- Claims APC, PDP Aspirants jostling for its ticket
- Gov denies link with branded whisky bottle
James Sowole in Akure
The Social Democratic Party (SDP) saturday said Ondo State Governor, Mr. Rotimi Akeredolu had failed the people of the state, lamenting that his administration could not give the people the real dividends of democracy.
Amid public outrage, however, Akeredolu refuted reports that linked him with branded bottles of whiskey labeled “Aketi Whisky” as part of his campaign for the 2020 governorship election.
SDP’s Deputy National Chairman (South), Dr. Olu Agunloye disapproved of Akeredolu’s administration at a session with journalists in Akure on the state’s next governorship election and other issues in the party.
SDP, a centre-left political organisation, also disclosed that some governorship aspirants seeking nomination on the platforms of All both the Progressives Congress (APC) and the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) had contacted the party to sponsor them for the state governorship election.
But dissenting Akeredolu’s performance in the last three and half years, Agunloye lamented that Akeredolu and APC could not give the people the real dividends of democracy because of lack of manifesto.
Commenting on the performance of the current administration in the last three and half years, Agunloye said the Akeredolu administration had not impacted positively on the people.
He admitted that the administration “has improved in some places but I have not seen much. No reasonable improvement in the education sector. No improvement in the health sector. None in economic empowerment to people.
“Moreover, school fees are not affordable for many parents. Any man campaigning but cannot do what he promised, that person is not a friend of the people. That is the reason we said whoever is coming to SDP must follow the manifesto.”
On the next governorship election, Agunloye said SDP would field a candidate for the election, saying those who have approached the SDP are both from the ruling APC and the opposition PDP as a platform for their ambition.
He said the party that was undergoing reorganisation in Ondo State, had made it clear that it would consider only politicians who would abide by the manifesto of the party.
“The SDP as a political party is undergoing reorganisation. We want to position the party as an alternative for real progressive ideology and party for progress.
“We are not going to give the SDP to somebody just for money. We want people who believe in the party. We cannot allow shenanigans to take over the party,” Agunloye said.
Agunloye, SDP’s governorship candidate in the 2016 governorship election in the state, said part of the reorganisation process of the party, was the recent dissolution of the State Working Committee (SWC) of the party in Ondo State.
He said apart from the fact that the tenure of the dissolved SWC had expired, the Executive Committee comprised old people, who may not be able to drive the new vision of the party.
“We are of the view that the party should be positioned to attract young and vibrant people that can drive the vision of the party in line with it’s manifesto. We have therefore set up a caretaker committee to oversee the affairs of the party for the time being.
“However, we are not sending members of the dissolved Exco away because we still need to tap from their wealth of experience but we felt that the person in the driver’s seat must be more vibrant,” Agunloye said.
On branded whisky bottle, Akeredolu has refuted a media report allegedly linking him with branded bottles of whiskey as part of his campaign for his re-election for a second term.
The picture of a bottle of whiskey carrying the Ondo State logo and labeled ‘Aketi Whiskey’ has been trending on social media. But the governor said he knew nothing about the whiskey bottle, alleging that it was a plot by his political detractors to blackmail him.
In a statement issued by his Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Mr. Ojo Oyewamide yesterday, the governor, urged members of the public to disregard the social media report.
He said all efforts to blackmail him and his administration would not succeed.
The statement read in part: “For the avoidance of doubt, Mr. Governor does not require to produce customized drinks of that nature for his re-election. Neither has he commissioned any associate, friend, or even aides to embark on such a wasteful venture.”