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ONDO Governorship: APC Appeal Panel ‘nulifies’ Akeredolu’s victory, recommends rerun

The Ondo State All Progressives Congress (APC) Primary Appeal Committee has recommended the cancellation of the disputed shadow poll that threw up Mr. Rotimi Akeredolu (SAN) as the governorship candidate.

The committee headed by Mrs. Hellen Bendega also recommended that a rerun primary should be held immediately to beat the deadline set by the Independent National Electoral Committee (INEC).
The panel also suggested that the party’s national leadership should revert to the earlier delegates’ list, which was distributed to aspirants in Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), shortly before the controversial primary.
According to the committee, a final and properly harmonised list acceptable to all contenders should be compiled, adding that the delegates’ list should be released, not on the eve of the primary, but much earlier to give sufficient time for the take-off of elections and avoid being used in favour of any aspirant.
The panel pointed out that although there was substantial compliance with rules during the primary, “that consideration may not be sufficient reason to ignore such serious and weighty, identified irregularities”.
“In view of the change mantra of this administration, it is pertinent that the party blazes the trail by refusing to condone a less than perfect exercise. We, therefore, formally submit our recommendations for the National Working Committee (NWC) to use its discretionary powers in line with the APC constitution and the Electoral Act to arrive at a final decision,” the committee said.
No fewer than 24 aspirants participated in the primary conducted at the Dome, Akure, the state capital on September 3. The exercise, which was widely condemned by party chieftains and observers, was supervised by Jigawa State Governor Abubakar Badaru.
The committee received six petitions. The complaints came from three aspirants; Chief Olusola Oke, Dr. Olusegun Abraham and Prof. Ajayi Boroffice; the Chairman of Ondo Central APC, Mr. Adegboyega Adedipe, his Ondo East counterpart, Mr. Akintunde Temitope, and Mrs. Toyin Ajinde, a delegate.
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