Rather than abate, the crisis over the emergence of Mr Rotimi Akeredolu (SAN) as the candidate of All Progressives Congress (APC) for Ondo State governorship election fixed for November 26 worsened Monday as leaders of the party asked for the outright cancellation of the exercise.
The aggrieved leaders petitioned the Appeal Committee of the party protesting the outcome of Saturday’s governorship primary that produced Akeredolu as the candidate of the party.
The leaders from Akure South, Ondo East and West Local Government area of the state described the primary election as a sham and prayed for the cancellation of the exercise.
The petitioners including the APC Central senatorial chairman, Mr Adegboyega Adedipe, the Ondo East Chairman, Mr Akintunde Samuel and Mr Adeola Ademulegun for Ondo West APC exposed what they described as the ‘behind the scene’ manipulation of the exercise.
They made allegations of fraud, inducement, intimidation and delegates swap before and during Saturday’s primary election.
The aggrieved APC leaders called for outright cancellation of the primary in order to pave way for fresh exercise that would reflect true reality of the election.
The petition stated that: “A strange delegate list was introduced on the night of the election after everybody has gone to sleep only for us to wake up in the morning of the election to see a massively corrupted delegate list.
“Names of 47 percent of the delegates in Ondo East were either deleted or substituted with people who are unknown to the party as executive members. Some of the injected names are not even aware of the development and so did not come for the primary election.
“We wrote a petition to the primary Election Committee Chairman on the morning of the election and it reiterated that only people that had been voting in previous primaries would be allowed to vote with a promise to stand down the voting process for Ondo East and West Local Government Areas. We were shocked that the committee never honoured the pledge.
“In all, a total number of 64 names were injected into the delegates’ list. The names were unknown to the party. For instance, somebody who never contested any election, and some even unknown to the party suddenly became ward chairmen in wards four, six, two and seven of Ondo East Local Government.”
The aggrieved APC members maintained that they were not against the beneficiary of the alleged fraud, but that of the fraudulent process that produced manipulated result.