…We can’t win governorship election – PDP Chieftain predicts
By Dayo Johnson
THE camp of the Zenith Labour Party in Ondo state was swelled Monday as one of the governorship aspirants of the Peoples Democratic Party, Hon Banji Okunomo resigned his membership to joined the party.
Okunomo who was the former Publicity Secretary of the PDP and a former council chairman came fifth with 90 votes during the party’s primary in July.
He announced his resignation from the PDP at an Hotel in Okitipupa council area of the State.
Okunomo said he would officially leave the party with over 15, 000 members of the PDP across the 18 local governments of Ondo State during a formal declaration to be announced at a later date.
Recall that the choice of the deputy governor picked by the party’s governorship candidate, Eyitayo Jegede had continued to polarise the party and deepened its crisis.
National and state leaders of the party have pleaded with Jegede to pick one of the aspirants that contested the primary with him but he ignored them.
He later picked a National Assembly member, Hon lkengboju Gboluga.
Many of the aspirants have since withdrawn their support and went to their shell after Jegede picked Gboluga as his running mate.
Several meetings called by the candidate were shunned by the aspirants to show their displeasure to happenings within the party.
**** We can’t win October governorship election – PDP chieftain
A chieftain of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the State, Mr Solomon Bitire has said that the party cannot win the October 10 Governorship election.
Bitire pointedly declared that nothing can stop the PDP from losing in the coming election.
The former council chairman who spoke at a summit organised by Ondo South youths in Okitipupa said that ” no deputy governor could produce the stimulus needed by Ondo South Senatorial District even if thousands of deputy governors were picked from the region.
He said Ondo South has suffered much due to political marginalisation.
Bitire said the only way to right the wrong was for the district to produce the governor.
“If thousands of deputy governors are produced by our region, it can’t give us the necessary stimulus we need in Ondo South.
“Ondo South is lagging behind in everything and there are no other means to solve our challenges than to produce a governor.
“Don’t be deceived, a deputy governor is a spare tyre whose survival is at the discretion of his boss, the governor.
“I saw it all when I joined the advocacy for Ondo South to produce the governor. The political history of Ondo South has shown that the election of governors in the past was on the basis of turn by turn.
“No senatorial district should hold sway unto power. As I have always said, where a party didn’t respect the culture of zoning by producing their candidate from the right zone, then the electorate will correct the injustices during voting.
“I am a PDP man, but PDP has already lost this election before the conduct of the election on October 10 for not doing what is right.
“The ball is in the court of all of you to save the future of Ondo South and decide the way forward, because I, Solomon Bitire, will not do that for you. I have played my part and it is now over to you.”
**** Face the voters initiative organises debate for governorship candidates
An independent and non-partisan Ondo state-based stakeholders in the media and civil society, Face The Voter Initiative is to organise a media debate among the governorship candidates in the state
Chairman of the group, Dr Gbenga Abimbola said in Akure that the event will hold on September 29th and October 4th at the international event centre in the state capital and also be broadcast live on Radio and Television stations based in the state as well as on digital platforms.
He said that the debate is aimed at creating a credible platform for an effective interface between candidates and the people in the first instance, and among the candidates themselves.
Abimbola noted that the goal of the election debates is to promote political tolerance, constructive dialogue and selfless service to the people.
“Election debate provides a neutral platform where candidates of political parties are grilled by independent moderators on critical issues to enable the audience to compare the candidates’ positions on such issues.
“As a matter of fact, debates are often the only time during a campaign when candidates are together at the same time in the same place.
He added that “debates also seek to fill the gap created by the one-way communication model that characterizes campaigns whereby politicians only talk at the people without allowing people to ask questions.”