By Dayo Johnson
AKURE — CANDIDATE of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, in Ondo State, Mr. Eyitayo Jegede, Tuesday, visited the immediate past governor of the state, Dr. Olusegun Mimiko to solicit his support for the October 10 election.
His visit is coming years after they fell apart and Mimiko defected to the Labour Party.
Mimiko who allegedly imposed Jegede on PDP members during the 2016 governorship election fell out with Jegede over some irreconcilable differences.
Jegede was the Attorney General and Justice Commissioner under Mimiko for eight years.
With the emergence of Mimiko’s Zenith Labour Party, ZLP, and the movement of the deputy governor, Mr. Agboola Ajayi, Jegede decided to make peace with his former boss.
Sources in the Ondo country home of Mimiko said that Jegede and five chieftains of the PDP visited him on Monday evening and held a closed-door meeting.
A PDP leader told Vanguard: “Eyitayo has visited his principal and benefactor at last but it is unfortunate that he is just doing it now after Mimiko’s Zenith Labour Party had picked Ajayi as its candidate. This third force is almost consuming our party as many bigwigs across the state are already dumping the party unannounced.”
PDP leaders angry with Jegede
It was, however, gathered that some PDP leaders are angry that Jegede went back “crawling to Mimiko begging for forgiveness” after it was glaring that he is behind the emergence of the third force to hit back at him.
A top PDP leader said: “It is just formality. We know where Mimiko’s mind is. We don’t expect anything from the visit; he just wants to satisfy some party supporters who are putting pressure on him to visit the former governor and make peace.”
It’s a courtesy visit to my former boss— Jegede
But, Jegede, in his reaction to the visit described it as a courtesy visit to his former boss. The Head, Media Research, Eyitayo Jegede Campaign Organisation, EJCO, Samuel Fasua said: “I went to the home of my former boss, Dr. Olusegun Mimiko, on a private visit, not more than a courtesy call; notwithstanding that we belong to different political parties.”
His visit is coming too late- ZLP leader
A leader of the ZLP told Vanguard that Jegede’s reconciliatory moves were rather too late. It is like crying when the head is off the neck/ It is just a waste of time. The great Iroko has pitched his tent with another formidable politician ahead of the election.”
Contacted, Mimiko’s media aide, John Akinduro confirmed the visit but declined to give further details.
Ajayi’s posters adorn ZLP secretariat in Ondo
Meanwhile, posters and banners of Ajayi have flooded the streets of Akure and the ZLP Secretariat.
The state chairman of the party, Mr. Joseph Akinlaja said he is ready to receive Ajayi and other new entrants into the party.
Akinlaja said: “You would recall my address during our party primary election that we are going to run for the governorship election of Ondo State and win. After the party primaries of other parties, our ZLP has become the beautiful bride of all parties. For those coming including Mr. Ajayi, they are all welcome into our great party.”
Ajayi shuns PDP State congress
The deputy governor, Mr. Agboola Ajayi was conspicuously absent at the state congress of the PDP held, yesterday, in Akure.
Ajayi’s absence at the congress confirmed his defection to ZLP as his aides and supporters were equally absent
Only delegates from his Ese- Odo council area of the state were seen at the venue of the congress.
One of his aides confided in Vanguard that their boss was away in Abuja to perfect his defection plan slated for Thursday and Friday this week.
Ajayi, according to findings, will be going to his Apoi ward in Ese- Odo tomorrow to resign his membership of the PDP and the same time register as a member of the ZLP.