…Nobody has been picked– PDP
…we’re watching the drama- Co- contestants
By Dayo Johnson
THERE is confusion in the camp of the governorship candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party in Ondo State, Eyitayo Jegede over the rejection of his choice for deputy by leaders of the party in the state.
Vanguard was informed that aside the name of Jegede’s favourite lkengbonu Gboluga, two additional names have been submitted to him by the leaders of the party in the state for consideration.
They include one of the aspirants whose campaign was adjudged the best during the primary and who is from ilaje, Hon Banji Okunomo and the first female Speaker in the history of the state House of Assembly, Rt Hon Jumoke Akindele.
Jegede had favoured his friend and close ally who is presently a member of the House of Representatives Ikengboju
Gboluga as his deputy in defiance to other stakeholders including party leaders across the state and his co-contestants in the primary.
Vanguard gathered that both the national and state leaders of the party had reportedly impressed it upon whoever emerges as the candidate of the party to consider any of the co-contestants as his running mate.
Reports had it that Jegede jettisoned this agreement and picked his friend to the chagrin of the leaders and other stakeholders.
** He should pick from his co-contestants– Leaders
One of leaders of the party confided in Vanguard that many of them have pitched their tents behind Okunomo for many reasons which include his political strength, where he comes, llaje which is favoured and that age is still on his side.
Speaking in confidence, the leaders said that they are of the opinion that the choice of Gboluga’s “will create a vacuum for the party in the House of Representatives.
“Whether Jegede wins or losses the election we believed a vacuum would be created and we believed none of the parties can boast of winning a bye-election easily. So, it is better such electoral risk is not allowed due to a wrong choice by pur candidate.
The leaders are equally mindful of the huge votes from ilaje which was where the incumbent governor Rotimi Akeredolu also picked his running mate , Lucky Ayedatiwa from.
Vanguard gathered that the preponderance of opinion didn’t favour Gboluga hence the candidate is confused on who to pick and he is buying time.
* Jegede remains a team player– Aide
Meanwhile, one of the aides to Jegede confided in Vanguard that his principal is a team player and would weigh all options before he finally zero down on ” an acceptable personality ” that will enjoy the support of all stakeholders.
He said that the party and the candidate still has before August 18 which is the deadline for substitution to agree on the best for the deputy governorship slot.
* Party douses tension, nobody has been picked as deputy
However to douse tension within the party, its Director of Media and Publicity Zadok Akintoye in a two paragraphs statement said ” Please be informed that a deputy governorship candidate for the forthcoming governorship election in October is yet to be picked for the party.
” Consultation is currently ongoing to determine who would be nominated by the party for that position.
” While some names have been suggested, nobody has been nominated nor favoured by the candidate for that position.
**We are watching events as they unfold- aspirants
Some of the aspirants interviewed on the uneasy calm over the deputy governorship slot said that they are watching the interesting movie.
They said that they would make there position known at the end of the drama.