Ahead of today’s decision by the Independent National Electoral Commission ( INEC) about who will fly the flag of the factionalized Peoples Democratic Party ( PDP) in the November 26 governorship election in Ondo state, strong indications have emerged that Governor Olusegun Mimiko has opened talks with the governorship candidate of the All Progressives Congress ( APC), Mr Oluwarotimi Akeredolu (SAN).
This development is coming on the heels of the uncertainty surrounding the fates of both Mr Eyitayo Jegede of the Senator Ahmed Makarfi led faction and of the Senator Ali Modu Sheriff group, Mr Jimoh Ibrahim. Ibrahim had been declared as the authentic candidate of the PDP by Justice Okon Abang of the Federal High Court, Abuja on October 14 even as INEC was directed to effect same.
The order notwithstanding, the electoral umpire has insisted on waiting till today to make a final pronoucement as the list of candidates will be published.
But unsure of the fate of his former Attorney General, Mimiko was said to have put a call across to Akeredolu last week, seeking a possible alliance for the poll, a close aide of the governor disclosed to LEADERSHIP yesterday.
”We know the matter will go up to the level of the Supreme Court but before the issue will be resolved at that level, the election would have come and gone.
”There is no way Oga, that is Mimiko, can work for the Alliance For Democracy candidate, Olusola Oke. Rather than that, we are looking in the direction of Aketi because we were all together before we parted ways.
”The reason is important is that if Jimoh is picked, God forbid, there are some who think we should support the party and win for the party and later retrieve our mandate. But this is very dangerous because the personality of the man Jimoh is hard to sell to the people of the state. The question therefore is what if he does not win? That means we have all lost out.
”To avoid that, our plan B is to align with Aketi because he is one of us and remember he was on the governor’s legal team that retrieved our mandate in 2009. And to be precise, since Aketi is not a product of the Lagos mafia, we can expire this possibility and I think the governor has been interfacing with Aketi on this.