Ondo APC delegates reject zoning, form Sunshine Crusaders

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More than 1,000 delegates of the All Progressives Congress (APC) loyal to one of the leaders of the party in Ondo State, Hon. Bola Ilori, have rejected the plot by ‘some people’ to zone the governorship ticket for the November 12 election in the Sunshine State.
The delegates held a meeting at the weekend in Ondo town and in attendance were delegates from 12 local government areas across the three senatorial districts.
The APC delegates, while taking some far-reaching decisions, saluted the steadfastness of their party members across the state for their loyalty in the face of daunting challenges.
The meeting at the Bola Ilori Political Office, popularly called the Big House, on Ademulegun Road, Ondo, resolved to adopt the banner of SUNSHINE CRUSADERS as a rallying movement for pursuing the governorship election in the state.
A communique read by Mrs Lydia Adejoro, Woman Leader, Ose LGA in Ondo North Senatorial District, said the group restated their faith and commitment to the leadership role of Ilori in the state and resolved unequivocally to vote in accordance to the dictates and directions agreed by the Sunshine Crusaders in the election.
“It is our firm conviction that only an aspirant that has what it takes to challenge and defeat Dr Olusegun Mimiko’s candidate of the PDP at the general election will get the backing of this group for the APC ticket”.
The pro-Bola Ilori group affirmed its belief in free, fair and credible primaries as a vehicle for clinching the gubernatorial seat in the state.
The group warns that all forms of unfair tactics should be shunned by all aspirants.
“We shall be against any aspirant who goes about slandering or promoting violence against other aspirants. We say NO TO VIOLENCE”.
The political group passed a vote of confidence in the Executive of the party as presently constituted across the state and endorsed their usage as delegates for the gubernatorial primaries.
“We also like to use this opportunity to commend the new entrants into APC in Ondo State, which have shunned the call for new congresses to elect delegates for the gubernatorial primaries or full blown congress in the person of Rt. Hon Victor Olabintan, Chief Olusola Oke and Hon. Derin Adesida. We commend the listed aspirants who rather than fight for selfish interest to promote rancorous electoral processes have, through a joint statement, offered to abide by the existing party structure they met on ground.
“With due consideration for the temperament of our people, or even the chaos that will greet such unthinkable exercises at this critical time, and the consequential impact it will have on our party’s fragile unity in Ondo State, no genuine lover of the party can propose any form of open congress for now”.
The position was also supported by Senators Ajayi Borrofice and Ayo Akinyelure, who were personally in attendance at the meeting.
The two senators vehemently declared publicly that they do not support the expansion of the present delegate.
“We, therefore, endorse their stands and join them to say NO TO NEW DELEGATE ELECTION OR FULL BLOWN CONGRESS”
The Ondo APC group also took a swipe at an alleged rumour of the possibility of zoning the eligibility of aspirants to a particular senatorial district, by the national secretariat of the party.
“We call on the national leaders of our party to totally reject the call for zoning by some lazy politicians who are, forever, looking for unfair advantage”.
The group is of the opinion that apart from the fact that zoning is alien to APC constitution, zoning three months to the primaries will be inconsiderate, knowing that aspirants have expended millions of naira, time and energy, campaigning vigorously across the state for months now.
“We, as active participants and stakeholders in the party, gauging the current mood of the party, wish to alert whomever it may concern that any attempt to zone the aspirations of the gubernatorial hopefuls to any part of Ondo State at this point will lead to unmitigated crisis”.
Sen. Ayo Akinyelure (ALLOVER) appealed to the leadership at the national level to jettison the proposal, as it may be counterproductive to winning the next general election in the party.
“The interest of the party supersedes the interest of any aspirant, and since we are going to need the entire state to vote in the general election, we say let the entire state delegates decide who they want. They are representatives of the entire state members of the party.
“Whomever cannot convince just 3,000 delegates within the party about his popularity would certainly find it difficult convincing the over four million residents of Ondo State. WE SAY NO TO ZONING,” the group concluded.

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