Nigeria’s ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) has accused a former governor of Ondo State, Olusegun Mimiko, of plotting a third term in office through the governorship candidate of the Zenith Labour Party (ZLP), Agboola Ajayi.
Mr Ajayi is the current deputy governor to Rotimi Akeredolu, who is seeking a second term in office on the platform of the APC.
Mr Mimiko, who served the constitutionally permitted two terms as Ondo governor, at the flag-off of the ZLP campaign held barely ten days ago, cautioned electorates against voting candidates of the ruling APC and the main opposition PDP in the October 10 governorship election in the state.
He expressed confidence in the deputy governor, Mr Ajayi, who defected to the ZLP after a failed attempt to clinch the PDP governorship ticket shortly after a fallout with the state’s incumbent governor in late June.
“Stay away from vote buying and don’t be intimidated by stolen funds of the opposition. Ajayi will bring good governance and jobs,” PREMIUM TIMES had reported Mr Mimiko, saying
The APC in a statement issued on Tuesday portrayed the ZLP governorship candidate as a potential puppet whose campaign has been centred around Mr Mimiko rather than himself.
It also blamed Mr Mimiko for what it called a miserable performance of the PDP in the state due to his “political divide and rule tactics in the party and government.”
“Under Mimiko, government projects and patronage were disapproportionately distributed only based on political servitude not priority needs of the State.
“Little wonder many of Mimiko’s associates have ditched him and are now frontline leaders of the APC, in firm support of our candidate, incumbent Governor Rotimi Akeredolu.
“It is understandable that the ZLP’s supposed governorship candidate has nothing to campaign on after juncketing several political parties to purchase their governorship ticket to contest the October 10 election in Ondo state,” the APC deputy national spokesperson, Yekini Nabena, said as he highlighted Mr Akeredolu’s achievements in his last three years in office.
Meanwhile, prior to the emergence of the incumbent governor as the APC’s flag bearer, PREMIUM TIMES had reported instances where some APC leaders in the state had labelled Mr Akeredolu as incompetent and least performing governor in the history of the state.
They also described him as the core cause of the recently doused factionalisation in the state’s branch of the party.
Most of the aggrieved APC leaders such as Olusola Oke, Ajayi Boroffice, Ife Oyedele, among others, are now backing Mr Akeredolu’s re-election.