Candidates of the three main political parties in ongoing governorship election in Ondo State – Rotimi Akeredolu of the ruling All Progressive Congress (APC), Eyitayo Jegede of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), and Agboola Ajayi of the Zenith Labour Party (ZLP) – have cast their respective votes.
They expressed different feelings towards the conduct of the election.
Jegede Says I’ll Win
Candidate of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Eyitayo Jegede eventually voted at 11:08 am, 10 minutes after the card reader failed to read his fingerprint and that of his wife, Eno.
Clad in white native attire with a blue cap to match, he dropped his ballot paper with excitement using two fingers to express victory.
In an interview with reporters, Jegede said he would win the election despite pockets of violence in some areas in Akure and Owo.
He said he was yet to receive reports from remote communities in the state as at press time.
He commended voters for their large turnout and for conducting themselves peacefully so far in the exercise.
On reports of violence, Jegede alleged one of his supporters, Sodiq Obanoyen, was attacked at his polling unit in Owo by thugs and some men clad in black dress, who he alleged were led by an unnamed commissioner.
Despite the incidents of violence, Jegede said he would win.
“Despite all of those incidents, we will win by the grace of God,” he said.
Akeredolu Expresses Satisfaction Over Turn Out, Conduct
Ondo State Governor and governorship candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Mr Rotimi Akeredolu, has expressed optimism that his party would emerge victorious at the end of the Saturday’s governorship election.
Akeredolu who stated this after casting his vote at Unit 6, ward 2, Ijebu-Owo in Owo, headquarters of Owo Local Government Area of the state at exactly 9.40 am, said he was sure of victory at the end of the exercise.
Akeredolu who expressed satisfaction with the turnout of voters and conduct of the exercise appealed to the electorate to monitor their votes in order to ensure that their votes count.
He said: “I’m sure my God will give me victory at the end of the day. I put my trust in God and I’m sure He won’t let me down. My confidence is not in any man but God.
“From all information I’ve received, the election is going on smoothly. We have just started and the selection has been peaceful so far.”
He called on his supporters to remain peaceful throughout the exercise and beyond.
Ajayi Alleges Security Compromise
The Deputy Governor and the candidate of the Zenith Labour Party (ZLP) in the Ondo State governorship election, Agboola Ajayi, has voted at his polling Unit 4, Ward 2, Ese-Odo Local Government.
Agboola, one of the major contenders for the governorship seat in Alagbaka Government House, voted at 10:36 am on Saturday.
It should be noted that the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has presented the names of 17 political parties on the ballot papers.
Asides the deputy Governor, the other two major contenders are Governor Rotimi Akeredolu of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) and Eyitayo Jegede of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
Agboola while speaking shortly after casting his vote, lauded the electorate for the massive turnout and the peaceful conduct at the polling unit.
“You can see the turnout is encouraging. And the election is peaceful.”
He, however, expressed regret over the security arrangement for the poll, alleging that security agencies colluded with the All Progressives Congress in supervising the intimidation of voters.