Accept Ondo primary outcome, Ondo APC tells Jimoh, others

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The Ondo State chapter of the All Progressives Congress has appealed to all the party aspirants who lost the ticket in the April 20 governorship primary to join hands with the winner of the election so that they can win the November 16 governorship poll.

The state Publicity Secretary of the APC, Alex Kalejaiye, stated this on Wednesday in Akure, the state capital, while reacting to a statement credited to one of the aggrieved aspirants, Senator Jimoh Ibrahim, who reportedly described the governorship primary as fraud.

Kalejaiye insisted that the primary conducted by the Kogi State Governor, Usman Ododo, was credible and that all the aspirants needed to accept the exercise’s outcome.

He said, “I am surprised that a Senator of the Federal Republic of Nigeria would categorically describe the governorship primary election conducted by men of integrity in our party as a fraud.

“The election committee under the chairmanship of Alhaji Ahmed Usman Ododo did a commendable job. One would have expected all the aspirants to appreciate the level of commitment and dedication deployed by the committee, accept the outcome of the exercise, and start making plans for November in the interest of the party.

“I am sure the senator, who hails from Okitipupa, where the primary was conducted twice, must have been quoted out of context. He benefited from the party, and would do everything possible to subsume personal gains under larger interest. The party appeals to all the aspirants, including the distinguished senator, to accept the verdict of the Ododo-led committee, the highly rated appeal committee, and make their structures available for the party ahead of November.”

Ibrahim at a press conference in Abuja on Tuesday, described the primary as the biggest electoral fraud in Nigeria that must not be allowed to stand in the interest of internal party democracy.

The senator representing Ondo South noted that the alleged frauds were well captured in the reports obtained from the Independent National Electoral Commission, which shows that an election was not held in 159 out of 203 wards and 15 out of 18 local government councils in the state.

He disclosed further that the alleged manipulations was so appalling that even as one of the contestants in the election, he was unable to vote, which made him to call the National Chairman of the party , Abdullahii Ganduje , who according to him, sent some electoral officers to his house for him to cast his vote .

He said, “Since my house is not a designated polling unit or centre for the election, I turned down the offer of the electoral officers.”

The senator noted that he had taken legal action against the exercise in the interest of democracy in Ondo State, explaining that the suit was initiated within the time frame prescribed by relevant provisions of the Electoral Act 2022 and would be sustained up to the Supreme Court.

“Two clear prayers are being sought for; in the court as far as mega fraud called Ondo APC gubernatorial primary election is concerned. The two prayers are that the sham carried out on Saturday, April 20, 2024, should be canceled for fresh one to be conducted and for delisting of APC from ballot in the November 2024 gubernatorial election in Ondo State,” Ibrahim stated.