INEC fire: “Stop flaunting ignorance” – Akeredolu slams PDP

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The Governor of Ondo State, Rotimi Akeredolu has said that the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) was displaying ignorance by linking the ruling APC to the recent fire at the Akure headquarters of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

Recall that the electoral body disclosed that 5,141 card readers meant for the October 10 gubernatorial election in Ondo were affected by the fire.

However, the commission said the incident would not affect its conduct of credible polls in the state.

In a statement on Sunday, the PDP linked the APC to the fire incident, saying that it was a sign that the ruling party was jittery over the rise of the opposition candidate, Eyitayo Jegede SAN.

“The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) asks Nigerians to hold the All Progressives Congress (APC) responsible for the burning of the head office of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in Akure, Ondo state.

“The party says that information available to it indicates that the heinous act was perpetrated by agents of the APC as part of plots by APC leaders in the state to destroy INEC sensitive equipment so as to frustrate the conduct of credible, free and fair governorship election in the state.

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“It is clear that the APC has been in extreme fear over the soaring popularity of the PDP governorship candidate, Eyitayo Jegede, across the state, for which the APC has resorted to violence and underhand tactics, particularly after realizing that there is no way its candidate, Governor Rotimi Akeredolu, who has failed the people can win in a transparent, free and fair election on October 10.

“Our party invites Nigerians to note that that the attack on the Ondo INEC office is came after, self-confessed APC militant and former APC in the state, Isaac Kekemeke, boasted that the APC will use violence to rig the October 10 election and that Governor Akeredolu was behind the violent political attacks rocking the state.

“Kekemeke had also boasted of APC’s plans to import armed thugs and militants to unleash mayhem in the state and disrupt a peaceful electoral process.

“It is therefore not by happenstance that the fire occurred in no other place than the facility where sensitive materials, such as card readers were stored, leading to the destruction of not less than 5141 card readers meant for the election,” the National Publicity Secretary of PDP, Kola Ologbondiyan stated on Sunday.

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Reacting through the Spokesperson of Akeredolu/Aiyedatiwa Campaign Organisation, Mr Olabode Richard Olatunde, the governor said his party and administration should be left out of PDP’s drama.

In a statement, the APC candidate said, “The Akeredolu/Aiyedatiwa Campaign Organisation (ACO) watched with utmost dismay, loads of falsehood peddled by leaders of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Ondo State, during the party’s governorship campaign flag-off in Akure on Saturday.

“While we remained unperturbed about what happened at the PDP scanty rally, we take exception to the unpopular road being taken by the PDP in its lame attempt to seek relevance among the people of the state who have rejected the PDP outrightly.

“Rather than base its campaign on issues that have bearing on the welfare of the good people of the Sunshine State, the PDP and its expired and paperweight politicians resorted to twisting the truth and wrongful accusations.

“The PDP and its cohorts accused the APC of foul play in the recent inferno that razed some sections of the office of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in the state.

“While we note that there is nothing wrong in calling on the Inspector-General of Police to investigate the cause of the fire, the attempt to drag the name of the APC in the unfortunate incident, is nothing but a show of ignorance and a bid by the PDP to stir sentiments for a lost cause.

“Even INEC, through the Resident Electoral Commission (REC) in the state and its national commissioner in charge of Information and Voter Education has debunked such claims, saying the cause of the fire is yet to be ascertained.

“Contrary to another falsehood by the PDP that the APC is not united, the party at the national and state levels is stronger and more united, as all chieftains have resolved to work for the victory of Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu and his running mate, Hon Lucky Aiyedatiwa.

“For the PDP, it’s a defeated expectation as the expected disharmony the PDP was waiting to reap in the APC after the party’s primary has become their nightmare.

“The governor’s track records in the areas of road construction, industrialisation, promotion of workers’ welfare and so on, have made the forthcoming election a lost contest for the PDP.

“The PDP attempt to hoodwink the people of the state with false accusations will only further expose their ineptitude among the highly intellectual and sophisticated people of Ondo State.

“The PDP at the rally also arrogantly claimed that the October 10 governorship election will be a repeat of the 2019 presidential election, which the party said it won.

“This amounts to a drowning man, that will clutch to any straw to stay afloat. Let us remind them that Governor Akeredolu was not in government when he beat Eyitayo Jegede in 2016, and with his track record in office, the coming election will be nothing, but a walkover for the APC.”

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