw aggrieved defeated aspirants petition the party’s appeals panel.

The panel invalidated Mr. Akeredolu’s victory at the primary poll, but the National Working Committee of the party led by John Odigie-Oyegun overruled the panel, provoking a furious Mr. Tinubu to accusehis party of injustice and undemocratic tendencies, and demand Mr. Oyegun’s resignation in a strongly worded letter through which he also renounced the “honorific title” of national leader of the ruling party.

Olusola Oke, Ondo APC Aspirant    Photo by SaharaReporters
Olusola Oke, Ondo AD governorship candidate

But Mr. Odigie-Oyegun, who hit back at Mr. Tinubu and dismissed allegations against him as reckless, has remained in office, apparently backed by President Muhammadu Buhari.

Mr. Tinubu and his core loyalists, including Governor Rauf Aregbesola of Osun State and Akinwunmi Ambode of Lagos State refused to endorse Mr. Akeredolu and shunned his grand rally attended by Messrs. Buhari, Oyegun, Amosun, Fayemi and Senate President Bukola Saraki in Akure.

One of Mr. Aregbesola’s aides, Bola Ilori led AD’s Mr. Oke’s campaign and many card carrying APC members, citing “injustice” in their party, openly mobilised support for Mr. Oke, fuelling claims Mr. Tinubu backed the AD’s candidate against his own party’s flag bearer.

Mr. Oke joined AD to contest the election after he lost in the APC primary. But despite the support he had from APC members in the south-west, he came distant third leaving over 100 thousand votes between himself and Mr. Akeredolu who faced abandonment by his own party members and leaders in the region.

In his victory speech, Mr. Akeredolu thanked Mr. Buhari, Mr. Oyegun whom he called “our indefatigable and principled chairman”, and “loyal” governors – subtly hitting at his APC governors in the south-west allegedly involved in anti-party activities.

However, hours after Mr. Akeredolu was officially declared winner by INEC, Mr. Tinubu congratulated the governor-elect and noted his “persistence and perseverance”.

The governor-elect first contested the Ondo governorship election in 2012, fully backed by Mr. Tinubu, but came third, trailing Mr. Oke of PDP then, and the outgoing Governor Olusegun Mimiko, who then used Labour to clinch a second term.

Bola Tinubu
Bola Tinubu

In his reaction, Mr. Tinubu also extended congratulations to Mr. Buhari whom he called “the national leader of the party whose stature and dignity helped guide the APC to another victory…”

Mr. Ambode also congratulated Mr. Akeredolu, just after Mr. Tinubu’s reaction on Sunday, and charged the governor-elect to pursue unity of Yoruba through regional integration and economic transformation of the south-west. But Mr. Aregbesola has not issued any public reaction as at the time of filing this report.

The Afenifere and Mr. Tinubu have been on divergent paths since the latter’s tenure as Lagos governor.

Afenifere was the socio-cultural organisation behind the AD in 1999, as Egbe Omo Oduduwa was for the Action Group led by late Obafemi Awolowo in the 1950s.

However, the group did not back the AD candidate in the Ondo election because of the perceived support Mr. Oke enjoyed from Mr. Tinubu.

APC asks Wike to refund N2bn he allegedly donated to Ondo PDP

Following the loss of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, in the Saturday’s governorship election in Ondo State, the Rivers State Chapter of the All Progressives Congress, APC, has admonished the State Governor, Nyesom Wike to reclaim the N2bn he allegedly donated to the Ondo Chapter of the PDP.


Addressing APC supporters in Port Harcourt, the state capital shortly after its party candidate in the Ondo governorship election, Rotimi Akeredolu, was declared winner of the Saturday’s election, APC alleged that Wike is playing father Christmas with the state’s funds, adding that the money should be returned to the coffers of Rivers State.


The Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, declared Akeredolu of the APC winner of the 2016 governorship election  after polling 244, 842 votes to beat his closest challenger, Eyitayo Jegede of the PDP who polled 150, 380 votes.


The Rivers State Publicity Secretary of the APC, Senibo Chris Finebone said, “It is unfortunate that Gov. Nyesom Wike is still playing Father Christmas with the commonwealth of Rivers people for his personal egoistic political voyage despite that the governor has cancelled hundreds of overseas scholarships and the students repatriated home among other important programmes.


“Agriculture is in its worst state since Rivers State was created. Songhai Farm is gone; the Banana Farm at Tai is gone; RSSDA is now a ghost of its former self with the staff owed 17 months salaries. The various fish farms at Buguma, Andoni and other places that provided jobs for thousands of Rivers people are now history.


“It saddens the heart that our governor prefers to neglect important matters calling for attention at home but rather lavish our commonwealth on his personal political pursuits. Can you imagine that Gov. Nyesom Wike willingly donated a whopping N2bn to the Ondo State chapter of the PDP? It is horrible, mind-boggling and indefensible.


“Just like in the case of Edo, the PDP has lost and the governor should not wait to be reminded to return the N2bn back to the treasury of Rivers State immediately.


“Whereas the PDP has states like Akwa Ibom and Delta that collect high monthly federal allocations, it is only Gov. Wike that plays the party’s godfather. So far, he has wasted billions of Naira hosting two failed national conventions of the PDP in Port Harcourt. He has profligately donated billions of Naira belonging to Rivers people to faraway Bayelsa, Edo and Ondo PDP chapters for purposes of elections while medical workers, pensioners and teachers are owed back home.


“Is it that Rivers State has been conquered by a small band of buccaneers led by Gov Wike and genuine elders are keeping quiet?”

Tinubu speaks on Akeredolus victory in Ondo.

Former Lagos State governor, Bola Tinubu, on Sunday congratulated Rotimi Akeredolu, the winner of the governorship election in Ondo State.

Mr. Tinubu had been opposed to Mr. Akeredolu’s emergence as candidate of their party, APC, alleging irregularities in the party’s primaries.

The former governor and his key supporters were conspicuously absent during Mr. Akeredolu’s campaign rallies.

However, on Sunday, few hours after Mr. Akeredolu was declared winner by the electoral commission, INEC, Mr. Tinubu asked party members to close ranks “for the good of our party and its progressive ideals.”

Read Mr. Tinubu’s full statement below:

Following the announcement by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) with regard to the governorship elections in Ondo State, I extend congratulations to Mr. Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, SAN. on the outcome of the election and for his perseverance and persistence in seeking that office.

I must also congratulate the people of Ondo State for their generally exemplary conduct on election day and for demonstrating their will to shun the regressive politics of yesterday by returning to the progressive brand of politics that has been the trademark of the people of that state.

I congratulate all party members in the state, particularly the party leadership in the Southwest.

Finally, I must express profound congratulations to President Muhammadu Buhari, the national leader of the party, whose stature and dignity helped guide the APC to another victory that should advance the progressive aims of the party and the people.

To all the people and parties in Ondo, your election has been had and held. Now is the time that all must work for the continued development, prosperity and peace of your state and our beloved country.

I appeal to all party members including those who have been disaffected from the primary until today to come together for the good of our party and its progressive ideals.

OndoDecides: I will not congratulate Akeredolu yet – SDP candidate, Agunloye.

The candidate of the Social Democratic Party, SDP, Olu Agunloye, has said he is still studying the governorship election won by the candidate of the All Progressives Congress, Rotimi Akeredolu.


Mr. Akeredolu was on Sunday declared winner of the election with an overwhelming score of 244, 842 votes.


Mr. Agunloye came a distant fourth with just over 10,000 votes.


The head of media, Agunloye campaign organisation, Tunji Fajimbola, told PREMIUM TIMES on Sunday that the candidate was not in a hurry to accept or reject the election.




“He is still studying the situation,” said Mr. Fajimbola. “It is not wise to make pronouncements in a hurry. He still has to consult with the party.”


He said it is often the best practice to congratulate the winner of any election, but noted that Mr. Agunloye would not want to hurriedly make such pronouncements, in order not to be take a position different from his party.


“Dr. Agunloye did his best to show there is an alternative to the suffering situation of the people of the state,” Mr. Fajimbola noted.




“He offered himself and did what he should do. He is still the best option, and if the people needed a person who will rescue and rebuild, he is the best option.”


Mr. Agunloye scored 10,149 to place fourth behind Olusola Oke who scored a total of 126, 889 votes.


He based his campaign on the slogan to rescue and rebuild.

Fayose accuses INEC of rigging Ondo election for APC

Ekiti State Governor, Ayodele Fayose, has lamented the outcome of the Ondo State Governorship election, saying the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) connived with the All Progressives Congress (APC) and its collaborators in the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to rig the election before it was conducted.

He said, “Just as I would have loved to congratulate the winner, Mr. Rotimi Akeredolu (SAN), because in every contest, there must be a winner and a loser, the role of INEC in awarding victory to him in the election left much to be desired.”

The governor, who reacted to the outcome of the election in a statement issued by his Special Assistant on Public Communications and New Media, Lere Olayinka, said INEC gave the APC victory by deliberately replacing the name of Eyitayo Jegede, the PDP candidate, thereby creating legal logjam that lasted till three days to the election.

He said the PDP went to the election with its hands tied to the back because of the actions of INEC.

He said political parties, except APC, are now contesting elections against INEC.

Mr. Fayose lamented that “to sustain the ‘see and buy’ strategy and legalise money politics, the APC-led federal government deliberately created poverty in the country so as to continue to enslave the minds of Nigerians with peanuts to get their votes on election day, saying; “Dibo ko sebe (vote and collect money to cook soup) was the slang used by the APC in the Ondo State election and that only worked because the APC federal government have put Nigerians in abject poverty.”

He said, “Even though INEC allowed what appeared like a free and fair atmosphere on the Election Day, the election had been won and lost before it was held.

“For instance, INEC that witnessed the PDP primary election that produced Mr Eyitayo Jegede succumbed to pressure from the APC cabal to replace him with Jimoh Ibrahim, who did not take part in any primary election known to the Electoral Act.

“What could anyone have done under 72 hours in an election that was heavily monetised by the APC?

“The whole process was a deliberate sabotage by INEC, which has totally bastardised the electoral process.

“Obviously, all these shenanigans are geared towards turning Nigeria to a one part state by weakening all opposition parties ahead of the 2019 general elections but I can assure Nigerians that this will not last because the people will always be defeat tyranny.”

OndoDecides: Civil society groups say INEC performed well.

The Independent National Electoral Commission has earned high ratings for its conduct of the just concluded Ondo State governorship election won by the candidate of the All Progressives Congress, Rotimi Akeredolu, according to separate reports by two civil society organisations – Youth Initiative for Advocacy, Growth and Advancement, YIAGA, and Nigeria Civil Society Situation Room – that observed the election

But the reports also indicted politicians, without mentioning names though, for bribing voters with monetary inducement in some areas in the course of the election.

In its preliminary report on the Saturday election, YIAGA scored the electoral commission according to processes of setting up polling units, accreditation, voting, counting and posting of results at polling units.

According to the report signed by the body’s director, Samson Itodo, the polling process afforded the Ondo electorate a largely credible opportunity to exercise their right to vote.

The report read: “YIAGA noted an improved deployment of INEC poll officials and materials as compared to recent off-cycle gubernatorial elections, which saw 65 per cent of polling units open by 7:30 a.m., and accreditation and voting begun by 10:00 a.m. at 95 per cent of polling units. Our observation also revealed that card readers were used throughout accreditation in 96 per cent of polling units.”

Describing its methodology, YIAGA said it deployed 340 stationary and 23 mobile citizen observers to a representative random sample of 300 polling units.

On adherence to electoral rules, YIAGAA said, “perhaps most significantly, no voter at nearly 100 per cent of sampled polling unit was accredited to vote without a permanent voter card (PVC).”

Starting with the Benue South senatorial rerun poll held early 2016, INEC switched to accrediting voters and allowing them cast their votes simultaneously.

Reporting on this recently adopted policy, YIAGA said polls ended swiftly, noting “that At 23 per cent of polling units, accreditation and voting ended before 2 p.m., and by 3 p.m., 89 per cent of polling units had completed.”

“As for the counting process, by 4 p.m., 85 per cent of polling units had completed, and by 6 p.m., another 14 per cent of polling units had completed.”

Issues still remain with the PVC and card reader’s use, said YIAGA.

“While only 4 per cent of polling units had card readers that were not used throughout accreditation, some areas of the state were particularly problematic around completing two-step verification.”

Perhaps the major downside reported by YIAGAA, secrecy of the ballot was a challenge in some areas. In 14 per cent of the polling units, the report said, voters could not vote in secret.

Also, 12 critical incident reports described voters to have displayed their ballots before placing in the ballot box, the report added. This may give some credence to allegations that voters were induced monetarily.

The interim report did not include areas were voters could not exercise their voting right secretly.

“Secrecy of the ballot is a fundamental dimension of democratic elections and INEC should continue to review its material deployment and voting procedures to allow voters to cast their ballots freely and without exposing their voting preference,” the report noted.

YIAGA also reported 61 critical incidents, including cases of buying votes, confirmed through its “Critical Incident desk as part of its State Information Centre to receive urgent messages from its 340 stationary observers.”

“The most frequent incident reports recorded by #WatchingTheVote citizen observers related to vote buying and bribery (17), card reader malfunction (13), voters publicly displaying their ballots before placing in the ballot box (12), and intimidation or harassment of voters, poll officials or party agents,” said the report.

Similar concern over inducement of voters was raised by the Situation Room.

According to its convener, the practice of paying voters to induce support posed threat to Nigeria’s democracy.

He noted that the Situation Room observed in Polling Unit 005, Ward 01, Akoko South East and Polling Unit 005 Ward 03 in Idanre councils respectively, report of police officer found collecting envelope from party agents.

But like YIAGA, Situation Room also commended INEC for the “professionalism displayed.”

The candidate of APC, Mr. Akeredolu, scored 244,882 votes to emerge winner in the election, coming ahead of Eyitayo Jegede of Peoples Democratic Party who polled 150,380 votes.

Olusola Oke of Alliance for Democracy came third with 126,889 votes.

Ondo election: INEC already prepared the results – Fayose

Ekiti State governor, Ayodele Fayose has alleged that the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC)  has planned with the All Progressives Congress (APC) to rig the Ondo governorship election.

In a statement on Friday, Fayose said INEC staff already have the result they will be announcing to Nigerians.

The governor also wondered why the Returning officer and other key staff are being made secret by the commission.

The statement read; “At the early hours of today, information came in that the Vice Chancellor of the Federal University, Oye Ekiti (FUOYE), Prof Kayode Soremekun, who was the INEC Returning Officer in the recently concluded Edo State governorship election that is still a subject of litigation, will also serve as the Returning Officer for the Ondo State election.

“The questions that came to my mind were; is Prof Kayode Soremekun the only Vice Chancellor in Nigeria? Is FUOYE the only federal university

in Nigeria? Is Ekiti the only State where INEC can find Returning Officers?

“Definitely, INEC is up to a sinister game on the Ondo State election and it is obvious that the electoral commission is working with the All Progressives Congress (APC).

“This belief was further made manifest by the response of Prof Soremekun to a SMS and a call, saying that he was only being used as decoy by INEC.

“This was further corroborated by the INEC Resident Electoral Commissioner in Ondo State, Mr Olusegun Agbaje, who said on television that identities of those to be used as Returning Officers are being kept secret.

“Obviously, it is clear beyond any doubt that INEC is only trying to make a volte-face, after its sinister motive of using the same people it used to rig the Edo State election was exposed.

“Electoral process should an open book that anyone can read. Sadly, less than 24 hours to the Ondo State election, INEC is telling Nigerians and the entire world that identities of those to serve as Returning Officers are being kept secret.

“Why should those that will conduct election be hidden from Nigerians? Is election now a secret affair?

“The sad reality confronting the electoral process in Nigeria today is that apart from the APC, other political parties are now contesting elections against INEC.

“It is clear that the Returning Officers already have fake results that they will announce to Nigerians as they did in Edo State.

“Evidently, democracy in Nigeria has suffered a serious setback and it will take the insistence and resistance of the people of Ondo State for their votes to count tomorrow.

“Furthermore, to sustain the planned rigging, names of some judges seen as trusted enough to give the APC favourable judgment have been compiled to be used as members of the Election Petition Tribunal. In other words, the election tribunal has been constituted even before the election is held.

Ondo Election: AD Warns INEC, Security Officers Against Manipulations

The Alliance for Democracy (AD) has warned the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and security agencies against manipulating the results of the election in favour of any party, especially the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC).

According to the statement issued in Akure, the Ondo State capital, the Director General Olusola Oke campaign organization, Bola Ilori, said any attempt to manipulate the result of the election will be resisted by the good people of Ondo State, adding that the people of the state should be allowed to choose who rules them.

The statement reads: “While we as a party are prepared for the election, we will support anything that will aid the peaceful conduct of election. However, we will not fold our ?arms and allow our destinies to be determined by people who are not only political invaders but people who have subjected our people to untold hardship.

“Also, the security agencies should make sure they don’t take side. They should deal with anybody who forment trouble. Just like we have told our people, they should not allow anybody to dictate what they will do to them but make sure they keep vigil and defend their votes.”

“We are also aware of plans to cause trouble in Akoko Land, Ondo South senatorial district and other areas considered to be strongholds of AD. If President Muhammodu Buhari cannot deliver the dividends of democracy he promised the people, he should not cause chaos in the state. He should warn INEC and security agencies against enacting a replica of 1983 political crisis in the state.”

Ondo 2016: Resist any attempt to rig, Mimiko tells supporters

The Governor of Ondo State, Olusegun Mimiko, has called on his supporters to resist an alleged attempt by the Independent Electoral Commission, INEC, and the All Progressive Congress, APC, to subvert the will of the people and rig Saturday’s gubernatorial election in the state.

Mr. Mimiko, who was speaking during a press conference at the Dome in Akure, the state capital, on Friday said INEC has perfected plans to “deliver ill-fated results for the APC candidate.”

He alleged, as did the spokesperson for his Peoples Democratic Party, Banji Okunomo, that they have uncovered an arrangement by the INEC to use “the same team of election ad-hoc staff which masterminded the controversial Edo election” to rig the election in the state.

“I have to say this here and now that our people will not accept the rigging of the process unleashed on Edo. We reject unequivocally the mission of this team on our state,” said Mr. Mimiko, looking very agitated.

“In Edo State, they did not only call off collation (early), party agents, observers and journalists were ordered out of the collation centres allowing for final subversion of the will of the electorate. We shall not allow such ungodly process to be repeated in our state,” he said.

The governor alleged that INEC violated its own laws to make sure that its preconceived plans for the election come to past.

“Effort has been concerted by INEC and forces within the APC to prevent the emergence of a credible and electable candidate in Ondo state. For the avoidance of doubt, this ungodly process started when INEC in flagrant violation of extant laws governing elections removed the name of Eyitayo Jegede on the basis of a Justice Okon Abang order that has since been declared as a fraud at the Supreme Court and Court of Appeal.

“We wonder why INEC would remove the name of a man who emerged from a party primary that was conducted in a free, fair and open environment and by legitimate organs of the party where INEC itself was represented, with another name from a process that was illegal and by people not known to law.

“INEC discarded all legal advice not to substitute Eyitayo Jegede by its own chosen consortium of lawyers because Eyitayo Jegede was the legal and proper candidate of PDP.”

The Supreme Court on Thursday upheld the decision of the Court of Appeal on Wednesday stating that Mr. Jegede was the legitimate candidate or the PDP.

Mr. Mimiko said INEC only replaced the name of Jimoh Ibrahim, the factional candidate of the PDP with that of Mr. Jegede, after the Supreme Court’s ruling.

He added that the PDP has not been given the opportunity to submit the names of its party agents or even the opportunity to raise funds to campaign

He questioned why INEC insisted on going ahead with the election on Saturday when it still has up to January to conduct the election. He said INEC’s insistence showed that it was working with powers with the APC to rig the election.

“Several other hurdles were placed on the way of the PDP candidate Eyitayo Jegede to the extent that he did not become a candidate until about 48 hours to his own election.

“INEC did not release the list on the voters register to PDP until yesterday in clear infraction of its own laws. In a free and fair contest, INEC is supposed to have released the electoral register so that the candidate should actually know and the party should properly organise. Under the electoral act and INEC guideline a nominated candidate should have his name published at least 30 days to the election.

“INEC denied Eyitayo Jegede to submit the names of his party agent which according to Section 35 of the Electoral Act 2010, is supposed to submit it at least 7 days before the election. Two days to the election, Eyitayo Jegede’s supporters are not sure of those parading themselves as agents of the party. In fact, we got the information yesterday that some so called party agents of the PDP held a meeting in Akoko and agreed to work with the APC.

“Those are agents of candidates that have been described as an impostors in our party. A day to the election, many of our units and wards have not received agent cards from INEC. The agents with INEC were submitted by a man who has been exposed as a fifth columnist in the election. We were expected to run a race with our arms tied behind our back. While INEC goes ahead to foist a wururu to the answer result. We would not accept.

“Forty-eight hours to the election you are saying that the election must continue willy-nilly, how does the candidate raise money for the election? Are we saying that money is not part of this process or is he expected to raise the funds within 48 hours.

“The question is why the stubborn insistence on going ahead with tomorrow. Knowing full well that they still have up to January under the law to conduct this election. We shall not take it. In this instance, injustice stares us in the face and we are being treated by INEC and all the agents and the powers that control them, the power that sent them obnoxious phone calls to act outside the law, we are being treated like slaves and a conquered people in our own country, we will no longer take it. INEC is being forced to subvert its own process.

He, however, called on the people of the state to remain peaceful but to be firm in resisting any attempt at rigging the election at the polling unit or the collation centres.

BREAKING: Ondo APC chieftain ‘killed’

Afolabi Olaposi, a chieftain of All Progressives Congress, APC, in Owo, Ondo State, was killed by unknown gunmen on Thursday night in Owo, the party said.


The party said in a statement issued by its Publicity Secretary, Abayomi Adesanya, on Friday in Akure that Mr. Olaposi was shot dead on his way home after attending a meeting of the party in preparation for the governorship election.


“Olaposi, who is one of the leaders of our party in Igboroko Ward 1, Owo, was also an ardent supporter of our Governorship Candidate, Mr Rotimi Akeredolu (SAN).


“He was a perfect gentleman who was committed to the development of the party in Owo and Ondo State in general.


“The assailant also went to the house of Chief Jamiu Ekungba, an APC aspirant in the Sept. 3 Primary, and vandalised seven vehicles in his compound.


“Ekungba was not to at home during the attack.


“We believe those calling for the postponement of the election and threatening a repeat of 1983 violence were behind these dastardly acts.


“We call on security agents in the state to fish out those behind these acts and ensure the protection of our people before, during and after the election,’’ Mr. Adesanya said.


Speaking in a telephone interview, the spokesperson for Ondo State Police Command, Femi Joseph, said: “ I don’t have the details of the incident now, but the Deputy Inspector General (DIG) in charge of the election will speak about it later’’.


The Independent National Electoral Commission has fixed Ondo Governorship Election for Saturday.

Akeredolu Accuses Oke Of Thugs Importation To Cause Violence

The Aketi Campaign Platform, the campaign group of the candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), in Ondo State, Rotimi Akeredolu (SAN), has raised the alarm over alleged importation of thugs from Lagos and Osun states for attacks on APC members and cause violence in the Saturday governorship election.


A statement by the spokesman of the campaign platform, Soji Alakuro, alleged that the thugs were being sponsored by Lagos and Osun governments in alleged active connivance of the governor of Ekiti State, Ayodele Fayose, to unleash violence on Ondo State to help the candidate of the Alliance of Democracy, Olusola Oke, in the weekend governorship election.


Alakuro expressed dismay at the desperation of Lagos and Osun States’ governors in Ondo State election, wondering while the governors elected on the platform of APC would be working against their party in favour a party that had no roots and no single councilor across the country.


Akeredolu’s spokesman added that Fayose’s connection was baffling, wondering while a governor elected on the platform of PDP would abandon his party to work for the success of the opposition party in Ondo State.


Berating the three governors for their acts of desperation in Oke’s support, he said AD’s allegation of rigging against the Minister of Solid Minerals and Steel Development, Dr Kayode Fayemi; Works and Power Minister, Babatunde Fasola, Kaduna Governor Nasir el-Rufai was a smokescreen to cover their alleged evil plan.


He added that the latest discovery followed alleged deployment of N10b by Lagos State government to help Oke win the election “to allow Lagos and Osun axis control the economic and political destiny of Ondo State people”.
He said: “We have it on good authority that fierce-looking thugs are being housed at Oke’s expansive home and other adjoining streets in Ijapo Estate.


“Members of the public can recollect that media reports had earlier indicated that Governor Seriake Dickson of Bayelsa State working with Fayose had earlier ferried suspected Niger Delta militants to Ekiti State during his last visit to Ondo and Ekiti states in readiness for deployment for Ondo election.


“Reports indicated that Dickson was allegedly coordinating the recruitment of the militants from the Niger Delta while Fayose is complementing this with the deployment of a factional local ethnic militia called OPC under a disguised name of ‘Vigilante’ all lodged in Ekiti State Government House for onward deployment in Ondo State to cause violence to rig election in Oke’s favour while they take over the media to turn around that APC is planning to rig.


“What the desperados are doing is called reversed psychology, where planners of evils accuse the innocent of planning evils.


“They had earlier disbursed billions of their state funds to back Oke, part of which they spent to book all the hotels in Akure to enable their thugs lodge there.”


He urged security agents to comb all hotels in the state capital to fish out the thugs that were allegedly armed to disrupt Saturday’s election “if it does not go Oke’s way”.


Assuring voters that security agents would protect them from “desperate acts of outside sponsors with the eye to control Ondo’s economy,” he charged Ondo people to resist attempt by Oke to sell Ondo State to “outside sponsors who are desperate to recoup their money through manipulation of contracts and appointments”.


Urging voters to vote for Akeredolu as “independent-minded candidate who is also sincere about the development of the state and its citizens”, Alakuro said: “Media reports as contained in Thisday newspaper of November 18, 2016 indicated that Oke has ceded the positions of the SSG, chairmanship of OSOPADEC), commissioner for finance, commissioner for works, commissioner for local government and chieftaincy affairs, commissioner for health and the headship of Ondo State Board of Internal Revenue to his Lagos and Osun sponsors.


“Other positions ceded by Oke to Lagos and Osun in his deal with his sponsors, according to the newspaper, include six caretaker committee chairmanship positions, two per senatorial district; four special advisers, while Aregbesola’s former Special Adviser, Bola Ilori, is tipped for Secretary to State Government (SSG).


“Lagos-based chartered accountant, Mr Adebo Akinbobola, according to the report, will take the position of commissioner for finance while one Dr Taiwo Malumi is chosen by the former Lagos governor for the chairmanship of OSOPADEC.”


Warning the voters against sale into slavery, he urged them to vote for Akeredolu “who emerged as APC’s candidate through due process of people’s support” and who would work in the interest of Ondo people and not for any outside sponsors.

Ondo Elections, PDP and the Tragedy of Mofetoism, By Simbo Olorunfemi

The INEC plane is in full flight, other passengers have done their bit, already looking forward to the point of arrival. The seat-belt light is on, as the weather is stormy, as the pilot is doing his best to navigate at such altitude, thinking of even going higher, to avoid a crash. Now, the PDP is up on its feet, yelling at everyone and no-one – “Mo fe to! INEC, Mo fe to!”

“Know who you’re dealing with – Do not offend the wrong person” – Robert Greene

The Peoples Democratic Party is at it again. The PDP is desirous of dispersing upon the land fruits harvested from the many trees of affliction in its backyard. One would think that a party which lays some ridiculous claim to being the largest party in Africa and made public its boastful intention to rule for all of 60 years, only to be booted out of power in such a manner, will embrace sobriety and engage in some form of deep introspection. Not the PDP. Rather, the party has been going from one rapturous round of crisis to another on a journey towards implosion. It seems to be a mission that it must execute for the sake of its inglorious past. We can only wish the party well on its journey.

But that must be the least of the party’s problems. The principal one seems to be its self-righteous obsession with blaming everyone, but itself, for its misfortune. It will put fire to its own hut and run out screaming the name of another party, the media or judiciary as the instigator of the fire. It will even go to the length of accusing a President Barack Obama of a hand in a failure whose seed it planted and watered with sixteen years of impunity. That is the Peoples Democratic Party.
Not too sure if Governors Wike, Fayose, Mimiko and other PDP leaders who brought in Ali Modu Sheriff in as the Party Chairman, through some shrewd calculations and alleged subterfuge, have read ‘The 48 Laws of Power’. If they have, they must have forgotten Law 19 in electing to turn their backs on the man they brought in through the window. In an advisory, seemingly issued with the PDP Leaders in mind, Robert Greene cautions that “there are many different kinds of people in the world, and you can never assume that everyone will react to your strategies in the same way. Deceive or outmanoeuvre some people and they will spend the rest of their lives seeking revenge. They are wolves in lambs’ clothing. Choose your victims and opponents carefully, then – never offend or deceive the wrong person.”

By now, it must be clear to the PDP leaders, even as they refuse to admit it, that in Ali Modu Sheriff, they picked on the wrong person to offend. When the man told them, through one of his surrogates, that you cannot remove a man’s trousers in the market and seek to replace it in the room, they probably did not understand his point. The man has become such a tricky bone in their throat, playing tricks with their mind that it is unsure, even now, if the decision of the Court of Appeal overturning Justice Okon-Abang’s decision will be the end of the matter with Sheriff.

Mofetoism is an overwhelming desire to engage in acts that might be unsafe, personally injurious, riotous or indecorous, even at the risk of breaking the law and putting others at risk before the law, while inebriated. The immediate give-away symptoms include refusal to take responsibility for one’s action, shifting blame to others, throwing tantrum, issuing threats, generally being unruly…

Over time, we have struggled with the right diagnosis of the problem with the PDP. But with the generous help of MRI and CT scan of the self-inflicted crisis of the party in the Ondo election, we finally have hope that we might be heading in the right direction, especially with the tell-tale signs and symptoms that can be seen. From the preliminary report before us, it would seem that the PDP is afflicted with a chronic form of what is known as ‘Mofetoism’.

It is important to understand what this is. Mofetoism is an overwhelming desire to engage in acts that might be unsafe, personally injurious, riotous or indecorous, even at the risk of breaking the law and putting others at risk before the law, while inebriated. The immediate give-away symptoms include refusal to take responsibility for one’s action, shifting blame to others, throwing tantrum, issuing threats, generally being unruly, insisting on having one’s way at all cost, irrespective of what the consequences might be for the person and others around him.

Mofetoism, in different forms, is increasingly becoming rampant in many parts of the world. People are opting for that which might not necessarily be in their own interest, defying formidable odds in the process. The increasing embrace of ultra-nationalism and rise in the power base of far-right extremists has been cited as proof that Mofetoism is not another African disease. BREXIT has been cited as one manifestation of an indication of Mofetoism in Britain. The recent victory by Donald Trump is being studied by some scientists for signs of Mofetoism. The most unnerving aspect of the disease is the tendency on the part of the victim to trigger crisis that might go far beyond the immediate environment where the match is struck.

The symptoms of Mofetoism are with us in Nigeria, every day. Some say ours is chronic, but there is no firm agreement on that. There is the compulsion to engage in selfish acts that put others at risk – reckless driving on the road, cheating others, refusing to switch off the phone while in-flight, unruly behaviour in public places, messing up the environment, rigging the system, stealing public funds, corruption, etc. According to recent findings, all of these are manifestations of Mofetoism.

Everyone has to pay the price for its own tardiness – that is the hallmark of Mofetoism, which made governance of Nigeria in the hands of the party a fiasco. Displaying that unruly sense of entitlement, party leaders are yelling – PDP! Mo fe to! Jegede has had the ticket for almost three months and has had ample time for preparation before Ibrahim showed up late last month.

But it is the PDP that researchers are most worried about, as it does seem as if the party is battling with a chronic form of Mofetoism; possibly a terminal case. Drunk on some cheap Wadata brew, the party has been carrying on as if permanently drunk since 2015. It has insisted on acts injurious to itself and others, while blaming everyone for it. See the mess it has created for itself and everyone in Ondo state, yet it won’t even take responsibility for this. It is now asking that the elections be postponed by another two weeks over a needless crisis it foisted on itself.

The INEC plane is in full flight, other passengers have done their bit, already looking forward to the point of arrival. The seat-belt light is on, as the weather is stormy, as the pilot is doing his best to navigate at such altitude, thinking of even going higher, to avoid a crash. Now, the PDP is up on its feet, yelling at everyone and no-one – “Mo fe to! INEC, Mo fe to!”

This is a party that showed up at point of departure with two different passengers on a single ticket. Ibrahim was first let in and just at the point of take-off, Jegede shows up with a boarding pass for the same seat and Ibrahim had to be de-boarded. Now that the flight is winding down, PDP insists on taking everyone back, insisting on an emergency landing so that it can its new nappy can be properly fitted as what it has on is to the size of the first man that occupied its seat on-board. There is no regard for safety, no respect for the pilot, cabin crew and other passengers. Everyone has to pay the price for its own tardiness – that is the hallmark of Mofetoism, which made governance of Nigeria in the hands of the party a fiasco. Displaying that unruly sense of entitlement, party leaders are yelling – PDP! Mo fe to! Jegede has had the ticket for almost three months and has had ample time for preparation before Ibrahim showed up late last month. What if other passengers tow the same line as the PDP? I hope INEC does not indulge the PDP and abort this flight. The plane will soon land, the party will do well to approach the loo thereafter, to sort out its mess. PDP! Mo fe to!!

Postscript: In case you are reaching for your dictionary to confirm this definition of Mofetoism, you might not find it there, at this point. It is to Emeka Oparah that we give credit for his locus classicus on the subject of ‘Mo fe to’, delivered in London a few weeks back. Google might be of help for reference.

Mo fe to (I will like to urinate)

Simbo Olorunfemi works for Hoofbeatdotcom, a Nigerian Communications Consultancy. Twitter: @simboolorunfemi


Governorship Battle In Ondo: How Parties, Candidates Will Perform.

Despite the call for postponement by some of the parties, the governorship election in Ondo State will hold on Saturday as scheduled. There is an increased tempo of campaigns and political activities by the various actors. The drumbeats of war are dying down. The candidates are reaching out. And as the Election Day draws near, the candidates and their parties are becoming even more conscious that the voter armed with his voter card is king.

So much has gone into preparations for the elections. The Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, said on Tuesday that all was set for the exercise. According to the Resident Electoral Commissioner, Olusegun Agbaje, all the sensitive and non-sensitive materials are on ground for the election. “Ad-hoc staff have been trained, stakeholders have been sensitized and security has been mobilized.”

The race is now before the candidates, whose only goal is to win and become the next governor of Ondo State. Having emerged from their respective party primaries as victors, they are prepared to test their popularity among the electorates whose votes would determine their fate on Saturday.

About 28 political parties and their candidates are standing for the coming election. However, only four of the parties have shown seriousness in the race. This informed the invitation of only four candidates for the Ondo 2016 governorship debate which held in Akure on Monday. The candidates are Oluwarotimi Akeredolu of the All Progressives Congress, APC; Olusola Oke of the Alliance for Democracy, AD; Eyitayo Jegede of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP; and Olu Agunloye of the Social Democratic Party, SDP.


Three of the four parties, PDP APC and AD, had entered the race for Alagbaka from controversial primaries and prolonged litigations. While the APC and the AD appeared to have managed to quell the legal storms that rocked their political campaigns, the PDP’s troubles have failed to abate. The SDP, which held a modest primary, had Agunloye without any contention.

The September 3 primaries of the APC was destined for tribulations. It began its faulty march to the election with so many candidates showing interest in the ticket. Then came the endorsement of Olusegun Abraham, one of the aspirants, by a national leader, Bola Tinubu. The crisis started. It spilled over into the primaries and with allegations of fraud and doctoring of the delegates’ list, the APC was no longer a home at ease with itself. Mr. Abraham, the runner up, went to court and he is still in court, but Mr. Oke left for the AD. Ajayi Boroffice, who did not leave the party, had become withdrawn, after reaching a truce with Mr. Akeredolu to halt hostilities. But the decision of the party to have Mr. Akeredolu fly its flag stood.

Mr. Oke’s trip to the AD met with a legal backlash, as some of the old members of the party refused to recognize him as the party’s candidate. A youth group within the party protested his entrance and sudden emergence as the candidate of the party after replacing Akin Olowookere, who was earlier picked as the candidate. A youth group in the party questioned the decision of the leadership to circumvent the process of membership of the party in admitting Oke. The party’s legal adviser, Kehinde Aworele, went to court to seek the nullification of the candidature of Mr. Oke on the grounds that he was not properly elected as the flag bearer of the party. His sojourn in the courts came to an end recently when he was prevailed upon by the elders of the party to let peace rain. The legal adviser has since joined in the campaigns for the man he rejected initially.

The PDP is currently embroiled in legal intra party conflict which has distorted its hitherto smooth-sailing campaigns. Two factions of the party laid claims to the ticket to run for the office. The Ahmed Makarfi faction in the state is led by the governor, Olusegun Mimiko, and is the most formidable and better organised. It produced Eyitayo Jegede as its candidate. The Ali Sheriff camp, chaired in the state by Biyi Poroye, successfully elected businessman Jimoh Ibrahim as its candidate for the governorship election. Confident that it had followed all due process in compliance with the Electoral Act, the Makarfi group submitted Mr. Jegede’s name to INEC as the authentic candidate for the party. However a High Court decision changed that status quo as Jimoh Ibrahim became the candidate of the party. This development sucked out the steam off the campaign of Mr. Jegede, who had started his run earlier than the rest of them. He rode on the wings of the state government as the anointed of the government and governor, Mr. Mimiko.  His campaign train thinned out as the legal tussle to reclaim his place on the INEC list of candidates lasted.

Mr. Jegede through the ordeal, although relocated to Abuja to focus on the legal battle, continued to reach his supporters through radio jingles. He had no time for large rallies and city-to-city rides, to assure the people to vote for the PDP. A strong supporter of Mr. Eyitayo’s PDP, Moses Adekunle, had complained that the fears within his camp are that should the people vote for the PDP and the court fails to deliver judgment in his favour, the unintended outcome of a Jimoh Ibrahim governorship, would, as he said, “inflict pain and hardship” on the people of the state. Some of his supporters had moved to other parties. Yet others sat on the fence, hoping that a favourable judgment few days to the election could reignite the Eyitayo movement and rally him to victory. That judgement came from the Appeal Court on Wednesday and INEC has since restated that Mr. Jegede is PDP candidate.



Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, born 60 years ago in Owo, the northern senatorial district of Ondo State, is a legal luminary, whose tenure as President of the Nigeria Bar Association marked him out as an activist committed to the wellbeing of the common man.


The Senior Advocate of Nigeria was a member of the Legal Aid Council from 1989 to 1991 and became its Chairman in 2005. He was a member of the Governing Council, Nigerian Institute of Advanced Legal Studies between 2008 and 2010, a member of Council of Legal Education, a member of Council, International Bar Association and Pan African Lawyers Union during the same period. He currently serves as NBA representative in the National Judicial Council, NJC.
Mr. Akeredolu was the governorship candidate of the Action Congress of Nigeria, ACN, in the 2012 election. He is a greatly misunderstood character in the Ondo political landscape. He, however, enjoys the support of the leadership of the APC in Abuja. This factor informs the audacity of his supporters. Mr. Akeredolu and the APC in the state are wooing the people with the benefits of bringing Ondo State to the mainstream politics, promising developmental projects from Abuja. President Buhari has been part of the campaign and his presence is thought to possess the ability to sway votes in Mr. Akeredolu’s favour.

Some voters who spoke to PREMIUM TIMES said they are not sure if the Buhari factor would have any effect on the decisions of many of the electorates, in the midst of the ongoing recession, hardship and unpaid salaries, largely blamed on the president’s inability to turn the economy around for the better.

Mr. Akeredolu is largely popular in Owo and other parts of the northern senatorial district. But he has an albatross in the rising profile of Olu Agunloye, who appears to be the weeping boy among the four major candidates in the contest. Mr. Agunloye of the SDP is also from Akoko, in the north. Those in the central zone are still holding on to Eyitayo Jegede. Now that Jegede is back in the fray, Mr. Akeredolu may have problems with garnering enough votes in the central zone to guarantee his victory.

Mr. Akeredolu is still being hunted by the split that occurred at the party primary where he emerged as the candidate of the party. Three of the contestants who were runners up in the exercise had opposed his election. Mr. Tinubu known for his sweeping influence in the south west, has also refused to reconcile his interest with the candidate, choosing to stay away from his campaign. He had not hidden his opposition to Mr. Akeredolu and he is believed to be backing the protests against him from within.

Aspirants Abraham and Borrofice, believed to be allies of Mr. Tinubu, although still in the party, refused to identify with Mr. Akeredolu in his campaign to win the election. They refused to appear in any of the rallies along with other aspirants.

They were also absent at the meeting the other defeated aspirants had with President Muhammadu Buhari last Saturday in Akure. This negative signals point to the rumoured  anti-party posture of the aggrieved aspirants. The attendant rifts and conflicts would appear to have weakened the party, coupled with fractionalization and a gale of defections to other parties.

Other political parties have voiced their fears that the election may be rigged in his favour using the federal might. But if the pledge of the police and the INEC to ensure transparent, free and fair election on Saturday is anything to go by, then Mr. Akeredolu will need to do more than the anti-corruption campaign to curtail the rising popularity of Olusola Oke, who could be his major threat to clinching the trophy of Alagbaka.


Olusola Oke, a native of Ilowo, Ilaje Local Government Area of Ondo State, is a lawyer by profession, having been called to bar in 1987. He has held several positions in the Ondo State government before he was elected a member of the House of Representatives (Ese-Odo federal constituency) in 1992 on the platform of the Social Democratic Party.


In 1999, he was appointed a member of the board of the Niger Delta Development Commission, NDDC, to represent Ondo State. He was appointed the Chairman of the Ondo State Oil Producing Areas Development Commission, OSOPADEC. He is a one-time National Legal Adviser of the PDP. He contested the 2012 governorship election under the PDP and lost to the incumbent governor who was then in Labour Party. His sojourn in the PDP followed the failure of Goodluck Jonathan to return as President in 2015. He had complained of the discomfort created by the defection of Mr. Mimiko to the party, which resulted in realignments and power blocs within the party.

Mr. Oke left the PDP for the APC. However, after the APC’s controversial primaries where he came a close third, he joined the AD.

He began his campaign on a wobbling note because his new party lacked structures and personalities to help drive and sell his candidature. It is believed by many that with the support of Bola Tinubu and his allies, his campaigns have risen in strength and lengths to endear him to the people of the state. This is buttressed by the fact that a loyalist of Mr. Tinubu, Bola Ilori, a leading politician in Ondo West, where Mr. Mimiko hails from, is the Director General of the Oke Campaign Organisation.

The colourful billboards and large banners found nearly in all the nooks and crannies of the state, coupled with the huge crowd he is able to mobilise at his different rallies, suggest that his campaign is well funded. Mr. Oke himself has denied the allegation that he was receiving funding from Mr. Tinubu for his campaign.

“Tinubu is in the APC and I am in the AD, our paths do not cross and he cannot be funding my election,” Mr. Oke said, while responding to a question at the governorship debate on Monday. The fact is that Mr. Oke has risen from a struggling candidate in the race to a strong force in the entire equation. This is due largely to the dwindling fortunes of the PDP.

Politically, the southern senatorial district, which is his traditional home, is a PDP stronghold. He is now faced with the trouble of sharing the votes in the region with the wounded Mr. Jegede backed by the incumbent Governor Mimiko. Several people believe that Mr. Oke stood no chance of winning the region with the Mimiko factor. It is, however, arguable that Mr. Oke would take the misfortunes that befell the PDP to take adequate control of the area before Mr. Jegede fully bounces back to reckoning.

His new following in the south also results from the fact that he is traditionally a PDP person, who only left the party to actualise his dreams to become the governor of the state.

With his state wide political structures and financial resources available to prosecute the governorship race, the 60-year-old politician has a brighter chance of emerging victorious at the polls on Saturday. However, he has the formidable force of APC’s Mr. Akeredolu and a wounded Mr. Jegede to contend with. Going past Mr. Akeredolu at the polls could be Mr. Oke’s major task.


Olu Agunloye hails from Erusu-Akoko. He emerged the governorship candidate of the SDP for the November 26 governorship election in Ondo State through a party primary where he was the only aspirant. However, his candidacy was endorsed by 291 of the 310 delegates from the 18 LGAs of the state.


He was also the pioneer Corps Marshal of the Federal Road Safety Commission, FRSC. He is a former minister of power under the administration of ex-President Olusegun Obasanjo. Before then he had had a stint in the academia and distinguished himself as a scholar.

His campaign has been well articulated and his messages straight to the point with the view to change the political thinking of the Ondo voters who are inundated with the trends of money politics and corruption. His plan to develop the state through industrial revival has been considered well proposed and realizable.

But his performance at the polls on Saturday could be affected by the fact that the SDP is weak in the state. Except Olu Falae, the national leader of the party, whose name came up on the list of beneficiaries of the Dasukigate, the party lacks other prime movers who could give it the tonic to woo voters.

His record of changing parties, especially his defection from LP to ACN and back to LP shortly before and after the 2012 governorship election in the state, respectively, has been seen as another weak point.

The obvious lack of funding of the Agunloye campaign when compared with the three other contending parties is likely going to adversely affect the number of votes that would be registered against his name. This is because of the mindset of people who would follow only those who are willing to part with a lot of money.

His media aide, Tunde Fajimbola, however, said his lack of funds should be a strength rather than weakness.

“People should know that if it is said that he doesn’t have money, it means that when he was minister of the federal republic of Nigeria, he did not steal, or he is so generous that he did not have so much savings to prosecute the election in the way others are doing,” Mr. Fajimbola said.

However, his choice of a female deputy governorship aspirant and his style of going from door to door to humbly woo voters are his strongest points. He certainly lags behind the APC and the AD candidates ahead of the election on Saturday.


Mr. Jegede, a legal practitioner, is the immediate past Commissioner for Justice and  Attorney General of the state.


After graduating from the University of Lagos in 1983 and called to bar in 1984, he was counsel with the law firm of Murtala Aminu and Co, Yola, in the then Gongola State and served there for 12 years before setting up his law firm, Tayo Jegede and Co with offices in Yola and Abuja in 1996.

He was appointed a Notary Public by the Chief Justice of Nigeria in 1992 and was elevated to the rank of Senior Advocate of Nigeria on December 16, 2008. He was deeply and actively involved in political cases and election petition matters, an area of law where his industry and practice is noted and respected.

Mr. Jegede, is a member of the Council of Legal Education in Nigeria, the body responsible for setting standards for legal education in Nigeria.

He emerged as candidate in the primary election conducted by the Ahmed Makarfi faction of the party with little or no resistance, as the incumbent governor, Olusegun Mimiko, had paved the way for a smooth ride for him to take the ticket. A parallel primary by the Ali Sheriff-led faction shortly after, challenged his legitimacy as the party’s candidate.

His name remained on the list of chosen candidates for the election until October 27, when INEC published the final list of candidates, as his name was substituted with Mr. Ibrahim’s on the order of a Federal High Court in Abuja. In the last 25 days, Mr. Jegede’s campaign which had lighted the entire state with colour and fanfare, was drowned in the noise of legal battles. To many of his admirers and party officials, all was over for him, as Jimoh Ibrahim held on to the ticket through legal manipulations. The Appeal Court judgment on Wednesday was a final breather for the candidate. He is now back as the authentic candidate of the PDP in the Saturday election.

But the campaigns are no longer where he left off. His campaign train was the first to hit the streets of Akure and its environs and was prepared for every battle. The governor and commissioners were all out campaigning and wooing voters for him. Many people liked him and his handsome  and gentle looks cut him out as governor to be loved. Then the crisis began.

The Publicity Director of the PDP, Ayodele Fadaka, admitted that some party persons left following him while the case in  court lasted.

“Grounds have been lost and we are calling on those who were misled to return so we can recover outperform lost grounds to ensure victory on Saturday,” he said.

The Governor of neighbouring Ekiti State, Ayo Fayose, whose comments reflected the sorry state of the Eyitayo campaign, said “This is not the best of times for the PDP, it is not the best of times for the judgment.” His conclusion was that a postponement was necessary to allow the PDP campaign in Ondo State be put back on track for it to perform well on Saturday.

While in court, Mr. Jegede retained his radio and television jingles and got some persons to move around the towns distributing his posters and rallying support for him. As Mr. Fadaka said, the campaign structure was not dismantled altogether.

He would have to rely heavily on the machinery of the Mimiko administration to kick-start his campaign which has less than 48 hours to catch up with that of Messrs. Oke and Akeredolu. His chances of emerging victorious in the polls have been narrowed by his party’s crisis and sadly too his enemies are unrelenting.


The Chairman of INEC, Mahmood Yakubu, has assured that the next governor of Ondo State will only be determined by Ondo State voters.

The Inspector General of Police, Ibrahim Idris, has also reassured that the election on Saturday will be transparent and credible. If the two crucial agencies act based on their pledges, which by implication means they would be neutral and not rig the election in favour of any candidate, then the voter can certainly cast his vote on Saturday with the confidence that only the popular candidate will win.

This is the only guarantee for peace when the new governor is eventually announced.

PDP rejects INEC’s reappointment of Edo Returning Officer for Ondo election.

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has rejected the decision of the Independent Electoral Commission (INEC) to appoint Kayode Soremekun as the returning officer for Saturday’s gubernatorial election in Ondo State.

Mr. Soremekun, who is the Vice Chancellor of the Federal University, Oye Ekiti, was the returning officer during September’s gubernatorial election in neighbouring Edo State, which the party’s candidate lost.

The PDP claimed Mr Soremekun was a party to the alleged widespread rigging during the election won by the candidate of the All Progressive Congress (APC), Godwin Obaseki.

Banji Okunomo, the publicity secretary of the PDP in Ondo State, said the party had confirmed that several officials who perpetrated the “rigging” of the Edo election were being escorted to the state capital, Akure, on Friday by policemen from Ekiti State, with instructions to repeat what they did in Edo State.

“This is uncalled for and a further attestation to the All Progressives Congress’ (APC) desperation to rig the governorship election in favour of its candidate. We will not accept this,” he said in a statement late on Thursday.
“It would be recalled that these same people were the ones used by the APC to manipulate the Edo State election which, today, is being described as one of the most fraudulent elections in the history of the nation’s democracy.”

Mr Okuomo said the APC in the state had been instructed to repeat the template it used in rigging the election in Edo State.

“It is rather unfortunate that the INEC in Ondo State would heed the instructions given by its defacto Chairman, Mrs Amina Zakari to use the Edo State template for Ondo State.

“Just like the experience in Edo State, the PDP has gathered that results have already been written for Prof. Soremekun and his team to announce after the election,” he said.

Mr Ojunomo wondered why INEC would bring back Mr. Soremekun after the controversy that surrounded his role in Edo State, when it could have used any professor from other nearby universities.

“There are so many University Dons of repute in Nigeria. If at all the INEC is constrained financially, it could still make do with Vice Chancellors of nearby Federal Universities in Osun, Oyo and even Edo States.

“Apparently, Prof Soremekun is not the only Vice Chancellor in Nigeria and there is no reason why he should be INEC’s choice again especially considering his controversial role in the rigging of the recently held Edo Election,” he said.

He warned INEC that any attempt to manipulate the result of Saturday’s election would be vehemently resisted by the people on Ondo State

“We must let the INEC know that much as Ondo State people are peace loving, we would not allow any form of misdemeanour on the part of INEC or its agents. We would resist any attempt to manipulate the election result.

“We reject any form of advanced rigging in the Ondo State governorship election and want the electoral umpire to be unbiased for the sake of peace during and after the poll.

“We remain resolute in our commitment to building our democracy. However, we call on the electorate to be at alert till the final results of the election is announced,” he said.

Conducting Ondo election on Saturday will violate the law – Jegede

The Peoples Democratic Party candidate for the Ondo Stare governorship election, Eyitayo Jegede, has appealed to the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, to postpone Saturday’s election for at least 30 days.

He said this would allow the party to submit a list of its agents in good time before the election as provided for in the Electoral Act 2010.

The Act stipulates that each party should make their party agents available to the commission, 14 days before the day of election.

The Biyi Poroye faction of the PDP had submitted a list of party agents to the commission before the expiration of the deadline for Jimoh Ibrahim, who was removed by Wednesday’s Appeal Court judgment.

Mr. Jegede, who led a protest to the INEC state headquarters at Alagbaka, in Akure on Thursday, told the Resident Electoral Commissioner, Olusegun Agbaje, that the postponement was necessary in order not to be in breach of the Electoral Act.

He also submitted a letter he addressed to the Chairman of the Commission, Mahmood Yahkoob, demanding the postponement of the election.

“It follows from the foregoing that any list of agents purportedly forwarded by one Poroye and his fellow pretenders who had been illegally parading themselves as the state executive members of the PDP, Ondo State cannot be regarded as authentic,” the letter read in part.

“As it is, the peoples democratic party has not forwarded the list of its agents to the commission.

“Whichever way one may look at the situation on ground, the governorship election of Ondo state slated for 26th November, if conducted, will undoubtedly be in breach of the Electoral Act 2010 as amended.

“It is in light of the foregoing that I request you to differ the governorship election for Ondo State for at least 30 days so as not to conduct the election in flagrant violation of the Electoral Act 2010 as amended.”

But Mr. Agbaje said INEC had gone past the issue of postponement, given that it had distributed sensitive materials to all the local governments already for the elections.

He insisted that the commission was prepared for the election come Saturday.

“We can no longer talk about postponement of the election right now,” he said. “The matter is an internal dispute within the PDP and so we cannot be talking about postponement.

“If we postpone the election, we will be losing billions of naira knowing that we have already deployed sensitive and non-sensitive materials to all the local government areas of the state.”

He said the list of party agents would be received from the Mr. Jegede and the former one would be discarded.

The materials which were supplied directly from the vault of the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, in Akure include ballot papers, result sheets and other forms that would be used to collate the results.

Mr. Agbaje said adequate security had been provided to escort the materials to the respective local government areas.

Why Ondo election should be postponed – Makarfi

The Peoples Democratic Party has restated its call for the postponement of the Ondo governorship election scheduled for Saturday, to enable it “screen and select agents for the exercise”.


The Court of Appeal, on Wednesday in Abuja, dropped the party’s candidate, Jimoh Ibrahim, and replaced him with Eyitayo Jegede, who was the flag bearer before being substitued.


Ahmed Makarfi, chairman of the party’s national caretaker committee, described the judgment as a “massive step forward”, but argued that the party deserved “a little more time to select its agents in the interest of fair play”.


“Victory comes from God, however, a bit of extension of time will be fair, especially considering the fact that it is only now that the party will begin the process of selecting its agents,” Mr. Makarfi told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), in Jos on Thursday.


Mr. Makarfi urged INEC to consider the party’s request in view of the protracted battle that had trailed the party’s candidacy.


Speaking in the same vein, Felix Hyat, chairman, Kaduna chapter of the PDP, suggested a two-week extension to allow time to select and submit names of agents.


“Agents at the election and collation centres are very crucial to fairness in any election.


“If INEC insists on conducting the election, the PDP will certainly be at a disadvantage from the polling units to the collation centres at the wards, local governments and the state levels,” he said.


Mr. Hyat commended the judiciary for restoring justice to Jegede and the PDP, and declared that the judgment had revived the party from “a near fatal situation”.


The former aviation minister called on Alhaji Modu Sheriff, former National Chairman of the party, to embrace the Makarfi group toward rebuildling the party.


“Sherriff has always vowed that he will not give up till the court rules. Now that the court has ruled, he should demonstrate party loyalty by linking up with others toward a cohesive opposition force,” he said.

Ondo Election: ”Jegede is no longer a factor in this election” – Akeredolu

The governorship candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Ondo State, Mr Rotimi Akeredolu in his reaction to Eyitayo Jegede’s victory at the appeal court said he can defeat both PDP factional candidates.

After a meeting with President Buhari, Akeredolu told Channels Television, ”The election is already settled. I don’t see any problem. I have alsways said that even if both of them [Jegede and Ibrahim] run, i’ll defeat them.”

”Jegede is no longer a factor in this election. There is nothing anybody can do, the election is this Saturday, and there is nothing they can do any longer. There is no problem at all. Just that they are throwing spanner in the works of the PDP. I don’t think PDP has a part in this election”.

Sack Justice Abang, Fayose tells NJC

The Ekiti State Governor, Mr. Ayodele Fayose, has called on the National Judicial Council to “save the judiciary by sacking Justice Okon Abang.”


Fayose, in his reaction to the Appeal Court judgment, which nullified Abang’s ruling of the October 14, 2016 and declared it as a fraud, said, “it is obvious that Justice Abang is representing the interests of some cabals.”


In a statement issued on Wednesday and signed by his Special Assistant on Public Communications and New Media, Lere Olayinka, the governor said, “In the face of these indictments by the appellate court, the NJC must wade in and save the judiciary from Abang.”


Fayose added, “…Today again, three justices of the appeal court descended on Justice Abang, describing his judgments imposing Jimoh Ibrahim as the Peoples Democratic Party governorship candidate in Ondo State and the one affirming Senator Ali Modu Sheriff as the PDP National Chairman as fraudulent.


“It should be recalled that in June, a five-member panel of the court of appeal led by Justice Morenike Ogunwumiju said Abang ‘raped democracy’ when he annulled the election of Abia State Governor, Dr. Okezie Ikpeazu, and ordered INEC to issue a certificate of return to Mr. Uche Ogah without evidence of forgery against Dr. Ikpeazu. The court went on to say that Abang embarked on a wild goose chase and that he spoke from both sides of his mouth.


“These are clear indictments on Justice Abang and in a civilised society, he ought to have resigned without the prompting of anyone. Or how can a judge that has been adjudged severally as giving fraudulent judgments and acting like Father Christmas still sit in judgment over cases involving Nigerians?


“The NJC must do the needful by sacking him forthwith so that the bench can have a new lease of life.”


Fayose commended the Appeal Court for declaring Eyitayo Jegede as the candidate of the PDP for the Ondo governorship poll.


He, however, said it was late for the party to make a meaningful impact in the election.


In another interview, Fayose, who backed the call for the Independent National Electoral Commission to postpone the Ondo election, said that was the best thing to do in the circumstance.


Fayose said, “The judgement shouldn’t have been otherwise, because you can’t cover the truth. I have said it ab initio that charlatans in the PDP are colluding with INEC and the APC to undermine our party.”

Jimoh Ibrahim says ‘nothing to lose’ in Appeal Court ruling on Ondo.

The candidate of the Ali Modu Sheriff faction of the Peoples Democratic Party, Jimoh Ibrahim, has reacted to Wednesday’s Appeal Court ruling sacking him as the party’s candidate in Saturday’s Ondo governorship election.

The Court of Appeal replaced Mr. Ibrahim with Eyitayo Jegede, candidate of the Ahmed Makarfi faction of the party.

But Mr. Ibrahim said he was certain of getting justice at the Supreme Court.

Mr. Ibrahim accused the incumbent governor of Ondo State, Olusegun Mimiko, of paying for the judgment with the state treasury.

“I have read the decision of the Court of Appeal delivered today.

“We have nothing to lose as the Supreme Court sits on the same case tomorrow.

“We shall get justice at the Supreme Court and if PDP wins Saturday election we shall have our four years mandate to rule Ondo State,’’ Mr. Ibrahim said.

Meanwhile, the Ahmed Makarfi-led faction has commended the Court of Appeal for its judgment.

Dayo Adeyeye, the National Publicity Secretary of the faction, said the judgment was proof that what transpired at the lower court was miscarriage of justice.

Mr. Adeyeye made the remark in a statement on Tuesday.

The Court of Appeal panel led by Justice Ibrahim Salauwa on Tuesday set aside the ruling of Justice Okon Abang of the Federal High Court recognising Jimoh Ibrahim as PDP candidate in the Ondo state guber poll.

The Appeal Court also ordered the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to replace Mr. Ibrahim’s name with Eyitayo Jegede.

Mr. Adeyeye said the party appreciated the Nigerian judiciary for “standing behind truth as it affects the attempt by enemies within working in consonance with some jittery and desperate opposition members.’’

He said the aim of the enemies of the party was to thwart PDP’s participation in the Ondo State governorship election.

Mr. Adeyeye said the judgments delivered by the Supreme Court and that of the Court of Appeal had rekindled the hope of the common man in the judiciary.

He said: “This shows that justice might be delayed, but will surely come provided the oppressed refuse to give up on his rights.

“The judgment delivered by the Justice Salauwa-led Appeal Court Panel which returned the validly elected candidate of our party, to his rightful place was expected.

“It was expected because we were sure that the travesty of justice carried out at the lower court will in any sane society, not stand the test of time.’’

Mr. Adeyeye added that it was gratifying to note that all the seven issues before the Appeal panel as relates to the illegal substitution of the factions’ candidate, were decided in favour of Mr. Jegede.

“This goes to prove that what transpired at the lower court was a miscarriage of justice.”

Mr. Adeyeye expressed hope that the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) would toe the line of the Court of Appeal by postponing the Saturday election by a minimum of two weeks.

He said the postponement would allow the faction’s candidate to inform the people of the state his programmes for them through campaigns.

Buhari begs Ondo indigenes – ‘It is time to vote for CHANGE’

President Muhammadu Buhari on Wednesday called on the people of Ondo State to go out to the polling stations on November 26 to cast their votes for change.

The President, who made the call in a statement by his Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Mallam Garba Shehu, said a vote for All Progressives Congress was a vote for progressive and people-oriented policies.

He said, “The right to vote is not only a civic responsibility, but the opportunity to determine the course of our lives as a people.

“A vote for the All Progressives Congress in the forthcoming gubernatorial election in Ondo State is a vote for progressive and people-oriented policies.”

The president said that since the creation of Ondo State in 1976, the people of the state have contributed immensely to the growth and development of Nigeria, especially in the domain of agriculture and education.

He said, “A vote for Rotimi Akeredolu, a renowned lawyer of guileless reputation who rose to the peak of his profession as the President of the Nigerian Bar Association, is a vote for the continued development of Ondo State.’’

Buhari said that he looked forward to a free and fair election and true representation for the good people of Ondo State.


Ondo 2016: Suit challenging Akeredolu’s APC candidacy stalled

The absence of Justice Nnamdi Dimgba has stalled hearing in a suit challenging the candidature of Rotimi Akeredolu as the All Progressives Congress, APC, candidate in the November 26 Ondo State Governorship Election.


Olusegun Abraham, a stalwart of the APC in Ondo, filed the suit at the Federal High Court Abuja, on the ground that the process that produced Mr. Akeredolu was illegal.


Mr. Abraham alleged that the process that produce the defendant as the governorship candidate was not in conformity with the law.


He also joined the APC National Chairman, John Oyegun, and the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, as defendants.


The suit is also seeking an interim order to restrain the APC from parading Mr. Akeredolu as its governorship candidate, and restrain Mr. Akeredolu from parading himself as such pending the determination of the motion.


At the resumed sitting on Wednesday, officials of the court informed parties to the suit that the judge was ill and unable to attend the day’s sitting.


Consequently, lawyers representing both parties picked December 6 as the next adjourned date for hearing of the case.


Justice Dimgba at the last sitting on November 10 had adjourned hearing of other motions in the suit till November 23.

News Alert: Justice Saulawa Sets Aside Abang’s Ruling on PDP Ondo candidate

Justice Saulawa of Appeal Court sitting in Abuja has set aside Justice Okon Abang’s ruling that gave INEC order to publish Jimoh Ibrahim’s name as Ondo PDP candidate for Saturday’s election.

The Appeal Court said the principle of natural justice demands that all sides are given fair hearing and that Abang had no jurisdiction to order INEC order to publish Jimoh’s name as Ondo PDP candidate.

More is said that Ibrahim’s so-called Ibadan primaries is a sham according to constitutional provisions.

More details soon

Ondo guber: I will be PDP candidate on Saturday – Jimoh Ibrahim

Embattled candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, Jimoh Ibrahim, has expressed confidence that his name will remain on the ballot as the candidate of the party in Saturday’s governorship election.

He said this on Tuesday against the backdrop of the Supreme Court decision, dismissing his suit seeking to restrain the Appeal Court from sitting on a matter to decide who the authentic candidate of the party is.

Mr. Ibrahim, who spoke to journalists in Akure while reacting to the Supreme Court decision, said the decision was a good development.

He said the decision had not affected his candidature, assuring that he would win the coming election.

“Has the court changed my name?” he asked when told to react to the development. “If you bring a matter before the Supreme Court and the court says you should go back to the appeal court to hear the case how does that affect me?”

He said the decision was a good development and that it had achieved what it was meant to achieve.

Asked what it was meant to achieve, he replied: “you think about it,” and burst into laughter.

He said he was confident that his name would remain on the ballot until Saturday and after the election.

He also said he would win the election under the banner of the PDP.

“It is not possible for my name to be removed for this election, it is not possible,” he said.

“Nobody can remove it, it is there and it will be there until Saturday.”

Asked how he intends to win the election in the face of other formidable candidates, he said, “We are going to win. There is no grammar about that.

“Is anybody saying no? The PDP has been here for 14 years and how can somebody come here yesterday and come and overtake us.”

The Ahmed Makarfi faction of the party in the state is, however, hopeful that the Appeal Court will sit on Wednesday and deliver its judgment on the matter before it.

The Director of Publicity, Ayodele Fadaka, expressed the assurances that the judgment would be delivered on Wednesday in their favour which would see Eyitayo Jegede return as the authentic candidate of the party.

The Chairman of INEC, Mahmood Yakubu, on Tuesday in Akure said that the commission would abide by any judgment of the Appeal Court on the matter.

He said INEC was bound by law to obey the decisions of the court regarding the matter.

Ondo: Oni Leads 6-Member Team To Coordinate APC Situation Room

The Deputy National Chairman (South) of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Engr. Segun Oni will lead a six-member team from the party’s national leadership to coordinate the Party’s Situation Room for the November 26, 2016 governorship election in Ondo State.


A statement by the party Tuesday said the decision was reached after a meeting of the Party’s National Working Committee (NWC) on Tuesday.


Other members of the team are the National Vice Chairman (South-West), Chief Pius Oluwole Akinyelure; National Vice Chairman (North-West), Inuwa Abdulkadir, Esq; Zonal Youth Leader (South West), Adedotun Oluwasegun; Zonal Woman Leader (South West); Kemi Nelson and a Party Chieftain, Hon Acho Obioma.


The Party’s Situation Room is expected to liaise with the Control Centre which will be situated at the Party’s National Secretariat in Abuja.

Ondo: Appeal Court Delivers Judgment On Jegede Today.

The Court of Appeal Special Panel on the Ondo State governorship poll has fixed 12noon on Wednesday (today) to deliver ruling on the tussle over who the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party for the election will be The Eagle Online has reported.


The Supreme Court on Tuesday gave the Court of Appeal the go ahead to deliver the ruling.


The tussle is between Jimoh Ibrahim and Eyitayo Jegede.


The Independent National Electoral Commission had recognised Ibrahim as the candidate based on the ruling of the Federal High Court, Abuja.


The ruling was delivered by Justice Okon Abang.

Ondo Election: Police Deploys 26,000 Officers, 20 Gunboats, 3 Helicopters

The Inspector General of Police, Ibrahim Kpotun Idris has announced that no fewer than 26,000 officers and men of the Force drawn from 26 mobile units would be deployed for this weekend’s governorship election in Ondo State.

The IGP stated this On Tuesday in Akure, the state capital, at a meeting with INEC officials, security operatives and others stakeholders.

According to him, special attention would be paid to riverine communities where 20 boats have been stationed to tackle any security challenge on the waterways.

He said 12 Armored Personnel Carriers (APCs) would be moved to the state while 300 Hilux vehicles have been earmarked for the exercise.

Idris also said that dogs and horses would be on standby in case of reinforcement, while 3 helicopters would also be used for aerial vigilance.

He said the police operatives would work in synergy with other security agencies to ensure hitch free exercise.


Ondo PDP Crisis : Appeal Court may decide Jimoh Ibrahim, Jegede’s fate today

The Court of Appeal will on Tuesday afternoon continue hearing in a case that will determine who the candidate of the PDP in Saturday’s governorship election will be.

Jimoh Ibrahim and Eyitayo Jegede, chosen by two different factions of the party, seek to be the candidate with Mr. Ibrahim currently recognised by INEC.

The Court may also decide who the rightful candidate is after hearing arguments from all parties.

Tuesday’s decision by the Appeal Court follows a Supreme Court ruling earlier in the day ordering the lower court to continue hearing the matter.

The Supreme Court dismissed an application filed by a factional leader of the PDP in Ondo State, Biyi Poroye, who is of Mr. Ibrahim’s faction.

Mr. Poroye, a factional chairman of the PDP asked the court to determine the jurisdiction of a panel set up by the Appeal Court President, Zainab Bulkachuwa.

The panel was created after a petition filed by Mr. Poroye’s counsel, Beluolisah Nwofor, accused the former panel led by Jummai Sankey of fraud.

Following that petition, the first panel under Ms. Sankey’s leadership withdrew their participation in the matter on November 1.

Days later, Ms. Bulkachuwa instituted the new panel, led by Ibrahim Salauwa.

But dissatisfied with the decision, Mr. Poroye, through his counsel, made another request demanding the dissolution of the new panel.

When that application was refused by the appellate court, he (Mr. Poroye) approached the Supreme Court to challenge the decision of the Appeal Court. He also prayed the highest court to compel the lower court to suspend sitting.

On October 18, the Appeal Court suspended its sitting till further directive was received from the highest court of law.

On Tuesday a five-member panel of the Supreme Court, led by the Acting Chief Justice of Nigeria, Walter Onnoghen, dismissed the application for lacking in merit.

The court also asked Mr. Nwofor to pay over N5 million as damages for abusing the panel at the appellate court.

Ondo Election: Why I Missed Governorship Debate – Akeredolu

The All Progressives Congress governorship candidate in the forthcoming Ondo election, Rotimi Akeredolu, has explained his absence from the governorship debate organised by Channels Television on Monday night.

Akeredolu had been absent from the event moderated by Channels TV correspondent, Seun Okinbaloye.

But Akeredolu, in a letter signed by Kunle Adebayo, communications secretary of his campaign organisation, said he could not attend the debate because it coincided with its organisation’s campaign schedule.

He said the debate came “at a time when our grassroots rallies are at their peaks”, adding that he was, at the time of the programme, “tucked in the deep riverine communities of Ilaje Local Government, most of which have no access to electricity to watch television”.

Olusola Oke of the Alliance for Democracy; Jimoh Ibrahim of Peoples Democratic Party; and Olu Agunloye of  Social Democratic Party, were the three candidates that were at the two-hour programme.

Full Statement

“Akeredolu Campaign Platform (ACP) regrets its inability to attend today’s governorship
debate organised by Channels Television.

“It is unfortunate that the debate is coming at a time when our grassroots rallies are at their peaks.

“As we speak, Akeredolu is tucked in the deep riverine communities of Ilaje Local
Government, most of which have no access to electricity to watch television.

“In view of the demands of this hectic campaign schedule, we therefore regret our inability
to honour Channels TV’s call for debate with the remaining time. “

20 Parties Ask INEC to Shift Ondo Election

Twenty parties have asked the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to shift Saturday’s election in Ondo State, citing insecurity.

This is coming days after the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) urged INEC to postpone the election over the legal crisis rocking the party.

The Chief Press Secretary to the Chairman of the Commission, Rotimi Oyekanmi, maintained that there was no going back on the election date. He stressed that the commission in its arrangement for the poll has gone very far.

He stated “Thank you. As I write this, INEC has no plan to and does not intend to postpone the election. Preparations for the Ondo governorship election started since March and 12 of the 14 activities planned for the poll have been carried out. Besides, the grounds for postponing any election are enshrined in the Electoral Law and certainly, such calls for postponement is not one of the grounds.

The 13th activity, the Stakeholders’ Forum, will hold today. The Commission, therefore, will not postpone the election.

Speaking at a joint briefing yesterday in Abuja, the National Chairman of Labour Party, Abdulkadir Abdulsalam, said going ahead with the election without resolving the court cases gives room for caution.

The parties said they are aware that some people who benefit from the crises situation in Ondo will vehemently oppose any consideration for shifting the election date.

“ We only call on them to take notice of the fact that elections are considered free, fair and acceptable only when the rules are followed, as we cannot afford to govern an irate citizenry eager to explode at slightest provocation, stemming from the fact that they see the government as politically fraudulent.”

INEC Won’t Postpone Ondo Governorship Election

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) says it has no plan to postpone the Ondo State governorship election scheduled for Nov. 26.

The Chief Press Secretary to INEC Chairman, Mr Rotimi Oyekanmi, disclosed this to newsmen while responding to calls by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and some other registered political parties that the election should be postponed.

Oyekanmi said that INEC had already gone far with preparations and there was no any occurrence that warranted the commission to shift the Saturday election.

“INEC has no plan and does not intend to postpone the election.

“Preparations for the Ondo Governorship election started since March and 12 out of 14 activities planned for the poll have already been carried out.

“Besides, the grounds for postponing any election are enshrined in the Electoral Law and certainly, such calls for postponement is not one of the grounds.

“The 13th activity which is the Stakeholders’ Forum will hold on Tuesday in Akure, Ondo State. The Commission therefore will not postpone the election.”

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APC Rally: No Big Deal About Tinubu’s Absence- Solomon Lalong

The Chairman of the All Progressives Congress Governorship Campaign in Odo State, Mr. Solomon Lalong, on Monday said the absence of the party leader, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, and some South West governors at the party’s rally in Akure on Saturday did not make any difference.

He said since President Muhammadu Buhari and the National Chairman of the party, Chief John Odigie-Oyegun, were present at the rally, there was no cause for alarm.

Lalong who is the Plateau State Governor spoke with State House correspondents shortly after he and the Minister of Mines and Steel Development, Dr. Kayode Fayemi, met Buhari at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.

Tinubu and Governors Rauf Aregbesola (Osun); Abiola Ajimobi (Oyo); and Akinwunmi Ambode (Lagos) were conspicuously absent at the rally held at the Democracy Park in Akure on Saturday.

Governor Ibikunle Amosun of Ogun State was the only APC state governor in the South West who attended the rally.

Tinubu and other governors who did not attended are believed not to be in support of the party’s candidate in the Saturday election, Chief Rotimi Akeredolu.

But Lalong said their absence was not a problem to the party.

He said, “That (their absence) was not a problem. We explained their absence. They sent in their apologies. You heard what happened there.

“As far as we are concerned, the President who is the leader of the party was at the rally. The national chairman was also there. As far as we are concerned, everybody was there.

“To the party, their absence did not make any difference. If a leader was not there and he has said he was not there because of ill-health, we have prayed that God will heal him.”

The governor expressed confidence that the APC would emerge victorious in the Saturday election.

He said he and Fayemi were at the Presidential Villa to thank Buhari for making time out to attend the rally personally.

“We have finished our campaign. You saw what happened at the grand finale. We are not in doubt that APC will win the election in Ondo.

“It is other parties that are scared of the APC and not APC being scared of other parties.

“We have come to thank the President for going to Ondo for the grand finale rally,” he said.

Don’t Repeat 1983 Violence, Yorubas Beg Ondo Electorate

As the people of Ondo State prepare for Saturday’s governorship election, Yoruba communities in some parts of the country have appealed to the electorate in the state to avoid a repeat of the violence that erupted between Michael Ajasin and Akin Omoboriowo during the 1983 election.

The President General-elect of the South-South, South-East Yoruba Council, Chief Adekunle Alabi, who made this plea while speaking with newsmen in Port Harcourt on Monday, expressed the need for the people of Ondo State to embrace peace during the exercise.

Recalling how lives and property worth millions of naira were lost during the politically motivated violence that erupted in the state 33 years ago, Alabi warned that a repeat of such incident could affect the nation’s democracy.

Alabi, who emerged the president general-elect of the council after an election in Port Harcourt on Saturday, urged politicians in Ondo to play by the rules of the game.

He also pleaded with the Independent National Electoral Commission and security agencies to be neutral during the governorship election so as to avoid serious agitations that could affect the safety of the people.

“The people of Ondo should embrace peace and ensure that the governorship election is violence-free. I also urge them to avoid a repeat of the violence that erupted between Michael Ajasin and Akin Omoboriowo factions in 1983.

“INEC and security agencies should do their work properly; they should be neutral and with God, we believe the exercise on Saturday will be free and fair,” Alabi stressed.

Ondo Election: I will never join APC despite my meetings with Buhari – Mimiko

Governor of Ondo State, Dr. Olusegun Mimiko, has vowed never to join the All Progressives Congress (APC), despite the controversy surrounding which candidate will fly the flag of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), in the state governorship election this Saturday.


Mimiko also explained that he extended courtesy to President Muhammadu Buhari when he visited on Saturday , because of his position as the president and not the party he belongs.


He was speaking with State House correspondents, shortly after meeting with Buhari for the second time inside the Presidential Villa on Monday


Mimiko insisted he was only there, to brief him on the state of security in Ondo, ahead of the elections this weekend.


He said: “This is my second visit to the Villa since this crisis in our party started. Like I said, as the Chief Security Officer of my state, if there is any credible threat to security, I owe the responsibility to Nigerians to apprise Mr. President of what is going on in the state.


“Mr. President was in my state to campaign for his party. I extended to him the courtesy of receiving him at the airport and seeing him off as President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, not as APC (member).


“I understand that people have speculated that this means I am going to APC. There is nothing of such. I only extended him normal courtesy that protocols demand.


“As a governor and Chief Security Officer of the state, if the President is visiting, no matter the party he belongs to, it is only appropriate for me to extend the courtesy to him. That was what I did in Akure.


“And I have also come to brief him about the security situation in my state.”

I’ll Contest, Win Ondo Election – Factional PDP candidate, Eyitayo Jegede

Factional candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Eyitayo Jegede at the weekend gave his supporters hope that he will still contest the election.

Jegede spoke at a reception organised for him by PDP supporters in Akure, the state capital, after returning from Abuja.

The former Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice had been in Abuja with his legal team battling to resolve the replacement of his name by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) with Jimoh Ibrahim.

Jegede’s appeal is still pending at the Abuja Court of Appeal, which has adjourned its sitting on the case indefinitely.

Jegede belongs to the Ahmed Markarfi faction.

Jimoh Ibrahim is of the Ali Modu Sheriff camp.

The embattled PDP chieftain said he is sure he would contest and win the election after getting justice from the appellate court.

His words: “Mark my words, we will contest and win this election.

“Let me tell you, this is not about Eyitayo Jegede alone, it is about the people of Ondo State.

“This is about good governance in our state, this is about continuation and improvement on the good things we have been enjoying in our state.

“I’m in this business to reclaim my mandate and I’m serious about it.”

The lawyer dismissed the rumour that his supporters had moved to other parties.

He noted that his supporters across the 18 local governments were still with him, adding that the love shown to him has never been shown to any candidate before.

He said: “I do not know of any candidate who will have a market in the state capital shut down because of him.

“This present distraction will soon be over and your man, your brother, your son, Eyitayo Jegede will contest and win the election.

“Keep on praying, keep on trusting God and by God’s grace we will triumph and we shall be victorious.“

Ondo PDP Crisis: Appeal Court suspends hearing indefinitely

The Abuja Division of the Appeal Court on Friday suspended all pending matters relating to the ongoing judicial battle for an Ondo State governorship ticket, pending the determination of applications at the Supreme Court.

A three-member panel of justices at the appellate court, led by Ibrahim Salauwa, gave the ruling in a brief session on Friday.

Mr. Salauwa noted that the matter had been affected by unfavourable motions from the applicants at the apex court; and the panel set up to address the crisis, under his leadership, would not want to further complicate the matter.

“We will await the decision of the Supreme Court in all the processes; no matter what they are worth.

“We hereby rule that this matter and other matters awaiting decision by this court are hereby adjourned sine-die pending the decision of the apex court,” said Mr. Salauwa.

The appellate court had planned deciding on the authentic candidate to represent the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP in the November 26 governorship election in Ondo State.

Two candidates, Jimoh Ibrahim and Eyitayo Jegede, both from the PDP had emerged from different factions of the party for the election.

While Mr. Ibrahim emerged candidate from the faction led by former Borno State governor, Ali Sheriff, Mr. Jegede was picked to be flag-bearer of the party from the camp led by Ahmed Makarfi.

The Federal High Court in Abuja, presided over by Justice Okon Abang had on October 14 ordered the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, to recognise Mr. Ibrahim as PDP’s flag-bearer in the election.

Mr. Abang’s decision was based on a previous judgement delivered by his court on June 29, where a faction of the PDP led by Mr. Sheriff was recognised as the authentic camp of the PDP.

Subsequently Mr. Jegede approached the appellate court with a request that it sets aside the decision of the lower court.

When the case was slated for hearing and determination on November 1, a factional chairman of the party from Mr. Sheriff’s camp, Biyi Poroye, accused the former panel led by Jummai Sankey of corruption leading to the introduction of a new panel led by Mr. Salauwa.

Dissatisfied with the decision of the Appeal Court President, Zainab Bulkachuwa in setting up a new panel, Mr. Poroye’s lawyer Beluolisah Nwofor asked that the panel be dissolved.

When the application was refused, he approached the Supreme Court to challenge the ruling of the appellate court and demanded that the Appeal Court stays proceeding pending his application at the apex court.

In his ruling on Friday, Mr. Salauwa said his panel had taken all its previous decisions in the interest of justice and felt it was only right to suspend sitting, given the current application at the apex court.

With Friday’s decision, Mr. Ibrahim remains the authentic candidate of the PDP for the election.

Ondo guber: You’re Not a Progressive – APC tells Oke

The All Progressives Congress, APC, in Ondo State, yesterday, accused the Alliance for Democracy, AD, governorship candidate, Chief Olusola Oke, of pretending to be a progressive with the aim of hoodwinking the electorate to vote for him in the coming election.

The Chairman of the Akeredolu Campaign Platform, Ade Adetimehin, said in Akure that Oke “was not progressive-minded but only pretending to be one by being in the AD with the aim of winning the election, using AD’s platform’’ and warned the people of the state “not to be carried away by Oke’s antics, which is to resuscitate the Peoples Democratic Party in the state and South-West states in general if he wins the governorship election.’’

Adetimehin alleged that “Oke’s spirit was still with the PDP where had spent 16 years before crossing to the APC and later the AD. He said that Oke wanted to deceive the people of the state in order to get their votes in the forthcoming governorship election.

“Our people have had enough of PDP misrule in our state and they are waiting for the real progressives party to take over the state. Oke cannot be addressed as a progressive. He spent all his political years in PDP.’’

Countering, Chairman of the Media and Publicity of the Olusola Oke Campaign Organisation, Kola Olabisi, said: “APC is full of hypocrites, who are not real progressives but people deceiving Nigerians. When Olusola Oke was with them some months ago, building the APC, he was a progressive then but now that he has been rigged out of the party, he is no more a progressive.

“They are only afraid of their imminent defeat in the election. The APC people only believe in propaganda and rigging and now we are waiting for them. Because they know their candidate is not popular that is why they are doing all things possible to tarnish Oke’s image and that can’t work for them because the electorate know their choice.”

Ondo guber: Group accuses Aregbesola of financing Oke’s election.

A youths group, Osun Youths Movement, has accused Governor Rauf Aregbesola of Osun State of bankrolling the election expenses of the candidate of the Alliance for Democracy in Ondo State, Olusola Oke, for the November 26 governorship poll.

In a statement in Osogbo by the Coordinator of the group, Yusuf Olaosebikan, the group accused Aregbesola of diverting the meagre resources of the state “to feather his expansionist political agenda” in other states while the state’s workers suffer from months of unpaid salaries.

The group said physical infrastructure has also collapsed in Osun State “because of lack of focus and reckless ambition” by the governor.

The group warned the Federal Government against granting further bailout to the state until Aregbesola was able to explain how he spent the earlier cash meant for the settlement of several months of unpaid salaries.

It said: “It is heart-warming that the Senate Committee of Local Government is set to investigate Governor Aregbesola on how he spent the last bail-out meant for salary payment, which the governor failed to comply with.

“We alerted Osun people then that we had information that the governor was more concerned about his political fortunes than the welfare of Osun people, particularly the civil servants.

“Aregbesola started his expansionist idea when he started funding Mr Ayodele Fayose’s election with the state’s fund in 2014 to cause the defeat of his own party, APC, in Ekiti State.

“After succeeding in helping Fayose, Nigerians can now see that their friendship has blossomed with Aregbe holding secret meetings with Fayose and at present extending his tentacles to Ondo State, and this time around too, helping another party, AD, to defeat his own party to consolidate on his plans for a new party where he can wield enough influence.”

Warning against starving millions of Osun State residents to advance personal political ambition, the group threatened to make the state ungovernable for the governor if he continued spending the state’s money to fund elections in other states.

It said: “We can no longer continue to watch the governor spending our scarce resources to recklessly finance the elections of his political associates in other states in pursuit of personal ambition.

“Monday hiring of more than 300 buses in Osogbo and environs to ferry hired people to Ondo State for Olusola Oke’s campaign rally will no longer be tolerated because the governor cannot be pursuing his personal political ambition while our people suffer.”

Ondo Guber: Ex-NSC boss, others defect to APC.

Barely two weeks to the governorship election, the former Director-General of the National Sports Commission (NSC), Gbenga Elegbeleye, has defected to the All Progressives Congress (APC).

Elegbeleye, who was a member of the House of Representatives on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), decamped with his supporters.

He told journalists in Akure that an “army of occupants,” who has made it difficult for the PDP to play its role as the mainstream opposition party, was controlling the political association.

Among those that defected with him were the former Chairman of Akoko South East Local Council, Mr. Ojo Victor, former Senior Special Assistant to Governors Olusegun Agagu and Olusegun Mimiko, Mr. Muyiwa Asagunla and two former members of the state House of Assembly, Mr. Thompson Otito Atikase and Adeniyi Akindele.

Akindele said he had tendered his resignation from the PDP to the ward chairman in Ayetoro Ward 3.

The former lawmaker, who represented the constituency in 2007 to 2015, said he took the decision to quit the party because of its lack of cohesion.

Elegbeleye, who was a governorship aspirant in the PDP, said he dumped the party to support the APC’s candidate, Rotimi Akeredolu.

He added that the PDP’s crisis at the state and national levels might make it difficult for it to win the governorship election.

According to him, the APC’s candidate was the best among the 28 governorship candidates participating in the polls.

He explained that Akeredolu’s stewardship as the state Attorney General and Commissioner of Justice in 1992 and as President of Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) attested to his quality.

Elegbeleye expressed the hope that Akeredolu would fulfill his promise of constructing the road to Ikare-Akoko, which Mimiko had failed to do.

He added that the entire Ikare communities were bereft of infrastructure unlike their counterparts in other zones of the state.

Lawyers walk out on Chief Judge during court proceedings.

Two lawyers, Mr. Dapo Agbede and Mr. Morakinyo Ogele, have accused the Ondo State Chief Judge, Justice Olasehinde Kumuyi, of bias over a land dispute involving members of one Olokunjuwon family before the court.

The duo stormed out of the courtroom during the court proceedings on Friday at a High Court in Akure, the Ondo State capital, after Justice Kumuyi, who presided over the case, did not allow Ogele, who is the counsel for the claimant, to have access to the record of proceedings of the court, having been recently retained by the claimant.

During the proceeding, Ogele, appearing in suit no Ak/173/2012, prayed the court to allow him have access to the record of proceedings so as to allow him to give proper representation to his client.

He also sought for an order compelling the registrar of the court to produce the certified true copy of the record of proceedings in the case to the new counsel.

Ogele said the case was initially handled by another lawyer, who discontinued his appearance after he was not paid.

Ogele stated that since he took over the legal representation, efforts to get the record of proceedings from the officials of the court had proved abortive.

Agbede also supported the motion of Ogele, saying the new counsel would not be able to give proper legal representation without the record of proceedings.

The counsel to the second, third and fourth defendants, Adetunji Oso and Ola Olawale, said the court should use its discretion.

Justice Kumuyi refused to grant the request of Ogele and Agbede.

The lawyers told the judge that they would not be able to proceed with the case because the refusal of the application would deny the clients a fair hearing.

They subsequently walked out of the courtroom with their clients, leaving the judge on her seat.

Conservationists discover Chimpanzees in Southwest Nigeria.

A survey by conservationists has led to the discovery of chimpanzees in the Omo-Shasha-Oluwa (OSO) Forest, traversing Ogun, Osun and Ondo States.

Experts described the finding through camera images as a surprise. The discovery is part of a project promoted by Nigerian Conservation Foundation (NCF) in collaboration with other conservationists working in the country. NCF is on the steering committee for the project with the Whitley Wildlife Conservation Trust, which runs Paignton Zoo.

The camera-trap photos are the first firm evidence of chimpanzees in South West Nigeria for over a decade and the discovery has been greeted with a lot of enthusiasm by conservationists.

The initiative was set up in response to the massive deforestation that has occurred in this region and the threats to the remaining wildlife through habitat loss and hunting.

The camera-traps were set by the OSO Forest Initiative’s field team as part of their biodiversity monitoring programme.

Conservationists have not seen chimps in the area since the early 2000s. There are very few populations of chimpanzees in South West Nigeria.

Although they are considered part of the Cameroon-Nigerian subspecies more commonly found near the border between those countries, little is known about them genetically.

This is the rarest subspecies of chimp, with an estimated 3,500 – 9,000 left in the wild, but only about 100 in the South West.

The OSO Forest Initiative is a partnership between NCF, Whitley Wildlife Conservation Trust and Forest Research Institute of Nigeria (FRIN) with the support of the Leventis Foundation and Environmental Resource Management, UK.

Reacting to the development, NCF Director General, Mr. Adeniyi Karunwi, said that the deployment of camera traps and the positive results coming out are signs of NCF’s commitment to conserving the nation’s forest habitats with particular attention on the OSO Forest.

“This is part of NCF’s efforts to ensure the survival of species in the OSO Forest Reserve,” he declared.

Similarly, Dr. Andrew Bowkett from the Whitley Wildlife Conservation Trust, which also funds conservation work as a partner in the OSO Forest Initiative, said it was tremendous news.

“It seemed likely that this population had gone extinct due to the dramatic increases in logging and hunting over the years. It has come as something of a surprise, as all previous reports indicated that the closest chimps were in a hilly area in a remote corner of the reserve far from where the camera-trap was set up,” added Bowkett.

He said further that the survival of chimpanzees and other large mammals in such a threatened forest so close to Lagos, considering the level of urbanization and deforestation, “gives us hope for the Initiative.”

Ondo’s Problems will Disappear if State is in Same Party With FG – APC govs

Ahead of the November 26th governorship election in Ondo State, governors elected on the platform of the All Progressives Congress, APC, on Thursday told Governor Olusegun Mimiko to start preparing to hand over power in the state to the candidate of their party, Chief Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, SAN.

The APC Governors, who unanimously spoke during the official flag off of their party’s governorship campaign in Akure, the Ondo State capital, declared that being in the same party with the Federal Government is the only panacea to the scourge of poverty, starvation, youth unemployment and irregular payment of salary that is currently plaguing the state.

Speaking one after the other at the rally which held at Democracy Park, Akure, the governors said they have resolved to win Ondo for Akeredolu through the instrumentalities of the Law and with the support of the people of the state.

The governor of Borno State, Alhaji Kashim Shetima, who was the first to speak, urged the members of the Hausa Community in the state who thronged the venue of the event to ensure that their votes are casted en mass for the APC, stating that the solution to the problems militating against the state lies only in the hands of Akeredolu.

Also in his speech, the governor of Sokoto State, Alhaji Aminu Tambuwal, said the reign of the PDP in Ondo State will end on November 26th. The former Speaker of the House of Representative urged Mimiko to either join the APC to work for Akeredolu or get prepared to be voted out.

“The wind of change currently blowing across the country will not exclude Ondo State. Ondo State will not be allowed to remain in the hands of the locust. My friend and brother, Mimiko should get prepared to hand over to Akeredolu,” Tambuwal said.

The Chairman of the APC National Campaign Committee, Governor Simon Lalong of Plateau State congratulated Akeredolu for his victory in advance. He assured him that President Muhammadu Buhari and other leaders of the party will do everything within the ambit of the law to ensure APC triumph at the poll.

The Governor also cautioned Mimiko against blaming President Buhari and APC for the substitution of his preferred choice, Eyitayo Jegede as PDP candidate, stressing that on no condition would the party allow itself to be blackmailed recklessly as it is being currently done by Mimiko.

The event, which witnessed the defection of several chieftains of the PDP led by former member of the House of Representatives and Immediate past Director-General of the National Sports Commission, Mr Gbenga Elegbeleye and NURTW chieftain, Mr. Akin Fayehun popularly known as Ade Basket into the APC, was attended by Chief John Odigie-Oyegun and all the members of the National Working Committee of the party.

Oyegun who was optimistic that his party would win the election, charged the people of the state to use their votes to send away poverty, hunger, under-development and stagnation which he said the Mimiko’s administration stands for.

The former Governor of Edo State thanked the people of the state for turning out in their large numbers to grace the flag off ceremony.

The party governorship candidate, Rotimi Akeredolu thanked the APC governors and dignitaries who attended the event, promising to focus on Job creation through agriculture, massive infrastructure and security of lives and properties if elected.

Other notable people at the flag off ceremony rally were the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Engr. Babachir David Lawal who represented President Buhari, Governors of Bauchi and Ogun State, Mohammed Abubakar and Ibikunle Amosun, Ministers of Solid Minerals; Labour and Employment; Communications, Kayode Fayemi, Chris Ngige and Adebayo Shittu.

Others were Ministers of Health, State for Niger Delta and Defense, Professors Rufus Adewole and Cladius Daramola and Mansur Mohammed Dan Alli and former governor of Ekiti State, Otunba Niyi Adebayo, Ambassadorial Nominee, Senator Olorunibe Mamora and Senator representing Ondo Central in the senate, Chief Tayo Alasoadura .

Also at the event were former Ondo State Deputy Governor, Alhaji Alli Olanusi, Senator Representing Osun East in the senate, Chief Isiaka Adeleke, APC National Vice-Chairman in South west, Chief Pius Akinyelure, chairman of the party in Ondo State, Hon. D.I kekemeke, Human Rights Lawyer, Tunji Abayomi, Director General, Akeredolu Campaign Organization, Rt. Hon. Victor Olabimtan and several others.

Ibrahim begins campaign, pledges to restore electricity supply.

Factional candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Jimoh Ibrahim, has promised to restore electricity supply in the south senatorial district of the state.

Ibrahim made the promise when he started his campaign in Okitipupa Local Council area on Wednesday.The candidate said he would ensure that the areas were connected to regular electricity supply within his first three months in office.

He condemned the “I don’t care” attitude of the outgoing administration of Governor Olusegun Mimiko to the protracted outage in the area.

According to him, the Benin Electricity Distribution Company (BEDC) had cut off towns like Oke-Igbo, Ore, Odigbo, Okitipupa, Irele, Ode-Aye, Ajapa, Akotogbo, Igbokoda, Igbotako from the national grid.

At the palace of the Jegun of Idepe-Okitipupa, Micheal Adetoye, he promised to reintroduce the boarding system to government-controlled secondary schools across the state.

He explained that only such a system could restore the lost glory and high educational standards enjoyed by students in the past.“The boarding system was what sharpened and built our educational and moral standards as students in those days, which had continued to be our guide and approach to life, both in business and political participation.

“The issue of electricity is very embarrassing and shameful. The last time I checked with the BEDC, the company said the senatorial district owed a backlog of unpaid bills of about N300 million, which made it to cut off its electricity supply.”

Ibrahim, who hails from Igbotako in Okitipupa Local Council area, said he deliberately started his campaign in Okitipupa to reawaken the consciousness of his people in Ikale land towards electing another of their own sons as the next governor of the state.

He assured the civil servants that the payment of salaries, allowances, pensions and gratuities would be the priority of his government.

Ibrahim was accompanied on the campaign by his running mate, Ebenezer Alabi, the party’s state chairman, Biyi Poroye and two former Senators from the area, Omololu Meroyi and Hosea Ehinlanwo, among others.

Why Buhari, Osinbajo were absent from Akeredolu’s rally – APC

The All Progressives Congress, APC, in Ondo State says President Muhammadu Buhari and his Vice, Yemi Osinbajo, were absent at its governorship rally due to urgent national matters they had to attend to.


APC governorship rally in the state kicked off yesterday at the Democracy Park in Akure, the state capital at about 11am but the President, his Vice and some top-shots of the party were noticeably absent from the event.


The state Publicity Secretary of the party, Abayomi Adesanya, while explaining the absence of the President, however, announced that Buhari would be in the State for the grand finale of the campaign, scheduled for November 19.


He said, “The President and the Vice President had an emergency state matter they had to attend to and so could not turn up.”


Also absent at the event was a National Leader of the party, Bola Tinubu, but his media team while explaining, said the former Lagos State Governor was currently not in the country.

Ondo 2016: Buhari, Osinbajo, Tinubu, Aregbesola absent at APC rally

The crisis rocking the Ondo State All Progressives Congress came to the fore on Thursday as top officials of the party including President Muhammadu Buhari were absent from a scheduled rally.


The rally was organised by the Ondo APC to flag off the campaign of Rotimi Akeredolu, its candidate for the November 26 governorship election in the state.


As predicted by PREMIUM TIMES, apart from Mr. Buhari, other notable absentees were Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, former Lagos governor Bola Tinubu, and governor of neighbouring Osun State, Rauf Aregbesola.


The event commenced on Thursday morning at the Democracy Park in Akure, the Ondo State capital.


Introducing the dignitaries present in order of protocol, the National Organising Secretary of the APC, Osita Izunaso, said Mr. Osinbajo was represented by his Chief of Staff.


Some serving ministers are also present at the rally.

Buhari, Other APC Figures To Flag Off Party’s Governorship Campaign In Ondo State

President Muhammadu Buhari is scheduled to visit Akure, capital of Ondo State, on Thursday to flag off the governorship campaign of the All Progressives Congress (APC) ahead of the November 26, 2016 vote.

Omo’ba Abayomi Adesanya, the Ondo State publicity secretary of the APC, disclosed the president’s appearance in a statement released to journalists today in Akure. He said Vice President Yemi Osibanjo and other national leaders of the party would join President Buhari to officially launch the governorship campaign of the party’s candidate, Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, and his running mate, Agboola Ajayi.

“The All Progressives Congress in Ondo State welcomes the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, President Muhammadu Buhari (GCFR), to the Sunshine State, for the flag-off campaign of Akeredolu/Ajayi, on Thursday November 10th, 2016.” He added, “The President’s visit is not only to campaign for the victory of his party’s candidate, Akeredolu/Ajayi, but also for his love for the people of Ondo State.”

Mr. Adesanya described Ondo as a “state that is strategically positioned and endowed with great potential of both human and natural resources for economic diversification.” The APC spokesman also revealed Governor Solomon Lalong of Plateau State, who is the chairman of the party’s national campaign committee, and Governor Rochas Okorocha of Imo State are among prominent party leaders expected to arrive in Ondo State for the governorship campaign.

Mr. Adesanya also stated that party chairman, John Oyegun, the APC’s national leader, Bola Ahmed Tinubu, Senate President Bukola Saraki, and Speaker Yakubu Dogara of the House of Representatives are also expected to be present at the flag-off campaign.

Mimiko planning to loot state treasury – Ondo APC

The All Progressives Congress in Ondo State on Tuesday alleged that the outgoing governor, Olusegun Mimiko was trying to divert government funds during the last few weeks of his tenure.

In a statement by the publicity secretary of the party, Omo’ba Abayomi Adesanya, the APC said the governors was awarding huge contracts to his friends.

He said, “The outgoing Governor Olusegun Mimiko has concluded plans to award contracts worth N62bn between November 2016 and February 2017 when he would be vacating office as the Chief Executive Officer of the State.

“Among the contracts to be awarded is the 28KM ABOTO-ATIJERE road, in Ilaje Local Government Area of the state, to the cost of N12bn, given to ZHIJIANG Construction Company Ltd, that Governor Mimiko will sign-off this week without bidding.

“The Governor’s plans is to pay 75 per cent upfront of the total contract sum without following due process as a way to embezzle the state fund and leave the treasury empty for the successor government. This is against the social contract he swore with the people.

“We were reliably informed that ZHIJIANG Construction Company Ltd is owned by a close ally of the Governor but in a matter of days, our investigation will confirm this among other corrupt plans of Dr. Olusegun Mimiko to plunge our state into serious financial debt after his tenure.”

Ondo: If we Can’t Conduct Election in One State Then We Should Forget About 2019 – Buhari

President Muhammadu Buhari has directed the security agencies to do their utmost in ensuring violence-free elections in Ondo and Rivers states.

The President who lamented the rate of violence during elections, however, said that  the 2019 elections should be forgotten if a peaceful election cannot be successfully conducted in one state.

In a statement made available to newsmen by the Senior Special Assistant to the President, Garba Shehu, it said Buhari who gave the statement at a state dinner in Benin, the Edo state capital, on Monday, also said that the forthcoming gubernatorial elections in Ondo and National and State Assembly rerun elections in Rivers will serve as a litmus test for the general elections in 2019.

‘‘What happened in the last elections in Kogi, Bayelsa and Rivers State disturbs me a lot. I think we should go beyond these actions. Why do we kill each other? Putting tyres on people and setting them ablaze,” asked the President.

‘‘I have told the law enforcement agencies, if we can’t conduct an election in one state then we should forget about 2019,’’ the President said.

Acknowledging the role played by outgoing Governor Adams Oshiomhole in ensuring the success of the APC in the last gubernatorial elections in the state, President Buhari challenged the Governor-elect, Mr Godwin Obaseki, to continue in Oshiomhole’s footsteps of providing purposeful leadership in terms of quality infrastructure, education and social services.

‘‘The publicity your predecessor has given his performance is going to stretch you to the limit. “Considering what he has done, you have to continue in his footsteps. We wish you the best of luck and will do our best to support you,’’ the President said.

On the current economic challenges in the country, the President assured Nigerians that his administration was working hard on diversification of the economy to limit the country’s over-dependence on oil over the years.

“This country has incredible mineral resources. All we need is to believe in ourselves so that we can have and leave a better Nigeria for our children and grandchildren,’’ the President said.

Election Will Not Hold In Ondo State – Mimiko

The Ondo State governor, Dr. Olusegun Mimiko, has declared that  governorship election will not take place in the state on November 26, 2016 if the issue of the candidacy of the Peoples Democratic Party was not resolved.

The governor expressed the assurance that the candidate of the Ahmed Makarfi’s faction of the party, Mr. Eyitayo Jegede (SAN),  would contest the election.


He said, “I don’t know how they will do it, it is impossible for them to deny us our right. Justice will stand and Jegede will contest this election. Election can’t take place in Ondo State without the PDP.”

Thousands Of PDP, AD Members Decamp To APC In Ondo

Over one thousands supporters of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and the Alliance for Democracy (AD) in Oke-Agbe, local government headquarters of Akoko North West in Ondo State, yesterday, defected to the All Progressives Congress (APC).

The defectors were led by their leaders, a chieftain of the PDP, Hon. Gabriel Talabi and the Secretary of AD in that council, Mr. Sunday Akindeji.

They officially dumped their old parties at the campaign rally of the APC governorship candidate, Mr. Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, SAN at Oke-Agbe.

 They were received by Akeredolu, the Director General of his Campaign, Rt. Hon. Victor Olambitan, Engr. Ade Adetimehin, Tunji Abayomi among others.

Talabi lamented the neglect of the local government area by the outgoing PDP administration in terms of roads and other social amenities.

He stressed that they have decided to join the progressive party and also believes that if Akeredolu emerges, Akoko will not be neglected.

Abayomi, promised to deliver the local government area to APC on November 26.

They thanked the defectors for their support and equally urged them to beware of the antics of desperadoes who are deceiving people around that APC had collapsed its structure with AD.

They insisted that APC remains intact in the State and it is mentally, intellectually and physically ready to end the age-long underdevelopment that had enveloped the state in the last eight years.

Credit: dailytimes

Why we won’t postpone Ondo governorship election – INEC.

The Chief Press Secretary of the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, Rotimi Oyekanmi, on Wednesday said the internal crises within the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, will not prevent the commission from conducting the Ondo governorship election as slated.

Recall that the nation’s electoral umpire had recently replaced Eyitayo Jegede with businessman, Jimoh Ibrahim as the PDP governorship candidate in the November 26 election in Ondo State.

The INEC Chief Press Secretary stated that the intra-party conflicts are not enough reasons to postpone an election under the Electoral Act, Punch reports.

Oyekanmi, “The process for postponing or shifting of elections are spelt out in the Electoral Act as amended. One of the reasons is natural disaster. No aspect of the reasons stated for this include intra-party crisis as we are witnessing in the party you have mentioned.

“Under the Electoral Act, intra-party conflict is not recognised as one of the reasons why INEC must shift the date of an election we have given notice of since March.

“As I speak today, there is no plan to postpone it. We are going ahead with the election as slated for November 26.”

Ondo PDP crisis: Counsel to Jimoh Ibrahim withdraws.

Alex Iziyon, a senior counsel to Ondo governorship candidate, Jimoh Ibrahim has withdrawn as his counsel.

Iziyon was representing Jimoh Ibrahim in his candidacy tussle with Eyitayo Jegede at the Appeal Court.

A respondent in the appeal, Biyi Poroye had accused the appeal panel led by Justice Jummai Sankey of receiving bribe in order to rule in favour of Eyitayo Jegede.

The panel had withdrawn from the case pending the determination of the allegations raised while the counsel had claimed to not have prior knowledge of the petition and condemned it.

In a letter addressed to Jimoh Ibrahim, Iziyon said he was withdrawing because of allegations made against him by Sankey.

He said, “You will recall my position was indicated by the presiding justice as having the foreknowledge of the petition written by the first respondent, despite my protest and innocence. It is in this regard that I hereby withdraw from further appearance.

“This is to enable you brief another lawyer who shall take over the file. We will forward the file and the processes to your Personal Assistant forthwith,” Iziyon said.

Stop running to Buhari over crisis in your party – Lalong tells Mimiko

Governor Simon Lalong of Plateau State on Monday in Abuja enjoined Governor Olusegun Mimiko of Ondo State to stop running to President Muhammadu Buhari for solution to the internal problems of his party, the Peoples Democratic Party.

Lalong said this while speaking to State House correspondents after he formally presented Chief Rotimi Akeredolu, the All Progressives Congress’s gubernatorial candidate in Ondo State, to President Buhari.

According to him, Buhari is the President of Nigeria and not a PDP member or chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission.

He said: “Let me say it was even wrong for them to start running to Mr. President to help them solve the problem of PDP in their party.

“Mr. President is the President of Nigeria and he is not a member of PDP.

“Even when we have problems in APC, we don’t run to Mr. President.

“If he (Mimiko) has a problem in his state, he is the governor, let him stay there and resolve the matter.

“It is a matter between PDP and PDP and those matters are in court.

“So, why should you run to the President?

“Is the President the Chief Judge of Nigeria?

“He is not the INEC chairman either.”

Lalong, who is the Chairman of the APC Governorship Campaign in Ondo State, revealed that President Buhari had endorsed the candidature of Akeredolu as the APC candidate for the election.

Ondo Election: I Will Defeat Ibrahim, Jegede – Akeredolu Boasts

The All Progressives Congress (APC) candidate in the forthcoming Ondo State governorship election, Rotimi Akeredolu was on Monday confident that he can win the two Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) aspirants, Jimoh Ibrahim and Eyitayo Jegede, put together.

He spoke with State House correspondents after he met with President Muhammadu Buhari along with Plateau State Governor, Simon Lalong at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.

Akeredolu said: “l can always tell you, people who know me, they know that I talk most times with some confidence, let me assure you here that by the grace of God, we will win the election in Ondo state.

“I can assure you I would have been happier facing both of them together, if Eyitayo Jegede was chosen as candidate and Ibrahim as his deputy, I will still win.

“Infact Jegede happens to be a friend, Ibrahim too. Jimoh Ibrahim went to Ife, so we have known ourselves for long. I have no fear about both of them. We know that we are going to win this election and I have no doubt,” he added

When asked to speak on efforts to settle the rift between him and the National Leader of the APC, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, he denied any rift with Tinubu.

He said: “I don’t have any rift with him, since the primaries you would see that as leader of the party, he has not said anything about it. He has accepted the primaries and we are moving on. So, I don’t have any rift with him at all and we are moving on.”

He said that his party in the state has already called on the security agencies in Ondo to be up and doing in order not to allow miscreants take over the state in the name of protests.

He said: “Because for instance as a governor you encourage lawlessness or people in the guise of protest because what the PDP has is a problem within the party, that should not lead to demonstration outside and you know that people are not demonstrating for any reason but because they have been more or less paid to come and do it.

“What we said is don’t allow miscreants to be out. Nobody can control the end of such demonstration. So it’s not that we are afraid, but we fear for the life and property of the people of Ondo state.” He stated

Speaking on the visit to the President, Lalong said: “A few weeks ago I was given the responsibility of leading the campaign on behalf of the National Executive for the Ondo election. And the candidate since election at the primaries have not come to be presented to the leader of our party, that is Mr President.

“So today we came in with the candidate and to confirm to the President that APC has only one candidate unlike other parties that are fighting about who is their candidate.

“We have only one candidate and that candidate is Chief Akeredolu Rotimi (SAN).” He said
He was optimistic that the APC will win the election.

He said: “Well that is not a problem to APC, since inception you knew what happened in Kogi, you knew what happened in Edo, we won the elections. It was as if it was going to be very difficult for us but we won the elections.

“Today again we are going into Ondo, all the mistake we made in other states we have corrected them, we are seeing a very smooth election, not only a smooth election but the credibility of the candidate itself is something worth selling,” he said.

The governor also faulted the visit of the out-going Ondo State governor, Olusegun Mimiko, to President Buhari last Friday.

According to him, Mimiko should have concentrated on resolving the crisis that erupted in his state.

He said: “Let me say it was even wrong for them to start running to Mr. President to help them solve the problem of PDP in their party. Mr. President is the President of Nigeria and he is not a member of PDP. Even when we have problems in APC, we don’t run to Mr. President.

“If he has a problem in his state, he is the governor, let him stay there and resolve the matter. Its a matter between PDP and PDP and those matters are in court. So why should you run to the President. Is the President the chief judge of Nigeria?” He queried

He went on: “He is not the INEC chairman either. Well Mr. President is a loyal party man. So he is answerable to the party although the president of Nigeria.”

On the response of President Buhari to the visit, Lalong said: “He has also confirmed that he has seen the candidate and is also praying for a successful election in Ondo state.”

Hold PDP, APC responsible for crisis in Ondo State – SDP

The Ondo State chapter of the Social Democratic Party (SDP) has asked security agents to be proactive in combating criminal activities ahead of the governorship election in the state.

The party made the call following protests over the release of the final list of governorship candidates for the November 26 governorship election.

Its Publicity Secretary, Mr. Remi Olayiwola, in a statement said the protests that trailed the removal of Mr. Eyitayo Jegede’s name and its replacement with Barr. Jimoh Ibrahim as the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has to do with the flag bearer of only one out of the 28 participating political parties in the election.

The SDP said that since the PDP could not put its house in order by ensuring a credible primary, other participating political parties and innocent citizens of the state should not be made to bear the brunt of the internal crisis within the party.

The party wondered why anyone would embark on protests over an intraparty crisis, adding that security agencies need to be more prompt in dealing with hoodlums trying to foment trouble in the state.

“The other day, it was the APC disturbing the people of the state, today, it is the PDP. These are political parties in government at various levels in the country. So, if there’s any violence during the forthcoming governorship election, the two parties must be held responsible,” SDP said.

It advised the people of the state, especially parents, to caution their children against being used by desperate politicians to cause chaos in the state, recalling that the negative effects of the 1983 crisis is yet to abate on the socioeconomic development of the state.

The Cable: What’s happening in Ondo State?

It was amusing seeing the pictures of Governor Olusegun Mimiko at the Presidential Villa last Friday. Not that he does not have the right to visit the president; he does, particularly with our warped federal structure wherein states are more of appendages than federating units. But his reason for the visit was funny, to say the least. The visit was like pounding on anvil that gave off no sparks, especially with his request that the president intervenes in the raging fire in Ondo State.

Mimiko is an astute politician, a great mobiliser of people and resources towards a particular goal. One does not fight former president Olusegun Obasanjo politically and beat him if he is not a strong politician and maybe only him and former Lagos State governor, Bola Tinubu, have been able to dust the ebora Owu on the political field while he held sway between 1999 and 2007. A former minister told the story of how they were unable to persuade Mimiko not to leave the federal cabinet in order to become the Ondo governor, why leaving for uncertainty, they asked him. Iroko, as he is known, however, stuck to his guns and resigned as housing minister to contest the April 14, 2007 elections. He recalled how Obasanjo was apoplectic with rage at the cabinet meeting where Mimiko tendered his resignation letter threatening that he would ‘deal with him’ but Iroko kept quiet.

A colleague who covered the governorship election for a foreign broadcast organisation spoke of how Mimiko was well loved by the people that everywhere he went with his crew, they saw how difficult it would be for the late Segun Agagu to beat him. Incredibly, INEC declared Agagu the winner but Mimiko went to court and on February 23, 2009, the Appeal Court ruled that he was the winner paving the way for him to become the first and only Labour Party member to win a gubernatorial election in our country. He assumed office the next day. On October 2, 2014 he switched to PDP after securing another term and thereby becoming the first governor in the state history to win a second term. So, as we say in Nigeria, ‘he is very much on the ground.’

But how did the 62-year old medical doctor find himself in a political mess that he has to seek refuge from a president he barely tolerates? What happened that his anointed candidate, Eyitayo Jegede, a senior advocate, did not foresee the legal landmines and thereby prepare well on how to navigate such? How come the hunter is now the hunted?  More annoyingly, the ‘PDP candidate’ recognized by INEC is a corporate undertaker with many companies or corporations dying under his watch than surviving. And that’s where INEC comes into the picture. It is interesting that the electoral body, which recognized the Ahmed Makarfi faction before the Edo State governorship election, decided not to recognize it now. Though there is the other matter that it was the state executive that Mimiko allegedly sidelined before the primaries that has been recognized now by INEC. An important observation, however, is that what do we make of INEC’s presence at the primary where Jegede emerged? On what basis was the attendance if that faction was not authentic?

Too often we do not focus on two critical players in our democratic journey as a country, INEC and the judiciary. As a country, we place so much emphasis on election that governance suffers because of it. While no one knows how the saga involving our judges will end, it is instructive that electoral victories are won in courts now more than at polling booths. What is INEC doing wrongly that candidates are seemingly more interested in going to courts after elections? Even while violence should be condemned emphatically, INEC should not push citizens into thinking it is an option. By the way, whatever happened to some withheld results after the Rivers State election by INEC? Some judgments too are baffling that even lawyers are confused on the reasoning behind them, much more disconcerting are even the judgments of the highest court in the land.

Good enough that there is an appeal on this issue but what happens if the court does not rule in favour of the Iroko faction? That’s why we should all be worried about the protests rocking the Ondo State capital. Dissent remains an integral part of democracy, but violence should be abhorred. Citizens should be free to make their grievances known in orderly and peaceful manner without killing. There’s still the unresolved matter of the accusation leveled against INEC by Mr. Jimoh Ibrahim wherein he said that some officials of the electoral body demanded for a bribe from him in foreign currency, I think that’s worth probing. It may be that it played a role in what is happening in Ondo State presently.

Ondo guber: Falana, Keyamo support INEC on PDP candidate.

The decision of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to recognise Modu Sheriff-led faction of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the upcoming Ondo State gubernatorial election, Mr. Jimoh Ibrahim, is right, frontline lawyer Femi Falana (SAN) has said.

INEC last Thursday endorsed Ibrahim’s candidature after an Abuja High Court declared him as the authentic PDP candidate.

The electoral umpire had earlier recognised the candidate of Markafi-led faction of the party, Eyitayo Jegede.

“INEC has merely obeyed a court order,” he Falana said. “INEC has obeyed an order of a court pursuant to a valid and subsisting judgement. You want INEC to disregard the judgement?”

He said it was wrong of the Markafi-led PDP to seek a restraining order from another court of equal status.

He said, “Once there’s an order, you can only go and set aside the existing one. You can’t go and start another one. That’s what causes conflicting court order.

“You can’t go and initiate a process that will set one court in collision with another. It’s primitive.

It’s not done in any civilised society.

“If there’s a judgement against you, you go to that same court to set it aside. You don’t go and file a fresh action in another court, and thereby set the courts on collision course, which may result to conflicting court orders.”

He said since the Markafi faction had appealed the judgement, it should have waited for the outcome of the party.

“There’s an appeal against the judgement of Abuja court. No other person can go to another court, a lower court, to set aside the judgement of a court of coordinate jurisdiction. It’s not done.

“And I don’t blame the judges, like the judge in Akure, because nothing happened to those who gave conflicting orders in the PDP leadership crisis the other day. That’s why this mess is continuing.”

He urged Governor Olusegun Mimiko of Ondo State to discourage his supporters from engaging in protests because he was he became a governor after a court pronouncement.

He added, “You can’t take any step that will subvert the rule of law. What do they expect INEC to do? To disregard the order of a court because of sentiment and rely on expataint order? No responsible organisation does that.”

Festus Keyamo also supported the position of Falana on INEC’s choice, insisting the election umpire followed the law.

“There are conflicting orders.” He said. “There’s no amount of emotion or protests that can change that. It’s a purely legal matter.

“It doesn’t matter the presence of a political group. There are two conflicting orders. INEC is in complete order to effect any of the orders until the Supreme Court decides.”

Ondo State has no business being poor – Oke

Alliance for Democracy (AD) Governorship Candidate in Ondo State, Chief Olusola Oke, has said the state has no business being poor despite its endowed natural resources.

Oke who blamed the unemployment rate on the comatose state of industries in the state regretted that despite this, the current government in the State had abandoned the economic and industrial policies of its predecessor in office.

Addressing his supporters at Idanre during his campaign tour at the weekend, the AD candidate , promised to revive all moribund industries in the state and as well complete the abandoned ones.

He promised to reverse the economic situation by creating the enabling environment which would attract investors to the state and encourage farmers with necessary implements and aids ,if elected.

“Ondo State has no business with joblessness and poverty. God greatly endowed this state with resources and we will put all these to use for the benefit of our people.” He said

He listed the moribund and abandoned agro-allied industries and life-transforming projects to include Olokola project; Cocoa Processing Company, Ile Oluji; Cassava Processing, Ikoya; Fisheries, Akure; and Alfa 3D, Ikare Akoko.

According to him, politicians, who deliberately pauperised the people through their anti-people policies, capitalised on the jobless situation, give money to the youths to perpetrate violence whereas they keep and invest in their children outside the shores of the country.

He however, promised the people that his administration would complete reticulation work on the Owena Multi-purpose Dam billed to supply water to the Central Senatorial District including Idanre.

Oke had earlier paid visits to the Owa of Idanre, Oba Fredrick Aroloye; the Aladeokun of Alade Kingdom, Oba Olusegun Akinbola; the Awosunye of Atosin-Idanre, Oba Gilbert Ogunlowo; and the Alajowa of Ajowaland, Idanre, Oba Sunday Akinbo, and their chiefs where the traditional councils disclosed the needs of their communities.

Among their demands are peaceful election which would ensure development in the state, establishment of tertiary institution in Idanre, completion of the Golf Course, establishment of Golf Village, jobs for natives and support for farmers among others.

Mimiko Rushes To Meets Buhari In Aso Rock, Says Ondo May Boil

President Muhammadu Buhari and Ondo State Governor Olusegun Mimiko  met behind closed-doors at the Aso Rock Presidential Villa in Abuja.

Governor Mimiko arrived the president’s office at about 11.00am.

It was gathered that Mimiko visited the Presidential Villa in respect of the Thursday’s declaration by the Independent National Electoral Commission of Jimoh Ibrahim as the candidate of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) in the Ondo governorship election.

The INEC had removed the name of Eyitayo Jegede from the list of the candidates of the political parties that would participate in the November 26 governorship election and replaced it with Ibrahim.

The governor told State House reporters today shortly after meeting behind closed-doors with Buhari that the INEC’s action could cause a conflagration in the state.

The governor said there was no moral justification for what the INEC did describing Ibrahim’s declaration as injustice and mischief.

Mimiko said President Buhari promised him that he would look into the matter.

Credit: dailytrust

Ondo guber: AD suspends 3 principal officers.

The Alliance for Democracy (AD) has suspended three principal officers of the party for their alleged involvement in the governorship candidacy saga in Ondo State.

A communique signed by AD National Chairman, Mr Joseph Avazi, issued in Abuja on Friday, said the three officials were suspended by the party’s National Executive Council [NEC] at its meeting on Oct. 26.

It listed those affected as: Alhaji Shehu Musa, Deputy National Chairman North, Mr Kehinde Aworele, the National Legal Adviser, and the National Organising Secretary, Mr Abdallah Ibrahim.

The communique added that the suspension was to allow the NEC to meet again and resolve the matter.

It stated that the NEC had appointed Alhaji Magaji Kwairanga to act as Deputy National Chairman North, Mr Roland Kientey, as acting National Organising Secretary, and the Deputy Legal Adviser to oversee the legal department.

According to the communique, the NEC has recognised Mr Olusola Oke as the AD candidate in the Nov. 26 governorship election in Ondo state

Ondo 2016: Why We Named Jimoh Ibrahim, Not Jegede as PDP Candidate – INEC

The Independent National Electoral Commission has named businessman Jimoh Ibrahim as the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party for the November 26 governorship election.

Mr. Ibrahim’s name was posted on an INEC notice board in Akure as well as on the commission’s website.

This implies that until a superior court gives a contrary judgment, Eyitayo Jegede, the candidate of the Ahmed Makarfi-led faction of the PDP will not be accepted as the party’s candidate.

A court order from an the Ondo State High Court on Wednesday restrained INEC from recognizing Mr. Ibrahim as the candidate of the PDP pending the determination of the substantive suit before the court.

The Ondo State Resident Electoral Commissioner, Olusegun Agbaje, however, told newsmen on Thursday night that Mr. Ibrahim was approved as candidate based on an order from the Federal High Court in Abuja presided over by Justice Okon Abang.

Mr. Abang had on October 14 declared Mr. Ibrahim the true candidate of the PDP. On Thursday, Mr. Abang rejected a plea by Mr. Jegede seeking to be allowed to appeal the October 14 court judgement.

It is based on these two court rulings that INEC approved Mr. Ibrahim as the PDP candidate.

“We received a court order from the High Court in Akure and that was yesterday(Wednesday), but there was a subsisting one by Justice Abang today(Thursday), that is what happened,” Mr. Agbaje said.

Asked if another court order can upturn the situation, Mr. Agbaje said INEC would have no choice but to drop Mr. Ibrahim if another superior order comes in favour of Mr. Jegede.
“That is why we put in front of the name ‘court order,’ to show that the name was picked as a result of an order of the court,” he said.

“The situation will continue that way until the matter is decided by the Supreme Court if the parties choose to proceed to the apex court.”

The commissioner said the politicians had brought themselves into a tight corner, noting that instead of going to the Court of Appeal, they were jumping from one high court to the other.

“Now they have to go on appeal at a higher court,” he said. “They are the ones undoing themselves and like I said, we do not have any candidate. We will only abide by the laws guiding the process.”

Ondo guber: I remain PDP candidate – Ibrahim

The factional candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, in the November 2016 Ondo State governorship election, Jimoh Ibrahim, has accused the Independent National Electoral Commission of trying to exclude him from the election by not accepting his papers as the authentic candidate of the PDP.

Addressing a press conference in Abuja, yesterday evening, Ibrahim, said the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) is not an appeal court, therefore, cannot determine who is the PDP candidate in the election.

The business mogul’s claim to being the candidate of the PDP was strengthened last week when an Abuja high court ruled that the electoral body should recognise Ibrahim, who was produced by the Ali Modu Sheriff faction of the party.

His attempt to file the court judgement was allegedly rebuffed by an official of the commission whom he alleged demanded a bribe of $1million from him.

But the Chief Press Secretary to the chairman of INEC, Mr Rotimi Oyekunmi denied the allegations saying no demand was made of the candidate.

Speaking further on the matter, Jimoh Ibrahim said though the electoral body had said it will obey the court judgement immediately it was served, the music changed “immediately INEC was served the judgement.

“After the service, the music changed. INEC should not allow one governor to destroy its reputation. We are not saying that INEC will not obey the court judgement. One of the officials demanded for one million dollar bribe from me to process the court judgement,” he alleged.

The PDP chieftain, who said he had petitioned President Muhammadu Buhari and reported the official to the INEC chairman also demanded the removal of the Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC) in Ondo State, saying that he is a card carrying member of the PDP.

Jimoh said he cannot be trusted to conduct a free and fair election in the state.

However, in a reaction, the Chief Press Secretary to the INEC chairman, Rotimi Oyekunmi said: ”It is not true that Mrs Babalola demanded one million dollar from Jimoh Ibrahim. Two other officials of INEC witnessed the encounter between Mrs Babalola and Ibrahim. Ibrahim brought a copy of his judgement and wanted to impress it on INEC to collect it but we told him we already have it. It is ungodly of a businessman of his stature to make this kind of allegation.”

Ondo PDP, APC clash over alleged NSCDC training of thugs.

The Ondo State chapter of All Progressives Congress (APC) has accused the state command of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC), of aiding and abetting thuggery in the state.

The major opposition party alleged that NSCDC is harbouring thugs of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in its premises, as it also faulted the organisation of plans to foment violence in the forthcoming election.

However, the ruling PDP had earlier alleged that the rival APC is sewing army uniforms and purchasing Permanent Voters Card (PVC) in contravention to electoral laws.

The APC State Publicity Secretary, Mr. Abayomi Adesanya, who made the allegation in Akure, stressed that the party would not allow the PDP to rig the election “no matter how much it tries.”

According to the party, “We are aware of the secret training of thugs going on at the camp of the NSCDC, we are doing our findings and that is what is going on there. We are already putting up our petitions to the appropriate quarters now.”

Abayomi disclosed that the party had taken necessary steps to apprise the Ondo State Command of NSCDC of the development, and not to allow the Corp to be used by any party to cause problems in the election.

But the Public Relations Officer of NSCDC, Mr. Kayode Balogun denied the allegation, saying the Corps is non-partisan and could not allow such an illegal activity to take place in its premises.

According to him, “It is not true, we are not partisan, we are doing our work the way we should do it, we are not supporting any political party neither should we harbour any thugs training in our premises.”

Similarly, the PDP denied the allegation, saying that it was APC that was involved in the act of thuggery borne out of desperation to win the election.

The Publicity Secretary of the party, Mr. Banji Okunomo said, “We don’t know what the APC is saying, we don’t have any thug anywhere, thuggery is not part of the PDP, we don’t encourage it in our party.

“It is the APC that involves in thuggery we all saw how they displayed their thuggery recently in the state after their primary. It is only the APC that has been noted for thuggery. You can never hear of thuggery from the PDP, we don’t encourage it.”

INEC Distributes 1.2m PVCs in Ondo State

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in Ondo State said it had distributed a total of 1,201,073 Permanent Voter Cards (PVCs) to registered voters. The Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC), Mr. Olusegun Agbaje, made this announcement at a stakeholders’ meeting in Akure Wednesday.
He added that 344,006 PVCs haven’t been collected yet and encouraged those yet to collect theirs to do so as distribution continues. He said:


“It is important to stress at this juncture that only the PVCs would be used to vote during the governorship poll, while the smart card readers would be used for accreditation of voters,’’

He also said that selling of PVCs or any form of manipulation of the card is a serious offence punishable under the law with fines and/or prison term.

He assured electorates in the state that INEC will remain fair and unbiased to everyone during elections.

Source: Vanguard

How Ondo APC primary election was ‘rigged’ – Akinyelure

ALL Progressives Congress (APC) National Vice Chairman (Southwest), Chief Pius Akinyelure, has explained how the party’s governorship primary was manipulated, culminating in the submission of Chief Oluwarotimi Akeredolu’s name to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) as the party’s candidate.

Akinyelure, in a statement, named the party’s National Chairman, Chief John Odigie-Oyegun, National Secretary Mai Mala Buni and the National Organising Secretary, Senator Osita Izunaso, as the persons behind the act.

The statement, which the APC National Vice Chairman said enjoys the support of six National Working Committee (NWC) members, accused the trio of using NWC meetings to usurp powers and unilaterally take decisions that their offices did not give them the power to take.

It emerged that as many as three delegates’ lists for the election were in circulation at some point after the first list was tampered with.

Izunaso, according to the statement, single-handedly removed, added or substituted names on the initial list circulated to the party’s 24 aspirants, leading to the emergence of a second list that was altered in favour of Akeredolu.

His action enjoyed the support of Oyegun and Buni, even when other members of the NWC opposed it because it conflicted with the party’s rules.

Akinyelure’s statement reads: “The National Organising Secretary confirmed to the NWC meeting of Monday September 19, 2016 that he actually received objections from some of the aspirants as to the delegates’ list. Then he unilaterally made the adjustments as he deemed fit.

“It is emphasised that the National Organising Secretary performed these adjustments without recourse or reference to the NWC. The NWC was not appraised of his actions before the primary. The National Organising Secretary then issued this altered list to the Primary Election Committee for use in the conduct of the election.

“This altered list became available to some of the aspirants in the early hours of the election day (September 3, 2016). When the election process was about to commence, Chief Oluwarotimi Akeredolu and three other aspirants protested and raised objections as to the delegates’ list to the election committee.

“However, the committee members could not address it as it was not within their competence to do so. They went ahead with the conduct of the election. After the declaration of the results of the election by the election committee, three aspirants petitioned the Election Appeal Committee, alleging discrepancies and the alteration of the delegates’ list provided to them by the election committee and other irregularities.

“Consequent on the above, the NWC of the party received both the Election Committee and the Election Appeal Committee’s reports, which were tabled at the NWC meeting of Monday, September 19, 2016.”

A decision by the NWC to submit the name of an interim substitute to INEC as place holder until a fresh primary was conducted suffered a setback after Oyegun, Buni and Izunaso “blindsided the other members to submit Akeredolu’s name in spite of a six to five votes in favour of presenting the substitute name”.

Ondo 2016: Senator Alasoadura Begs Tinuba, Says APC Cannot Win Without Him

As the crisis rocking the All Progressive Congress (APC) continues in Ondo State with one of the front line aspirants at the primary election held September 3rd Chief Olusola Oke decamping to Alliance for Democracy (AD), the senator representing Ondo south senatorial district, Chief Tayo Alasoadura has called on the leader of the party Asiwaju to forgive them for the embarrassment they have caused him.

At a press conference held on Monday at the press centre, Adegbemile in Akure, the Ondo state capital, Alasoadura who had once been quoted to have said “Abolowo Tinubu” meaning we are free from Tinubu shortly after Chief Rotimi Akeredolu (SAN) was declared winner said the former governor of Lagos state remains the leader of the party.

According to Alasoadura “reflecting deeply on recent happenings within our party, we will see glaringly the extent to which we have embarrassed ourselves and equally brought our national leaders into ridicule as a result of our action and utterances in pursuance of personal ambitions”.

He said while they will continue to appeal to aggrieved members and aspirants to come together and work for the party, the party does not have more time for internal wrangling.

“I strongly believe that there has not been a better time for the APC in Ondo state to harness its political strength, shift grounds to accommodate the differences of others for the purpose of giving to the people a good government they can trust.



“Now is the time to sink our differences and move forward as a united family to win in the November governorship election for our party by supporting the candidature of Barrister Oluwarotimi Akeredolu by all true democrats.

“Though some party members might have been aggrieved by the process that led to the emergence of Akeredolu, but we don’t have more time for internal wrangling,’ he said.

Ondo Government sensitizes residents on Lassa fever

Residents of Ondo State have been advised to maintain a healthy environment and avoid rats from getting in contact with their food, so as to prevent the spread of Lassa fever in the state.


The state’s Commissioner for Health, Dr. Dayo Adeyanju, stated this on Thursday at a sensitisation meeting on the management and control of Lassa fever held in Owo town of Ondo State, southwest Nigeria.


The meeting comes up after a case of the viral disease was confirmed at the Federal Medical Centre in the town, while two other suspected cases are still being investigated.


The Commissioner had earlier stopped on the highway between Akure ?and Owo to educate some residents on the need to stop spreading food substances such as cassava and yam flour near bushes, in order to prevent rats from contaminating the food.

He ?disclosed that the state government had made funds available to procure the equipment for testing the disease, as the victims pass through a lot of suffering which worsens their situation when they are being transferred to Edo State for treatment.


Speaking to reporters, a public health physician, Dr. Olufemi Ayodeji, explained the cause of the disease and how it is transmitted.


He said that the symptoms of Lassa fever include body pains, vomiting and the regular fever just like malaria, saying it could only be diagnosed through medical tests on the victims.


The Vice Chairman of Owo Local Government, Mr Olusola Owadasa and the traditional ruler? of one of the towns in the area, Oba Omotunde Adako, voiced their support for the sensitisation programme.


They promised to help disseminate relevant information and also educate their people about the disease.

Group condemns WAEC’s relocation of Edo students to Ondo, Delta states.

The Education Rights Campaign (ERC) has condemned the decision of the West African Examination Council (WAEC) to relocate 1,742 candidates sitting for the ongoing November/December West African Senior School Certificate Examination in Edo State to Ondo and Delta states, thereby increasing the financial expenses on poor working class guardians.


In a statement, the national coordinator, Hassan Taiwo Soweto stated that the decision of WAEC is exploitative and insensitive.


As a public institution, WAEC has a responsibility towards candidates, their parents and guardians. That responsibility involves ensuring that in circumstances of this nature, candidates, their parents and guardians are not unnecessarily over burdened”, he said.

He, however, disclosed that WAEC took the decision to relocate the candidates because of the Edo State gubernatorial elections which was scheduled to take place on September 10, the day the candidates are expected to sit for Mathematics 1 and 2.


Furthermore, he demanded that WAEC bears the full cost of this relocation including cost of transportation and, where needed, accommodation of the candidates.


As far as we are concerned, since the candidates and their parents were not responsible for the relocation, which was forced by the coincidence of the examination date with the date of the Edo gubernatorial elections, WAEC must bear the full cost including ensuring a hitch free exercise and the safety of the candidates”, he added

INEC Bars Corrupt Staff From Edo, Ondo Guber Polls

The Independent National Electoral Commission has stopped its officers, who are currently undergoing investigations for alleged corrupt practices, from taking part in the conduct of the governorship elections in Edo and Ondo states.


The commission said the action was taken in order to give credibility to the two elections.


Governorship elections are to hold in Edo and Ondo states on September 10 and November 26 respectively.


The commission also said if the affected officers were not cleared even after the two elections must have been held, they would continue to be left out of other electoral assignments.


INEC’s Deputy Director, Publicity and Voter Education, Mr. Nick Dazang, stated this in an interview in Abuja on Sunday.


Dazang was asked if the over 100 officers, being investigated for alleged bribery by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission in connection with bribery allegations during the last general elections, would be deployed for the two elections.


The Chairman of INEC, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, had confirmed the number of the suspects, stating that at the end of the probe, those found guilty would be sacked.


Some resident electoral officers of the commission were alleged to have been bribed by the officials of the Peoples Democratic Party during the general elections.


For example, a former Resident Electoral Commissioner in Rivers State, Mrs. Gesila Khan, and other top INEC officials in the South-South geopolitical zone were alleged to have received N675.1m from a former Minister of Petroleum Resources, Mrs. Diezani Alison-Madueke.


According to impeccable sources at the EFCC, Khan, who was later deployed as REC in Cross River State, allegedly received N185.8m ahead of the March 28 and April 11, 2015 elections.

The commission also arrested one Oluchi Obi Brown, who was the INEC administrative secretary in Delta State, said to have allegedly received over N111m.


Further investigations by detectives revealed that Brown had about $75,000 in an account in the United States.


The anti-graft agency also arrested one Edem Okon Effanga, who is a retired INEC official. Effanga was arrested alongside his alleged accomplice, Immaculata Asuquo, who was the Head, Voter Education of INEC in Akwa Ibom State.


Effanga was alleged to have received over N240m, which he shared among INEC ad hoc workers during the last elections.


Dazang said those still under investigations would be excluded from the elections in order to give credibility to the polls.


He said, It is the rule that anyone undergoing investigations for any allegations will not be deployed for any electoral duty.


We will obey this simple logic. We won’t deploy any of those being investigated for the forthcoming Edo and Ondo governorship elections.


All those who have questions to answer either from the EFCC or any other security agencies, regarding the roles they played in the last general elections, are to be excused from these elections.


We need to give the elections credibility. If we don’t do that, Nigerians will query us. Until these officers are cleared, they won’t be deployed for any electoral duty.”


Though the list of invited members of staff INEC kept increasing, Yakubu had said the commission was cooperating with the EFCC, adding that ultimately, members of staff, who were culpable, would “be shown the way out.”

Ondo guber: Why We Are Backing Abraham – APC Chieftains

As the All Progressives Congress (APC) holds its governorship primaries tomorrow, one of the chieftains of the party in the state, Dr Taiwo Malumi, has thrown his weight behind the aspiration of Dr. Oluwasegun Abraham .

Malumi who is a senatorial leader of the party in the state, admitted that the challenges of governance in the state currently need somebody of Abraham status, and that he will be the best man to restore the state back to its place of pride.

While addressing delegates to the Saturday governorship primary of the party in Igbokoda, Ilaje local government, the politician described Abraham as a grassroot politician who would hit the ground running immediately he emerges as the governor of the state.

According to him, Abraham is a man who by words and deeds, has shown character, leadership, sincerity of purpose, selflessness, uncommon sacrifice and integrity.

Malumi who further described him as a team player, bridge builder, mobiliser and mediator, noted that he is the only person that have the good credentials that said to be towering above others.

He said the party has recognised the need to put square pegs in square holes in order to sustain the progressive stance of the party, hence, the state-wide Abraham’s acceptance as the flag bearer of the APC in the forthcoming governorship poll.

His words, “Our party prides itself on singling out the best heads for positions of responsibility. And, as far as Ondo is concerned, her economy is in need of someone who can produce results based on evident economic experience. Abraham is a successful businessman who will get the best deals that will profit Ilaje and Ondo as a whole”.

“I do not support losers, I’ve known him for a while, I know he also doubles has a technocrat with the highest hands-on experience and professionalism among the aspirants, at a level sufficient enough to use what we have in our state to transform Ondo to the Amsterdam of Africa. We must vote for him, and with these acceptance the whole state has given him, I’m sure he will win by a wide margin,” Malumi stated.

I Fear No Juju – Jigawa Governor, Badaru Abubakar Reacts To Ondo APC Primary Election Crisis

Gov. Badaru Abubakar of Jigawa State says he is not afraid of charms and will conduct the Ondo APC primary election transparently.

Abubakar said this while briefing newsmen in Abuja after being sworn in as the Chairman of All Progressives Congress (APC) Ondo Primary Election Committee.

He said: ”Free and fair election will solve the problem. If they believe we are free, fair and transparent, they will accept the result.

”Well in the first place, I don’t believe in juju so certainly I am surely not afraid.

”I don’t know of any imposition, my duty there is to be free, fair and transparent and I think that is the only thing that will help the party.”

He said the issue of identifying the delegates was important and their international passport, permanent voter card or national identity card would suffice.

”Any one of the three will be able to solve the identification problem,” he said.

Abubakar advised other governors to cut expenditure in order to overcome the embarrassment of owing staff salaries.

He said once the workers were paid and happy, any state could move forward and be productive.

”In Jigawa, we are not owing salaries. In fact we always pay on the 25th of every month whether the federation account comes in or not.

”We are not owing either local government or state salaries and we are not owing pension. In fact pensioners collect on the 13th or 15th.

”We are not owing gratuity as well. We are really very clean as far as staff welfare is concerned and even this week or next week, we’ll be paying the annual leave grants as promised.

”The magic is being prudent. You just have to do what you think is good for the people.

”Paying workers is of paramount importance and we have to sacrifice all what we do to be sure to pay our workers because workers have to remain focused.

”We do a lot of cost savings and employ cost saving techniques to reduce expenditure of the government.


”For instance in the government house, the expenditure has been reduced by as much as 80 per cent, while general overhead has been reduced as much as 47 per cent.

”The security vote has been reduced as much as 87 per cent. We use only 13 per cent of what they normally used.

“So, all those expenditure that have no direct bearing to the common man have been reduced drastically to give room for service to the people.”

The APC Primary Election Committee is made up of Dr Bruce Ugbide, Rep. Hamma Ali, Prince M. Martin and Mr Mohammed Lawal.

The Election Appeals Committee is headed by Mrs Helen Bendeha, with Alhaji Musa Umar and Ms Nicky Ejezie as members. (NAN)

Ondo Governorship Primaries: I Have No Anointed Candidate – Buhari

President Muhammadu Buhari has reiterated that he has no preferred candidate among the 24 governorship aspirants of the All Progressives Congress, APC, in Ondo State.

Buhari said this through the Secretary to theGovernment of the Federation, SGF, Babachir David Lawal, during a meeting with all the aspirants in Abuja.

The APC will on Saturday conduct its primary election to pick its candidate ahead of the governorship election in the state.

Addressing reporters after the meeting, Lawal said: “The government of President Muhammadu Buhari wishes to reiterate that it has no preferred candidate among the 24 aspirants and that government would do all in its power to provide a level-playing field for all the aspirants.

“We expect that all the aspirants will work hard to win the votes of delegates. In the tradition of APC, we expect that there will be no inducement of delegates or coercion.”

The SGF also warned that government would deal decisively with anyone who breached the peace of the state during the primaries.

“We will like to once again reassure you that as a government, we have no preferred candidate.

“Government will come hard on anyone that does anything that in anyway jeopardises the peace and security of Ondo state”, he added.

Ondo APC Headquarters Splashed With charms, Deji of Akure Fumes

The entrance of  the All Progressives Congress (APC) party secretariat in Akure, Ondo State was laced with assorted charms as stakeholders of the party were said to be in loggerheads. The diabolic items were discovered on Sunday night and hasn’t been removed as of the time of filing this report,  blocking people – who believed they will be harmed by the charms – from accessing the secretariate.

Meanwhile, the Deji of Akure, Oba Ogunlade Aladetoyinbo Aladelusi, Odundun II, has released a statement on the development, calling it a sacrilege.

His words:

“The palace condemns the attitude of some miscreants who went and sealed the entrance of the party secretariat with the traditional palm fronds which is the traditional means of sealing off premises in Akureland.
“We want to state that carrying out traditional sealing-off of premises remains the prerogative of the Palace.

“The Deji of Akure remains non-partisan and a father to all political aspirants and never authorized such.

“Oba Ogunlade frowns at this attitude and wishes to inform the general public that such act did not emanate from the palace.

“We call on the APC party executives to unravel the circumstances behind this abominable act. We equally call on security agencies to investigate and bring to book those behind the sacrilegious act so as to serve as deterrent to would-be persons.”

Mob Kills Man For Stealing Goat In Ondo

Credit: NationalMirror

INEC Releases Timetable For Edo, Ondo Governorship Elections

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has fixed June 12 for the commencement of political campaigns ahead of the Sept. 10 governorship election in Edo.

Similarly, it said that electioneering by aspirants in the governorship election in Ondo state scheduled for Nov. 26 should begin on Aug. 28.

This is contained in the commission’s daily bulletin issued on Thursday in Abuja.

According to it, June 12 has been scheduled for the commencement of campaigns by political parties participating in the Edo governorship election.

“July 2 to July 4 have also been set aside for the conduct of party primaries, including resolution of disputes arising from the primaries,” it said.

It stated that official register of voters for the election in Edo would be published on Aug. 11.

It added that submission of names of political parties’ agents should be made to Electoral Officers in the local government areas in the state on Aug. 28.

According to the commission, Sept. 8 will be the last day for campaigns for the Edo governorship election.

For Ondo state, it fixed Aug. 28 for commencement of campaigns by political parties, adding that the parties had between Aug. 22 and Aug. 26 to collect nomination forms from INEC headquarters in Abuja.

It added that conduct of party primaries, including resolution of disputes arising from the primaries in Ondo state would hold between Sept. 18 and Sept. 19.

It also said that register of voters for the Ondo election would be published on Oct. 27, while submission of party agents’ names to Electoral Officers in the local government areas had been slated for Nov. 19.

It fixed Nov. 24 as the last day for campaigns for the Ondo election.



Ondo APC Aspirants Kick, Reject Elders’ Consensus Arrangement

Some governorship aspirants of the All Progressives Congress in Ondo State have rejected an alleged plan by a group of elders in the party to pick a consensus candidate ahead of the forthcoming governorship election in the state scheduled for  November 26, 2016.

It was gathered that the elders, under the auspices of Akoko Elders Assembly, were making an arrangement for all the APC governorship aspirants to produce a consensus candidate in Akoko in order to enable an Akoko indigene win the party’s primary.

In a statement jointly signed on Monday by some of the aspirants, who include Senator Ajayi Boroffice, Mr. Victor Olabimtan, Dr. Tunji Abayomi and Mr. Gani Dauda, the aspirants described the plan as unconstitutional.

The elders were said to have met on April 29, 2016 at the residence of one of the party’s statesmen, Pa Felix Aiyegbusi, where they (elders) gave an ultimatum to all the APC governorship aspirants from Akokoland to present a consensus candidate.

It was gathered that the elders warned that they would impose a candidate on the aspirants if they failed to come up with a consensus candidate.

However, the aspirants said in the statement that section 20 of the APC Constitution empowered only the National Executive Committee of the party to provide the guidelines for the conduct of congresses at an appropriate time.

The statement read in part, “We also need to state affirmatively that we will not recognise or accept the decision taken at the Baba Felix Aiyegbusi’s residence as binding on us (because) the meeting has the potential to cause serious and dangerous disunity in Akoko.

“It is terribly subjective, considering the fact that many of the so-called elders at that meeting are already in the campaign team of at least one candidate. In fact, they go from one location to  another with a particular candidate.”

The aspirants said the constitution of the APC only recognised two ways through which candidates could emerge, stressing that it was either by internal party election duly held through a relevant congress or primary or by a consensus among aspirants.

The aspirants said the method through which the elders wanted to pick a candidate was unconstitutional, stressing that they would disregard the outcome of the meeting.


Credit: Punch

Police Order Registration Of Herdsmen In Ondo

Ondo State Commissioner of Police, Hilda Harrison, yesterday said her command could no longer fold its arms and allow the excesses of Fulani herdsmen to go unchecked. Harrison ordered that all herdsmen operating in the state should be registered for identification purposes. She warned that unregistered cattle rearers would not be allowed to operate in the state, saying the head of the Hausa/ Fulani community where such herdsmen foment trouble would be held responsible.

The police commissioner spoke at an interactive session with stakeholders in Akure, the state capital. Stakeholders at the meeting included local farmers, heads of Hausa/ Fulani communities across the state, traditional rulers and leaders of Miyyatti Allah. She said: “Farmers and cattle rearers have been living together in this state before now. We need to come together, especially now that the price of petroleum products has come down; also, we should go back to the farm.

“We cannot do without one another and we must realise we need each other to earn our daily bread. Therefore, let us make efforts to promote peace in the state. “We are going to register every Hausa/Fulani community in the state. The leaders must know the number of herdsmen in their various camps. They must be registered and have identity cards. Henceforth, the leaders will be held responsible for the activities of the herdsmen.

“Nobody can take law into his or her hand. It will catch up with you. We can never compromise law and order. Police cannot fold their arms and allow a breakdown of law and order.”

Harrison urged farmers in the state not to go on any reprisal attack whenever they have issues with the herdsmen, saying “two wrongs don’t make a right.”

Credit: NationalMirror

Ondo Gets New Commissioner Of Police

Ondo State’s new Commissioner of Police (CP) has assumed duty in the State command
The new CP, ?Hilda Harrison, on Monday, addressed reporters and senior police officers in the Command on her resumption.

Mrs Harrison said that she would focus on training and retraining of officers for  effectiveness in performance of their duties.

She expressed her readiness to key into the vision of the Inspector General of Police on zero tolerance on corruption.

Mrs Harrison promised to use all strategies available to ensure that Ondo State was crime free.

She added that the conflict between herdsmen and farmers in the state, would be addressed.

CP Harrison is the 37th Commissioner of Police, taking over from CP Mike ?Ogbodu, who retired recently.

Credit: ChannelsTv

INEC Releases Timetable For Edo, Ondo Governorship Elections

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has released the timetable for the conduct of Edo and Ondo states governorship elections on Sept. 10 and Nov. 26, respectively.


This is contained in the commission’s daily bulletin issued on Thursday in Abuja.


The commission also released the Time Table and Schedule of Activities for both governorship elections in concert with the provisions of the 1999 Constitution (as amended).


According to the Timetable and Schedule of Activities for Edo governorship election, campaigns by political parties should begin by June 12, 2016.


” The conduct of party primaries in Edo, including resolution of disputes arising from the primaries, will take place from June 2 to Monday July 4, 2016.”


It added that the Commission would publish the official Register of Voters for the Edo governorship election on Augt. 11.


” On the same day, INEC will publish the list of nominated candidates by ppolitical parties.”


According to the timetable, Sept.8 will be the last day for campaigns in Edo.

For Ondo State poll, the commission scheduled Aug. 28, for commencement of campaigns by political parties in the state.


“The conduct of party primaries, including resolution of disputes arising from the primaries, will take place between Aug. 18 and Sept. 19.

“Publication of the Official Register of Voters for the election will be done on Oct. 27, while publication of list of nominated candidates will be done on the same day.”


It also stated that Nov. 24 had been fixed by the Commission as the last day of campaigns by all political parties.


“Run-off election to the Office of the Governor in the state (if any) will be held within 7 days after the announcement of the result of the election in accordance with the Constitution.”


Similarly the commission has scheduled the Ife Central State Constituency, Osun re-run election for April 9.


“Ife Central State Constituency is made up of one local government, 11 Registration Areas, 168 Polling Units and 197 Voting Points.

“The State Constituency has a total of 95,239 registered voters.”



SDP Opts Out Of Ondo LG Polls

The Social Democratic Party (SDP) has opted out of the April 23 local government election to be conducted by the Ondo State Independent Electoral Commission (ODIEC).

The boycotting of the local government election by the SDP made it two major political parties who have decided to boycott the council poll as the rival All Progressives Congress (APC) had earlier decided not to participate in the election.

The SDP at its inaugural meeting held in Akure, the state capital Wednesday based its decision on the lack of confidence in the composition of the State ODIEC saying the body as presently constituted cannot conduct free and fair elections.
In the communique signed by the Chairman, Chief Korede Duyile and Secretary, Mr Dele Ogunbameru stated that what the state electoral umpire planned for April 23 is more of selection than election.

The party said: “That the SDP noted the preparations being made so far by state government controlled electoral body (ODIEC), and resolved that no responsible political party in the opposition will expect to take part in the election.


“That even if any opposition party ventures to take part in the election and win majority of the votes ODIEC will only award few votes to such a party.

“That both the state government and ODIEC need to settle all legal encumbrances in regard to the conduct of local government election.”


Credit : Today

Police Arrest 150 Boko Haram Suspects In Ondo

Palpable fear enveloped Ondo State, yesterday, as Police detectives reportedly intercepted a truck loaded with about 150 persons suspected to be members of the Boko Haram sect.
Reports had it that the suspects have been taken to the State Police Command, where they are being interrogated.
The items allegedly recovered from the suspects include 18 locally made guns, 2 jack knives, 22 cutlasses as well as several flash lights.
But the Police Command has allayed fears, asking the people not to panic as they are on top of the situation, adding that investigations were on to verify the identity and mission of the suspects.
Detectives from the Funbi-Fagun Divisional Police Station in Ondo Town intercepted the truck with registration number KANO NSR 97 XZ, loaded with the suspects, who are from the northern part of the country.
Also, the suspects were said to be coming from Kebbi State and heading towards Ore town in Odigbo Local Government area of the state before they were intercepted by the police at Lipakala junction in Ondo town.
It was gathered further that following a tip off, the Divisional Police Officer (DPO) in charge of the Funbi Fagun Police station, Mr Olu-Ojo Ogunmoyole and men of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad from the Police headquarters in Akure swung into action and went after the truck conveying the suspects.
The suspects, after being apprehended were detained at the Police station before being taken to Akure.
Speaking with newsmen, one of the suspects, Abdulahi Sheriff denied that they are members of the sect.
Abdulahi, who said that they were “farmers coming from Birni-Kebbi to farm in Ore town”, noted that they left their homes owing to the prolonged dry season in their state which has affected their farming activities.
The DPO of Funbi Fagun Police Station, Ogunmoyole told newsmen that the suspects were intercepted during a surveillance operation carried out by the anti-robbery squad attached to the Police division.
He, however, advised people of the community to remain calm and go about their lawful businesses.
When contacted, the State Police spokesman, Mr Femi Joseph denied that the 150 suspects arrested in Ondo are members of the Boko Haram.
Reacting to the arrest, Joseph said investigation so far conducted showed that they are farmers travelling to Ore town for farming activities.
On the weapons found in their possession, the police spokesman said some of the apprehended men were hunters.




Credit : Vanguard

Lassa Fever Hits Ondo, Kills Two

The Ondo State Government today said two persons have been killed by Lassa Fever in the state.


This was announced by the State Commissioner for Health, Dr. Dayo Adeyanyu at a Lassa prevention stakeholders meeting organised for health workers, religious, opinion and traditional leaders in Akure the State Capital.


The Commissioner said one of the suspects came into the state from the neighboring Edo State.

According to an earlier reports, over 35 people have been killed by the disease which is now in about 10 states.


Adeyanju, however, informed that 31 persons had been placed under surveillance in order to prevent the spread of the disease across the state.


He noted that those placed under surveillance are those who had in one way or the other had contact with the two suspects killed by the disease in the state.


He equally counseled religious leaders not to harbour sick persons who manifest symptoms of Lassa but referred them to the nearest hospital for prompt attention.
?Adeyanju revealed that the outbreak control team at the local government has been re-activated, ?while emergency lines have been released to the public in addition to intensified jingles on radio and television.


The attendants of the event all promised to step up the sensitization in their respective domains.




Credit : Daily Post

Workers, Students, Others Protest In Ekiti, Ondo, Osun

Protesters deplored the plight of students, workers and other suffering people in Ekiti, Osun and Ondo states yesterday.

At the federal level, reactions, mostly critical, have trailed President Muhammadu Buhari’s Independence anniversary speech with Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria (HURIWA) frowning at his silence on agitation for the reform of the Nigeria Police Force.

The group, in a statement by its National Co-ordinator, Mr. Emmanuel Onwubiko, particularly criticised the President’s failure to use the occasion to unveil his government’s programme on comprehensive police reform.

HURIWA said an occasion such as the 55th Independence anniversary should have provided the opportunity for the Nigerian government under the new dispensation to provide clear guidelines and evidence-based programme of police reform given that armed kidnapping has proven to be one of the greatest national security threats after terrorism.

Credit: ngrguardiannews

Ondo State Workers Protest Non-Payment Of Salary Arrears

These are scenes that happened this morning at the AG’s office, Ondo State. Workers protesting non payment of salary arrears even after collection of Bailout from CBN. See more photos below…

Read More: http://www.kevindjakporblog.com/2015/09/ondo-state-workers-protest-non-payment.html#ixzz3mSlxZThp
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APC Winning Ondo A Pipe Dream- PDP

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Ondo State has said that it is practically impossible for the All Progressives Congress (APC), to win the next governorship election in the state, describing it as a tall dream.

The state Publicity Secretary of the PDP, Banji Okunomo, who made this declaration in Akure said the state chapter of the APC is still basking in the euphoria of the March 28 election which will not translate into victory for the party in the next year election in the state.

He said the opposition party in the state has no root and structure, noting that the Ondo APC has lost the popularity which brought the party into power at the centre saying “APC in Ondo State knew that the party has lost the popularity which heralded it into power in May 29, 2015 and the leadership of the party in the state is jittery and resolved to employ its old strategy of falsehood and propaganda…”

Read Moretribuneonlineng

Boko Haram Scare Hits Ondo Communities

Residents of four local government areas in Akoko, Ondo State, are living in fear, following what has been described as the influx of suspected Boko Haram insurgents. Akoko is the gateway to the northern part of the country.

It was learnt that a commercial driver alerted the military about the strange movement of some passengers at Oke-Agbe-Akoko in Akoko Northwest Local Government Area.

The passengers, who were suspected to be insurgents from Chad, were arrested by soldiers.

Following the development, residents and others have organised a one-day interactive session with representatives of security agencies.

Read More: thenationonlineng

Gunmen Abduct CAN Secretary In Ondo

Gunmen, suspected to be kidnappers, have abducted the Executive Secretary of the Cocoa Association of Nigeria,  Mr. Michael Adewunmi, in Akure, the Ondo State capital, on Thursday night.

After the abduction, which reportedly took place at Akinjo Junction, Oshokoti area of the state capital, his black Toyota Lexus SUV was found abandoned with four doors opened. They were also said to have taken his Ipad and mobile phones along.

The victim’s vehicle, with number plate ONDO ANG 149 AA, was reportedly  discovered  by men of the Ondo State Police command and taken to the Ijapo Police Station, Akure.

As of the time of filling this report, the abductors had not made any  contact with the family of the victim but it was learnt that the state police command had swung into action to secure his release.

When reached on the telephone for comments, the Public Relations Officer of the state Police Command, Mr. Wole Ogodo, said the Command had commenced investigation on the matter and will soon rescue the victim.


Dear Gov. Olusegun Mimiko, You Are Not Working For Ondo People! By Orukotan Ayomikun Samuel

Many of South-Western Nigeria’s political figures today only wear Chief Obafemi Awolowo’s (COA’s) trademark cap but lack a great fraction of his mental strength and administrative acumen. Some even wear his eye-glasses as a pretentious similitude of Chief Obafemi Awolowo’s eagle-likened vision that distinguished him among folks during and after his time of life but guess what, these political opportunists lack foresight. One thing is certain- COA influenced his immediate society. Like father, like son they say but there is a huge difference in this figure of speech. I begin to wonder reasons for the extreme mutation.
Sir, On February 21st 2014, I wrote an article to you via Mr Japheth Omojuwa’s blog (www.omojuwa.com) under the caption “Dear Gov. Olusegun Mimiko, you are not working for the Ondo people.” Sir, this same article was again published in the letter category of the Punch’s newspaper on March 13th 2014 under the polemic tag “Sunshine State, stand up and be counted”. Also, on the 7th of March 2014, Sahara Reporters published in their article category the second part of “Oh ye Sunshine State, Stand up and be Counted (2)”. The intents and content of all these syndicated articles all wind up as to the mere fact that you are not working for the interest of your people. Sir, responses followed those critiques, as usual, mails were equally received by me in which many were of the opinion that you are not actually working for the people of the sunshine state. Mr Governor, from my thorough investigation, they are not from the opposition party neither
do they hate you in person but they actually detest the fact that some of the same people whom you had sworn to protect their very interests are going to bed with empty stomachs. Those denied their legitimate entitlements are becoming irresponsible persons to their immediate families and even community.
Sir, I checked the archives a while ago, I found out you owe pensioners their entitlement, you owe teachers two months’ salary already across the state. Succinctly, you owe almost everybody in the state one thing or another.  Even, your responsible children are still being owed their little annual stipend of N100, 000.00 and N10, 000.00 respectively for year 2014.  Sir, the scholarship merit award for year 2014 have not being received by the Ondo State students who applied, met the stipulated requirements and even wrote the Computer-based exam. Of which, it has been stated otherwise to public ears through the radio media that the payment of scholarship and even bursary was approved by you some weeks before the original date of the presidential elections in the country. Surprisingly, only a few students were even paid the bursary stipend of N 10,000.00 while the scholarship to worthy students has not been paid at all.
This unfathomably neglect of the whole award poses a serious challenge on the integrity of you and your government even when N500.00 and N1000.00 respectively were used to register for these awards.  Sir, as I have always believed, you are a poster-child of one of those cliques of public office bearers in Nigeria that do not joke with the virility of the media- it has even become crystal as you rarely grant too many interviews. All owing to the fact that you tend to lend credence to whatever you say outside politics but this time round, it goes against your usual norm, and so, I suspect a missing link between you, your government and the cheated students. Absolutely, something is wrong somewhere. it is either something is wrong with me or your government being managed by you but sir, the last time I checked, I was still in my perfect frame of mind. So, arguably, something is wrong with the other person aforementioned  but then again before history would
judge you sir, those printed lies of government must be taken back to the court of public hearing so that you can reverse the cloak and wear it with the lining on the outside or you provide the wherewithal to settle these cheated students.
Once again sir, how the land lies is unequivocally deafening to the ears and sickening to the heart. Sir, comparing the debt profile of Osun state with Ondo state is utterly irrational. Lest we forget, there is a 13% derivation principle that governs the allocation of revenue to oil producing states as it was enshrined in the 1999 constitution, Osun state is not rich as Ondo state and yet the government of “I WILL WORK FOR YOU” still shamefully came out to say, Osun state is owing their workers 6 months’ salary while Ondo state lags behind the debt profile of Osun state which means the government is better that some states in terms of prompt payment of salaries to workers.
This is a case in point that gives a formal confirmation that no civility in you or your government anymore. Sir, it seems to me that Ondo state is actually broke, not because there are capital projects being constructed around nor because more people were employed into civil service. Where then is our money? In clear terms sir, you are failing the people so seriously. Even in the last presidential elections, you saw how the “hungry and angry” Ondo state indigenes vested their anger on you by voting massively against your party (PDP). No money, but sir, it has become a public knowledge of how much was spent to prosecute the last House of Assembly elections in the state.  So who is deceiving whom?
Now that the people of the Sunshine state lack in the midst of plenty, your monthly quality worth of security vote should become a part of  the sacrifice to fix some of the burning issues in the present land of agony. Dr Mimiko, the people of the Sunshine state are not happy with you, please put sunny smiles on their faces once again.
Bio: Orukotan Ayomikun Samuel is currently a 500level student of the Federal University of Technology Akure, Ondo State
Orukotan Ayomikun Samuel writes from the Federal University of Technology Akure, Ondo via orukotanayomikun@yahoo.com
Views expressed are solely that of author and does not represent views of www.omojuwa.com nor its associates

Ondo Assembly Extends Tenure Of LG Chairmen By Six Months

The Ondo State House of Assembly on Tuesday extended the tenure of the Interim Caretaker Chairmen of the state’s 18 Local Government Councils by six months.

The decision of the House was sequel to a motion moved by the Chairman, Committee on Chieftaincy Affairs, Afolabi Akinsiku, representing Ondo West 1 constituency.

The motion titled, “Elongation of the Local Government Chairmen’s Tenure”, was seconded by Aladetan Oyebo, representing Ilaje 1 constituency.

The two lawmakers had argued that the elongation was necessary to forestall vacuum in governance and to afford people in the state unhindered access to good governance.

The six-month tenure of the council Chairmen, lapsed earlier in the month.