By Temitope Adedeji, Akure
Leaders of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and All Progressives Congress (APC) have dumped their parties for the Zenith Labour Party(ZLP) ahead of October 10 governorship election in Ondo State.
The immediate Chief of Staff to the state government, Dr Kola Ademujimi led the PDP defectors, while Chief Bepie Akintunde led that of APC into the ZLP at a meeting of the party that was held at Idanre Local Government area.
Speaking on the defection, Ademujimi said the ranks of PDP was depleted on a daily basis since the primary election that brought in Eyitayo Jegede SAN as the candidate of the party.
Ademujimi regretted that the Deputy Governor, Hon Agboola Ajayi was made to leave the party because of the hostility displayed to him by members of the party in the state.
According to him, Ademujimi, who is the Director-General, of Agboola/Gboye Campaign Organization, said he left PDP in order to help realise the ambition of Ajayi as governor of the state
His words “People are defecting from APC, PDP and others ever since the deputy governor picked the governorship ticket of ZLP.
“Agboola Ajayi is out to win this election. Ajayi’s coming to join PDP was an advantage to PDP but they lost it the opportunity. They attacked some of our members because of the Deputy Governor.
Similarly, Mr Jimi Akintade, who led over 100 members of PDP to ZLP in Idanre, said they decided to dump PDP because those they met in PDP were hostile to them.
Akintade said “We went to APC with former President of the Senate, Bukola Saraki, but we left and joined the deputy governor, Agboola Ajayi, when he defected to PDP.
The former Senior Special Assistant (Direct Labour Agency) to Governor Olusegun Mimiko-led administration said: “We were treated like unwanted guests in PDP, that is why we defected to ZLP. ZLP is very accommodating.”
Speaking on the chances of Agboola Ajayi and his running-mate, Engr. Gboye Adegbenro, at the poll, Akintade declared that whoever would win the election in the state would be determined by Idanre Local Government Area.
He noted that whichever party emerged victorious in Idanre Local Government Area would win the election.
Akintade said: “Only two people are contesting. Akeredolu who is running a government for his family by his family, is contesting with Agboola Ajayi.
“It is not yet time for the central, so Jegede is not contesting. The way PDP is treating people from Idanre, PDP cannot win any election here.
“We chose Agboola because whenever he held the fort as acting governor, he paid staff salaries on 24th, 25th day of the month.
Chief Akintunde, who led the APC defectors said: “We left APC because since we had been there, we did not gain anything from them. So we have to defect to ZLP. And ZLP will win the election.”
Receiving the defectors, the leader of ZLP in the Local Government, Dr. Ayewamide Olaiya, declared that the state Deputy Governor, Agboola Ajayi, who is the standard bearer of the party would emerge victorious at the October 10, 2020 gubernatorial election in the state.
He enjoined all members to go home and enlighten the people of the local government to vote for ZLP candidate in the election.
Olaiya said: “We have been working with them(defectors), we will deliver Idanre to ZLP . I still received over 50 from PDP today and over 100 from APC yesterday.
The running-mate of the Deputy Governor, Gboye Adegbenro appreciated the people, and promised that he and Ajayi would not disappoint the people.
He assured that all the people-oriented programmes executed by the former Governor Olisegun Mimiko-led administration would be resuscitated and new one added.
Adegbenro lamented that programmes such as free baby delivery, lighting the streets in Akure have been jettisoned by Governor Akeredolu-led administration.
He assured the people that the ZLP government would review downward school tuition that’s currently not affordable.