AGAINST the build-up to the preparations ahead September 22 governorship poll in Osun, strong indications emerged on Friday in Osogbo, the state capital on the likely emergence of Dr Akin Ogunbiyi as the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Saturday Tribune authoritatively gathered.
Findings by our correspondent indicated that four gubernatorial contenders on the platform of the main opposition party, including the former Minister for Youth Development, Senator Olasunkanmi Akinlabi, Professor Adeolu Durotoye, Senator Felix Ogunwale and Dr Jide Adeniji have stepped down for Ogunbiyi.
This development followed a marathon meeting held at the residence of one of the bigwigs of the PDP in Osogbo, Senator Olu Alabi, where major stakeholders of the party, including its elder’s forum, met and reached a conclusion that the party’s ticket should be zoned to Osun West Senatorial District.
Impeccable sources informed our correspondent that the meeting was attended by all the governorship aspirants on the platform of the main opposition party in the state.
According to one of the sources, who pleaded anonymity, though the main opposition would still go ahead with its primary election slated for Saturday, some aspirants who are from Osun West, namely Senator Ademola Adeleke, who currently represents Osun West Senatorial District and few others would still go ahead to contest in the exercise.
Confirming the development to our correspondent, in a telephone chat, one of the aspirants, Professor Durotoye said “I am from Osogbo in Osun Central Senatorial District and the party leaders have decided to zone the governorship to the West, which in a way has made me ineligible to contest for the job. The party leaders have equally gone ahead to adopt Dr Akin Ogunbiyi as their candidate”.
ALSO READ: Osun: This development must not be reversed
He continued, “as somebody who has respect for elders and for party’s supremacy, I have to do the needful as that is exactly what has happened. The meeting was held at Dr Olu Alabu residence earlier today (Thursday) in the evening and I have tremendous respect for Alhaji Shuaib Oyedokun, Dr Olu Alabi and the party leadership. Remember I said that the party had zoned the governorship to the West and I am from the Central”.
“You will understand what informed my decision. Apparently, the primary would come up on Saturday because some other aspirants, who are still in the race, especially from the West like Senator Ademola Adeleke. It looks like Alhaji Fatai Akinbade is also in the race. I am a loyal member of the party and I would not exit the party because I am still committed to our party winning the next governorship election in Osun to ensure that we banish hunger and turn the state around”.