The All Progressives Congress (APC) has ruled out an automatic ticket for Governor Lucky Aiyedatiwa ahead of the November 16, 2024 governorship poll in Ondo State.
APC national spokesman, Felix Morka, made this known on Channels Television’s Politics Today programme yesterday.
According to him, the ruling party is democratic and everyone who desires nomination must earn it.
When asked whether the APC would give Aiyedatiwa the right of first refusal ahead of the party’s primary for the November poll, Morka said, “We have not had that discussion but we are a democratic party, we are a progress party; we don’t give anything to people; people have to justify and earn it.
“And it is not to us they have to justify their suitability, their qualification, or criteria, it is to the people of the state who are our members, who would participate in the direct or indirect primary.”
“Whatever preference anyone may have, it is all subject to the democratic decision of the party members who will participate in our primaries.
“We don’t give free gifts in APC; we contest and we compete and we win whatever it is we can get in terms of representation,” he added.
Morka also said he can’t pre-empt whether the governorship ticket would be zoned in Ondo or not. “We are yet to engage on zoning. We will explain to the people if and when we do that,” he said.
Will Aiyedatiwa Contest 2024 Gov Poll? Aiyedatiwa, formerly Ondo deputy governor, was sworn in as the substantive governor of the South-West state on December 27, 2023, following the painful death of Governor Rotimi Akeredolu.
Considering the inconsolable and sober mood in the state caused by the death of Akeredolu, it might be too early for Aiyedatiwa to show interest in the 2024 governorship poll in the state but ambition is progressive.
Already, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has fixed the Ondo State Governorship Poll for November 16, 2024, barring last-minute changes.
Aiyedatiwa, who will complete Akeredolu’s second term by February 2025, is constitutionally permitted to run for office with his name on the ballot and remain the governor of the state if the electorate so decides.
However, the question on the lips of keen observers reading the political barometer in Ondo is: Will Aiyedatiwa run for office or silently bow out by February 2025? Can he win the hearts of gladiators in Akeredolu’s camp and get them to support him for possible electoral victory? Only time will tell.