As political parties in Ondo State are preparing for the primaries this week, no fewer than 4,500 members of the All Progressives Congress and the Peoples Democratic Party would take part in the election.
At least, 12 aspirants are contesting the APC ticket while eight are vying for the ticket of the PDP at the primary.
In the camp of the APC, according to the state Publicity Secretary of the party, Mr Alex Kalejaiye, over 2,500 delegates would participate in the primary on Monday.
He said, “There would be 12 delegates from each of the 203 wards, 72 from the state executive. We have delegates from local government areas; we have House of Assembly and National Assembly members as automatic delegates. We also have special delegates.”
On the side of the PDP, it was gathered that over 2,000 delegates are expected to participate in the primary of the party scheduled for Wednesday.
The Publicity Secretary of the party, Mr Zadok Akintoye, was not specific about the exact number of the delegates because he was not with the list at the time of speaking with our correspondent but noted that they were over 2,000.
“I am not with the list as I am talking to you now but I’m very sure that we have more than 2,000 delegates,” Akintoye stated.
Meanwhile, there have been various intrigues by the gladiators and other stakeholders in both parties to ensure the parties present credible candidates for the October poll.
An APC governorship aspirant, Mr Ife Oyedele, condemned the alleged imposition of indirect primary to be adopted by the party, stating that it had never happened in the history of the party whereby the mode of primaries would not be communicated to aspirants until few hours to the primary.
“Many of us including the governor (Rotimi Akeredolu) have expressed willingness to participate in the direct primary and we were hoping that was what would be given to us but that has not been the case. However as a loyal party man, I would remain a party man,” he stated.
Another aspirant, Mr Olusola Oke, said by adopting an indirect primary, the party had contravened a part of its constitution.
Oke, who spoke through the Olusola Oke Campaign Organisation, on Saturday, said the party had gone against the wish of the 11 aspirants of the party who wanted the direct primary.
The group said, “As a campaign organisation and stakeholders in the coming election, we wish to bring to the notice of Governor Yaya Bello and our national leaders that the adoption of indirect primary runs contrary to Article 20 of the APC.”
Another aspirant, Mr Jimi Odimayo, who spoke through his media aide, Mr Yemi Akintimide, however, said he would abide by whatever decision the party made on the primary.
“He (Odimayo) is loyal party member, so whatever the party decides, we will abide,” he stated.