By Damisi Ojo, Akure
Ondo State Governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu has drawn a battle line with leaders of the All Progressives Congress (APC), who are operating on the platform of “APC Unity Forum”, led by Alhaji Alli Olanusi.
Speaking at his third anniversary dinner held at the weekend in Akure, Akeredolu said he was ready to fight members of the APC Unity, who have allegedly been frustrating attempt by the governor to get a second term ticket.
The majority of the aggrieved leaders of APC in the state belong to the Unity Forum, including Dr. Olusegun Abraham; Senate Deputy Leader Prof Ajayi Boroffice; Chief Olusola Oke; Ifeoluwa Oyedele and Bukola Adetula. The group is headed by former deputy governor Olanusi.
Reacting to “aborted” peace meetings between his camp and the Unity Forum, Akeredolu insisted that he was no longer interested in such meetings and would be ready to fight members of the group.
The governor, who said that the peace talks had not been working, used the event to officially declare his ambition to run for a second term.
He said that he had accepted the calls of the people from quarters and backgrounds that he should re-contest.
Akeredolu said he was moved by the magnitude of 4+4 signs that numerous people of the state had been displaying.
Akeredolu, who was full of appreciation to the people, thanked members of the state executive council, traditional rulers, religious bodies, party members and supporters, family members, civil servants, labour leaders, friends, well-wishers and others for their support for the past three years.
He said his administration would deliver on its electoral promises and entrench the dividends of good governance for the improvement of the standard of living of the people.
Disturbed by the friction within the ruling APC in Ondo State, its pioneer chairman, Isaac Kekemeke, has urged the State Executive Council (SEC) of the party to harmonise all factions ahead of the October 10 governorship election.
Speaking with reporters in Akure yesterday, Kekemeke, the former Secretary to the State Government (SSG), noted that many APC members, who could add value to the party, were excluded from the party activities by the present executives.
He, however, allayed the fear that the crisis would cost the party victory.
Kekemeke expressed confidence that APC is strong enough to win any election in Ondo State, adding that the party will win the coming election.