Details of Saturday’s meeting between Governor Abiola Ajimobi of Oyo State and over fifteen gubernatorial aspirants on the platform of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) have emerged.
Recall, that the governor had last Wednesday promised to meet the aspirants and find way of prevailing on some of them to step down.
But many were surprised that the governor asked the aspirants to agree and deliberate on the type of primary election they will use to pick the candidate of the party.
Ajimobi, while addressing journalists at the governor’s lodge, venue of the meeting, said he specifically decided to allow the aspirants choose the best method for themselves in order to correct the insinuation that he was planning to impose a candidate on the people and the party members.
Speaking on the how the gubernatorial candidate would emerge, Ajimobi added that the aspirants after they had agreed on the method to use will also issue a communique which will be made public for the people to see that they were the ones directing their own affairs and not him.
He said that each aspirant will be allowed to sign the communiqué so as to prove that they have sense of belonging and were part of the decision taken.
Ajimobi, who was flanked with the state Chairman of the party, Chief Akin Oke, said he preferred indirect primary in order to save time, resources and energy.
The Governor, however, said it was left for the aspirants to decide among themselves on whether to use direct or indirect primary.
He added that if the aspirants agreed to use indirect primary, each of the aspirants will be given an opportunity to pick certain number of delegates (on equal basis) who will vote for the candidate of their choice.
He maintained that the aspirant with the highest number of votes in the election to be conducted at a designated venue among the delegates nominated by the aspirants themselves will be the candidate of the party in 2019.
Noting that at the end of the meeting, the aspirants would sign the communiqué and make it public. This, he said will put an end to speculations that he intends to impose candidate on the people.
He said, “The meeting will continue tomorrow, the aspirants will go and come back tomorrow and conclude the meeting. They will agree among themselves and decide on what method they will use.
“They should go home and access themselves and come back tomorrow, they will issue a communiqué which they will all sign”.
Among the aspirants present at the meeting are former governor of the state, Chief Adebayo Alao-Akala, Mr. Joseph Tegbe, Dr. Olusola Ayandele, Mr. Olalekan Alli, Mr. Soji Eniade, Mr. Kehinde Olaosebikan and Mr. Isacc Omodewu.
Others are Senator Abdulfatai Buhari, Dr. Azeez Adeduntan, Mr. Ayodeji Kareem, Mr. Kolawole Asanike and Mr. Akeem Agbaje.
Though, the Minister of Communications, Barrister Adebayo Shittu was absent, our correspondent, however, observed that Barrister Niyi Akintola, Mr. Bayo Adelabu, Dr. Owolabi Babalola and Professor Soji Adejumo were also at the meeting.(dpa)