Some leaders of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Ondo State have vowed to frustrate the re-election of Ondo State governor, Rotimi Akeredolu, over his alleged role in the party’s loss of the presidential poll in the state.
At a stakeholders’ meeting on Wednesday in Akure, the party leaders accused Mr Akeredolu and his supporters of anti=party activities.
A member of the APC Board of Trustees, Ali Olanusi, who was the deputy governor under Olusegun Mimiko, said there was a high level of anti-party activities during the general election in Ondo State.
The meeting was called by a faction of the party opposed to the governor, to review the performance of the ruling party in the presidential and National Assembly elections in the state.
Mr Olanusi accused Mr Akeredolu of instigating members into anti-party activities after failing to secure the party’s tickets for his candidates for the National Assembly elections.
He said the governor directed APC members to work for candidates of Action Alliance (AA) in the 2019 general elections in the state.
The BOT member said although some bigwigs in the party had before the polls raised the alarm over the anti-party activity of Mr Akeredolu, the leadership of the party in Abuja failed to act before the elections.
“If Buhari had won the presidential election in Ondo State, Governor Rotimi Akeredolu would have gotten the credit despite working against the party, APC in Ondo State,” Mr Olanusi said.
“And we had envisaged this problem in Ondo State, and that is why we cried to the national leadership of the party on the anti-party activities of Governor Akeredolu.
“But they failed to listen to us, and didn’t recognise our voice then. For me, I am for the growth and unity of the party. And we shall progress.
“So, we must not allow the monster, who is an ingrate and has no fear of God, including respect for elders and colleagues, to come back and rule us here again.”
Speaking, Isaac Kekemeke, a former Chairman of APC in the state, said the fund disbursed to the state by the national leadership of the party for the 2019 general election was diverted by Governor Akeredolu.
Mr Kekemeke said Mr Akeredolu was the major financier of the Action Alliance in the state. He said there was a need for party leaders to intervene on the anti-party activities of the governor before the 2020 Ondo governorship election.
“The governor worked against the party and he really didn’t want President Muhammadu Buhari to win the 2019 presidential election because they did not work for him in Ondo State. Rather they all worked for their Action Alliance party,” he said.
But the governor in his response said the meeting was only that of politicians who did not represent the APC.
The Commissioner for Information, Yemi Olowolabi, told PREMIUM TIMES that the allegations raised by the “stakeholders” were untrue.
“There is no APC other than the one led by Ade Adetimehin,” he said. “Whatever their statement from that meeting amounted to nothing.”
According to him, Mr Akeredolu did not work against the president as alleged by the group, stating that instead, the governor worked assiduously for Mr Buhari.
“He purchased about 30 vehicles and opened offices for the campaign in all the 18 local governments,” he said.
“What happened was a revelation of democracy because two weeks after, the APC won in all the areas where it lost the presidential election.”
Mr Olowolabi also accused the faction of orchestrating the violence that attended the House Of Assembly elections in the state, where lives were lost and property worth millions of Naira damaged.
“The governor never engaged in anti-party activity, the national secretariat is aware of what happened,” the commissioner insisted.