The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Campaign Council for Ondo governorship election has vehemently condemned the attack on its candidate, Eyitayo Jegede by alleged hooded men in the convoy of Governor Rotimi Akeredolu and candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC).
About six persons reportedly sustained varying degree of injuries while five vehicles in the campaign trains of both APC and PDP were vandalised as supporters of the two dominant parties in the October 10 polls clashed Wednesday, at Oba-Akoko in Akoko South West Local Government area of the State.
Reacting to this, PDP said the attack confirmed that the Ondo State Governor, Akeredolu is mortally afraid of Jegede, as a result of his soaring popularity and now seeks every means to scuttle the decision of the people elect him Jegede on at the election.
The party in a statement by signed by Kola Ologbondiyan, Chairman, Publicity Sub-Committee of its Campaign Council declared that it is unfortunate that Governor Akeredolu will opt to tread this path, as already confirmed by the self-confessed APC militant and former APC chairman in Ondo state, Isaac Kekemeke, who openly boasted that the Governor was behind the violent attacks against its candidate and campaign in the State.
The PDP National Publicity Secretary said: “Evidently, Governor Akeredolu and his party are intimidated by Eyitayo Jegede’s soaring rating as well as the warm reception he has been receiving from leaders and groups across the state and had to attack him in Oba Akoko, where he was received by the highly revered Oloba of Oba, Oba Nathaniel Adegoroye.
“We know that Governor Akeredolu’s uneasiness over our candidate had heightened following the overwhelming crowd of Ondo people who graced our campaign flag-off last Saturday to establish their unbending solidarity for Eyitayo Jegede.
“Of course, our candidate has become the rallying point of the people in their quest to rescue their state from the misrule of Governor Akeredolu.
“Our campaign appreciates the courage displayed by the people of Ondo state in resisting the APC assailants and defending our candidate. Indeed, but for the intervention of the good people of Ondo state, who immediately came out to defend our candidate, the situation would have been worse”.
He also appreciated well-meaning APC members who had called the PDP candidate and its campaign to condemn the attack and show solidarity to the party’s candidate.
Ologbondiyan however condemned the action of the Police and other security operatives attached to Governor Akeredolu’s convoy for taking no steps to stop the attackers, who also threatened other innocent citizens.
“Our campaign further restates the call by our party and other well-meaning Nigerians to Governor Akeredolu to stop being a sour loser as he would not be the first state governor in our country that would lose in a election due to poor performance.
“Governor Akeredolu should come to terms with the fact that his time is up. He should accept the decision of the people of Ondo state to replace him with Eyitayo Jegede as no amount of violence, threats, mudslinging and propaganda can change that resolve.
“On our own part, our candidate, who is the people’s candidate, will remain undeterred in our focus to provide good governance for the people of Ondo state.
“In any case, let it also be known that while our party and candidate will continue to canvass for peace, the PDP and the people of Ondo state will not fold our hands in the face of any such attack but will not hesitate to use every means necessary and available in a democracy to confront and vanquish these enemies of the people” he stated.