President Muhammadu Buhari on Saturday in Akure, Ondo, lauded Ondo All Progressives Congress gubernatorial aspirants for their loyalty to the party and supporting the party’s candidate, Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, for the November 26th elections in the state.
Speaking at a meeting with the gubernatorial aspirants, APC elders in the state, and national officers of the party, President Buhari said the unity of the party was crucial for the outcome of next Saturday’s election.
“I am very pleased that those of you who lost the primaries are still very much in the party.
“That you lose elections doesn’t mean you should walk away, you keep on trying. I went to the Supreme Court three times in my bid to become the President of Nigeria.
“I like your high spirit and your commitment to the party and I hope your constituencies are taking note of that,’’ the President told the aspirants shortly before departing for the Democracy Park in Akure for the grand finale of the Ondo APC gubernatorial rally.
The President, who was accompanied to the meeting by the Senate President, Sen. Bukola Saraki, APC National Chairman, several APC Governors and Ministers, told the party faithfuls in Ondo State that he looked forward to a successful election next week.
In his remarks, the representative of the aspirants, Tunji Abayomi, assured the President that they have resolved to deliver Ondo to APC.
“No single aspirant left the party after the primaries. Those who left the party were not party members; they returned to where they belonged,’’ he said.
Also speaking, the Chairman of APC Elders Council, Ondo State, Sen. Olorunnimbe Farukanmi, said Akeredolu, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN) was eminently qualified to lead the state.
“We have fielded an experienced, informed, hardworking and capable legal practitioner to work with President Buhari to carry out massive industrial development, job creation, eradication of poverty and massive economic improvement in the nation,’’ he said.
Tinubu conspicuously absent
In a closely-related development, the embattled national leader of APC, Bola Tinubu, along with three governors APC states in the southwest did not attend the Ondo rally.
The states governors who were absent are those of Lagos, Oyo and Osun States. The reason for their absence could not be verified.
Meanwhile, the chairman of APC governors forum, Gov Rochas Okorocha, assured members of Ondo APC that the party candidate has the support of all APC governors.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that President Buhari, who later attended a mega rally ahead of the Nov. 26 governorship election, pleaded with the people of Ondo to vote for the APC candidate in the election.
The President also commended all the APC members and supporters for organising a peaceful party primaries in the state.