Governor Olusegun Mimiko of Ondo State on Sunday charged members of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) to continue with their campaign just as he expressed optimism that the injustice done with the substitution of the name of the PDP gubernatorial flag bearer in Ondo State, Eyitayo Jegede will not stand.
Mimiko, who made this charge during a stakeholders meeting held at the International Event Centre (The Dome), said what happened with that substitution was a contrived conspiracy, saying “the decision of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) cannot find comfort in justice, in principle, in law and in morality.”
Mimiko who stated categorically that Jegede’s name will be in the ballot, said members of the factional PDP in the state had been employing delay tactics to ensure that PDP does not contest in the election, but stated that the distraction by the fringe group would not work.
He observed that the contraption remains a bizarre development in the annals of Nigeria’s political history, particularly in the body polity of Ondo State, saying that it was something bizarre, abnormal and without precedence in polity.
Mimiko stated that the opposition resorted to the blackmail and buying time at the Court “because they knew if Jegede’s name is not in the ballot or not in the race it will pave way for them.”
The governor, however, thanked the people of the state for their matured action and attitude of not resulting to self help and violence even in the face of the unwarranted provocation unleashed through the back door.
His words, “You have comported yourself in very commendable way. Your peaceful but rugged and persistent resistance in the last three and half weeks would go down in record as the new Ondo State.”
He commended the people of the state for not taking laws into their hands and for not ventilate their anger in destructive manner and said, “ordinarily, in many climes there could have been violence, uprising but in this state the people made it clear that the peace which had been enjoyed in the last seven and half years will not be truncated.”
He, however, appealed to the people to keep the peace which God has enabled this administration to emplace and said, “I was unhappy with the Abuja magic of substituting Jegede’s name but I appreciate you all for handling the protest in a most matured manner.
Mimiko debunked insinuations that he went to see President Muhammadu Buhari to negotiate his crossing over to the APC or any other political party.
He said, “I had to see the president in my capacity as the Chief Security Officer in Ondo State briefing the Chief Security Officer of the country on the need to allow justice to prevail, pointing out that Mr President gave his commitment to ensure that justice is done,” stating, “I have no course to doubt him.
“Meeting Buhari is not to prepare my journey to APC and why will I join APC when I know we are going to win this election. I was there to intimate him with what is happening in Ondo State.”
The governor took time to assure the people that even now that politics was in the air, he would continue to lubricate the oil of governance more vigorously by working for the people till the last day in office when he hands over.
He appealed for continued support assuring that the choice candidate of Eyitayo Jegede would certainly emerge as the next governor.