There are eight contestants for the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) ticket for the October governorship election in Ondo State.
They are Agboola Ajayi, Eyitayo Jegede, Boluwaji Kunlere, Eddy Olafeso, Ben Okunomo, Bode Ayorinde, Godday Erewa and Sola Ebiseeni.
The primary which is expected to come up on today (Wednesday), at Dome Centre, Akure, is chaired by the governor of Enugu State, Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi.
On Monday, the leadership of PDP led by Uche Secondus, held a meeting with all the aspirants who signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to support any candidate who emerges at the gubernatorial primary election.
Whoever emerges as the PDP candidate is expected to be the main challenger to Governor Rotimi Akeredolu, who is the candidate of the ruling party, APC.
PREMIUM TIMES highlights the profiles of the contenders for the PDP governorship ticket.
A lawyer and businessman, he has been into politics since the 80s and has served in different capacities as a member of the Social Democratic Party (SDP) the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and recently, the All Progressives Congress (APC).
He was a Chairman of Ese-Odo Local Government Area between 2004 and 2007 after which he was elected to the Federal House of Representatives to represent Ilaje/Ese-Odo federal constituency.
He was the chairman, house committee on NDDC between 2007 and 2010. He was also a member of various committees, which include gas, habitat, justice and industry between 2007 and 2011.
He left the PDP for APC to contest as running mate to Rotimi Akeredolu, in the November 26, 2016 governorship election. They were sworn-in on February 24, 2017.
Mr Ajayi fought with his boss ahead of this year’s election. He dumped the APC and returned to PDP where he is currently vying to become the party’s flag bearer.
Mr Jegede is a Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN) from Ipele town, near Owo in Ondo State. In May 2009, he was appointed the Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice.
He is also a former Chancellor of Anglican Communion of Jalingo, Taraba State. He was once the Chancellor of Anglican Dioceses of Yola and a member of Implementation Committee of American University, Yola, Adamawa State, as well as a member, Chairman Board of Governors, ABTI Academy International School and member, Board of Trustees, Elizade University, Ilara Mokin, Ondo State.
Mr Jegede was the winner of the PDP primary in 2016, polling 760 votes. He is one of the most popular aspirants in the opposition party and has vowed to defeat other contestants.
He is an indigene of the Igbotako in Okitipupa Local Government Area of Ondo State. Mr Kunlere is a lawyer and former senator for Ondo South.
He contested the Senate seat for Ondo South in April 2007 on the Labour Party platform, but was defeated.
In March 2009, he was appointed Special Adviser to Governor Olusegun Mimiko on Political Affairs and Legal Matters.
In August 2010, he resigned from this position so he could compete for the Ondo South Senatorial District slot.
He was elected senator in April 2011 national elections under the Labour Party.
He is a graduate of pure and applied biochemistry with upper class division from the Federal University of Technology, Akure, Ondo State in year 2001.
Mr Okunomo is from Ilaje local government.
He was the spokesperson of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) workforce in the nine oil producing states in Nigeria between 2007-2010.
He served as chairman of Ilaje local government in Ondo-State from 2011-2013.
He is also a former publicity secretary of the PDP in Ondo State.
He was born in Okitipupa in Ondo State and obtained First Class honors in English from the Obafemi Awolowo University in 1985.
He has experience in the courier industry, working in managerial capacities in Red Star Express and DHL International for over a decade.
He also held various positions in the PDP in Ondo State including Secretary PDP, Ondo State 2007 and Chairman, PDP State Contact Committee.
He has been a member of the Institute of Management since 1990 and Marketing Association of Nigeria since 1991.
Mr Olafeso was elected Vice National Chairman (South-west) in the PDP elective convention held in December 2017.
Mr Ebiseni is a human rights activist, lawyer, politician, and Chancellor Ilaje Diocese, Anglican Communion.
He represented Ondo at the World Conference of Local Authorities in Oslo Norway, 1991.
He was appointed director, Oluwa Glass Company, chairman of the state law commission, and commissioner by two different administrations.
He was a member of the 8th Federal House of Representatives; Representing the Owo/Ose Federal Constituency.
He served as the chairman of the tactical committee on economic reforms, chairman of the house ad-hoc committee on economic recession, and deputy chairman of house committee on rules and business.
Mr Ayorinde is the author of “Banking Reform in Nigeria: The Law, The Prospects and The Challenges”.
He is also the Pro Chancellor and Chairman of the Governing Council, Achievers University, Owo.
Mr Erewa is an industrialist from Ilaje. Not much is known about him.
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