Ahead of the October 20 governorship election in Ondo state, the committee set up by the Unity Forum in the All Progressive Congress to screen the governorship aspirants have agreed on a consensus candidate to contest the party’s primary with the incumbent governor Rotimi Akeredolu.
The Forum however denied division in the committee as raised by those who claimed to be Foot Soldiers within the group.
Aspirants screened include Chief Olusola Oke, Senator Ajayi Boroffice, Bukola Adetula, Jimi Odimayo, Olayide Adelami, Olarewaju Kassim, Oyedeke life, Mrs Jumoke Ajasin Anifowose and Banji Ayiloge are eyeing Akeredolu seat.
The party had fixed its primary for July while the election is scheduled for October by INEC.
It was gathered that the seven man committee headed by the former Senator Yele Omogunwa have submitted their report to the Special Purpose Committee headed by a former deputy governor, Alhaji Ali Olanusi.
The Special Purpose Committee according to sources would soon meet to make public their choice. Confirming this, the secretary of the Professionals in Ondo Unity Forum, Ralph Adetimehin said the Adhoc committee with a sole mandate of selecting a unified aspirant for the forum has submitted its report.
“The Adhoc committee was given a mandate to interview, interact, assess and review the presentations of all the aspirants within the fold of the forum and they were to come up with a recommendation on who should be the aspirant of the forum in the coming gubernatorial primary election of our great party.
” The general acceptability of the Adhoc Committee prompted all the gubernatorial aspirants to attend the screening exercise as scheduled by the committee.
“The Adhoc Committee has since interviewed, interacted, and reviewed the presentations of all the aspirants and has concluded its assignment.
” ln line with the term of reference given to the committee, we are aware it has submitted a sealed report to the Special Purpose Committee for its consideration as soon as the mood of the nation improves.
Adetimehim said members of the unity forum “have absolute confidence in the Special Purpose Committee, the Adhoc Committee and the leadership of Ondo APC Unity Forum, led by Alhaji Ali Olanusi and other leaders of the forum.
He however disowned and faulted a statement by the purported foot soldiers of the forum that the committee had compromised and therefore failed to agree on a consensus candidate.
Adetimehin said that ” It is worrisome that these few individuals, who are not members of the Unity Forum, could choose this odd time to play politics of lies and mudslinging.
“We would like to also inform the public that from our findings, those behind this mischief and lies belong to two classes. “The first class are those non members of the Forum who by sympathy have preferred aspirant they believe will emerge, they have suddenly developed fear that their preferred governorship aspirants are not likely to emerge.
“Therefore, these few individuals must splash mud of lies and allegations against the members of the committee who were carefully selected and approved by all the aspirants based on verified parameters.
“The other class are the few individuals who are already getting set to defect to the PDP and are afraid of the rising profile of the Ondo APC Unity Forum thereby ready to sponsor some willing allies in the first group, who have been conquered by hunger and fear, to destabilize Unity Forum before they take their leave to PDP where their hearts now belong.
According to him ” The press statement contained the names and signatures of people who are not members of Unity Forum but merchants of lies.
Adetimehin said that ” As we await the reports of the Adhoc Committee, we advise these agents of destabilization to desist from being purveyors of lies and wicked propaganda.