Jegede: Wẹ Will Stop APC from Rigging 2020 Election

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Eyitayo Jegede
  •  Says Ondo not a conquered territory
  •  Students clash over Akeredolu’s second term

James Sowole in Akure

The governorship candidate of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Ondo State, Mr. Eyitayo Jegede (SAN) yesterday warned that the people of the state would resist the All Progressives Congress (APC) from manipulating the next governorship election in the state like it did in 2016.

Also, on Friday, no fewer than 10 persons sustained varying degrees of injury when students of Adeyemi College of Education, Ondo and Olusegun Agagu University of Science and Technology (OASUTECH), Okitipupa clashed with the Aketi Students Support Group over distribution of palliatives.

Jegede gave the warning during a programme on Crest FM in Akure, the Ondo State capital yesterday, advising those plotting to rig the next poll for the incumbent governor, Mr. Rotimi Akeredolu (SAN) to stop at the boundary of the state.

The immediate past Secretary to the State Government, Mr. Ifedayo Abegunde had resigned from the Akeredolu administration in protest after the Deputy Governor, Mr. Agboola Ajayi, also defected from the APC to the PDP.

After resigning his appointment a fortnight ago, Abegunde alleged that the APC and its power brokers rigged the 2016 governorship election for the incumbent governor against Jegede, the then candidate of the PDP.

Jegede, an erstwhile Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice in the state, also said the state “is not a conquered people or territory,” saying the masses of Ondo State would not allow a repeat of the 2016 experience.

During the radio programme yesterday, Jegede warned that the masses of Ondo State “will no longer allow a repeat of the 2016 experience. Ondo State is not a conquered people or territory. If you are coming to the state to rig, stop at the boundary.

“This is because, our people have learned from that experience and are now on their toes, to resist any attempt by anybody to subvert their will.

“I have known my brother, Abegunde for a long time. He said the truth when he said Akeredolu did not win the 2016 election and that it was rigged for him.”

Jegede also described as baseless, a campaign smear that he would pursue ‘Akure agenda’, being a native of Akure, the state’s capital, if voted into power.

The PDP candidate said: “I am a native of Akure. I am not ashamed of it. But I can also be classified as a native of other communities in the state. I had gone round, visiting the riverside areas of Ilaje and Ese-Odo.

“I could feel what they were going through. From that area up to Ile-Oluji and Okeigbo, they do not have electricity at all; unlike Akure that has a little supply.

“So we are going to provide electricity in these areas and also build them hospitals as they lack medical facilities. Certainly, that cannot be an Akure agenda?”

He urged the electorate in the state to cast aside party affiliations and vote in a responsive government, which could deliver democracy dividends.

According to him, what Ondo State needs at this period is an administration that can provide basic needs which the administration of Akeredolu has failed to produce in four years.

He said: “Our people are suffering. For instance, during my tour to the Ilaje area in 2016 to see how the people were faring, I found out that these people had problems of water, inadequate accommodation facilities, and that most of their areas are infested with mosquitoes, among others.’

On Friday, there was a clash involving the Aketi Students Support Group and students of Adeyemi College of Education, Ondo and Olusegun Agagu University of Science and Technology (OASUTECH), Okitipupa, who resisted the distribution of the palliatives

The group was said to have attempted to force some students of the two institutions to endorse Akeredolu for a second term.

The National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS), Ondo State Chapter, confirmed the incidents in which 10 persons received varying degrees of injury.

In a statement by its Chairman, Afeez Akinteye and its Director of Media and Publicity, Adekunle Oluwatayo, the association called on the state Commissioner of Police, Bolaji Salami, to order the arrest of all the culprits immediately before it snowballs into a full violence.

The Aketi Students Support Group led by a former president of the National Association of Ondo Students (NAOS), Olanrewaju Emmanuel, claimed that the Aketi visited all tertiary institutions in the state to coerce into the group students who are from the state.

But some students of Adeyemi College of Education who were on campus were said to have resisted the group from gaining entry into the school.

The President, Students Union, OAUSTECH, Okunomo Damilola, told newsmen that the group arrived at the gate of the campus to distribute palliatives and asked few students on campus to declare support for Akeredolu’s second term bid by taking photograph with them.

According to the president, we told him we could not do that because we are not pleased with the present situation in our schools.

While reacting to the incident, Emmanuel denied that his group attacked their colleagues. However, according to him, his group was attacked by some miscreants at Adeyemi College of Education.