By Leke Akeredolu
Ondo State All Progressives Congress (APC) governorship candidate Oluwarotimi Akeredolu (SAN) has described Asiwaju Bola Tinubu as the party’s respected leader, who he is waiting for his blessing.
He denied a report that he said Tinubu would be shocked on the outcome of the result of the primary held at the weekend.
Akeredolu spoke with reporters after he was announced winner of the primary.The APC candidate said he was surprised to read such report credited to him, saying going through the content of the report, there was no where he used such word.
The former President of the Nigeria Bar Association (NBA) said he respects Tinubu as the party’s leader and he is always waiting for his blessing on whoever emerges as the APC candidate.
He said: “I never said so. If you read that interview, you will never see where I used such word.
“Tinubu is the leader of the party and I have respect for him.
“He was here in Ondo State during the last governorship election and which I contested as the candidate of the defunct Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN).
“He spent his money and his time and I am sure this time around, he will also be here to support me.
“I always believe that he is somebody that I am waiting to see his blessing on who will emerge from free and fair primary and God has endorsed me.”
The candidate was, however, confident that the party would go into the poll as a united family.
He hailed the electoral committee members headed by Jigawa State Governor Alhaji Muhammad Badaru Abubakar for being faired to the contestants.
“We have witnessed the most transparent, free and fair primary poll.
“We have been talking about you and your electoral committee. I mean all of us – the aspirants – particularly your approach to us sir. It is been wonderful. You are respectful and you gave us the opportunity to be part of this primary. You are accommodating and you listen to us and there was no any time you try to force.
“Today is a great day in the anal of this state. We are 24, who contested in this exercise.
“They are great men and a woman, and who are eminently qualified to be governor of this state.
“I want to appreciate all the aspirants for the wonderful relationship we had throughout the campaign.
“We are looking forward for all of us to work together.
“I have said it over and over that when politics is on competition for position, it will raise a lot of dust.
“It is normal but when the dust is settled, we must work as one family and I know all the aspirants are going to work together as one family so that we can win during the poll.
“We don’t need to give any signal to the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) or the incumbent governor. He knows that we have come and on undoubtedly, we will produce the next governor.
“APC will be united for this campaign, we are going to carry everybody along,” Akeredolu said.
The party’s candidate got 669 votes to beat his closest rival, Mr. Segun Abraham, who garnered 635 votes.
Abraham congratulates APC candidate
The runner up in the governorship primary election of Ondo State All Progressives Congress (APC), Mr. Segun Abraham, yesterday congratulated the winner, Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, SAN.
He promised to work for the party’s victory in the November 26 poll.
Abraham got 635 votes and Akeredolu scored 669 votes. Twenty-three aspirants participated in the primary.
Abraham spoke in an interview with reporters at his home in Akure, the state capital.
The aspirant hailed the party’s electoral committee members, led by Jigawa State Governor Muhammad Badaru Abubakar, for being transparent during the exercise.
He praised his supporters for their love and dedication during the campaign.
He assured them that their efforts would never be in vain.
His words: “I want to thank the people of Ondo State for the love they gave me and I pray that the revival that I prayed for Ondo State, God will bring it back.
“I want to thank my party, APC, which is the most respected party in West Africa. It is the only party that we can trust all over the world on transparency.
“I want to thank all the leaders, particularly President Muhammdu Buhari, for sanitising this nation by reducing corruption.
“As a loyal and dedicated member of APC, I will continue to be loyal and continue to work for the progress of my party.
“I want to tell the people of Ondo State that you are my people and I am your son. I will not turn my back and I will continue to put your matter before me as one of the priorities in whatever capacity that God allows me to assist this state, especially in the area of industrialisation, area of poverty reduction, area of wealth creation and area of reviving of values.
“I want to tell you that by God’s grace, Ondo State will be great. I thank God that has made me to be a Nigerian and I thank God that I am an Ikare man from Akoko.
“I want to thank our fathers and mothers from Akoko for the love and dedication they gave this project.
“They came out united to ensure that I win the primary, they even prayed and fast and they did all they could so that our state also will develop.
“I want to thank the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) and Muslim community for their prayers throughout my campaign. I believe that the state must move forward and I believe that APC must take the state from PDP.”