Jegede and Akeredolu
…Scores injured, campaign vehicles burnt
…Mobile policemen deployed to curtail crisis
By Dayo Johnson
LESS than 23 days to the governorship election in Ondo State, political thugs, yesterday, attacked the convoys of Governor Rotimi Akeredolu, the All Progressives Congress, APC, candidate, and his Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, counterpart, Eyitayo Jegede in Oba Akoko in Akoko South-West Local Council of the state.
Both candidates were in the town to campaign ahead of the October 10 election.
Media aides to both candidates traded blames in separate statements issued in Akure.
While Akeredolu said his convoy was attacked by Jegede’s supporters, the PDP candidate countered insisted that the governor’s thugs were the attackers.
Spokesperson of the Akeredolu/ Ayedatiwa campaign organisation, Richard Olabode, alleged that PDP thugs attacked the governor’s convoy in Oba- Akoko and set a campaign vehicle ablaze.
The statement read: “The Akeredolu/Aiyedatiwa Campaign Organisation condemns in strong terms the continued and unprovoked attacks on the All Progressives Congress by the opposition PDP in Ondo State.
“Just today (yesterday), hoodlums of the Governorship candidate of the PDP, Eyitayo Jegede (SAN), attacked the campaign convoy of Governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu (SAN), at Oba-Akoko in Akoko South-West Local Government Area of the state.
“ln their crass display of madness and thuggery, the hoodlums set ablaze the branded campaign vehicle donated to the Akeredolu/Aiyedatiwa Campaign Organisation by Ambassador Sola Iji.
“While we are shocked and saddened by this attack, we are not too surprised because the PDP has shown that it is not focusing on issues in its campaign for the election. They will rather deploy violence and falsehood to score cheap political points.
“We say this is despicable and we view it as a sign of desperation by opposition parties in the state, who can’t stand the popularity of the APC, as they have seen the handwriting of their imminent defeat in the coming election on the wall.
“This unfortunate act is not only condemnable, but also deserves serious reprimand. So, we call on security agencies to investigate this latest attack by the PDP against the APC and bring the perpetrators to justice. This must not be swept under the carpet as it portends a grave danger to the smooth conduct of the forthcoming governorship election in the state.’’
Attack on my convoy a clear attempt to assassinate me- Jegede
However, Jegede insisted that the APC thugs attacked him and destroyed 10 of his campaign vehicles. He urged the Inspector General of Police to probe the attack, adding we would now start to defend ourselves because Akeredolu is desperate.
Jegede said: “lf anything happens to me before and after this election our people should know who to hold responsible,’’ he said at a press conference, alleging that “the attack on my campaign train at Oba Akoko by suspected APC thugs was a clear attempt to terminate my life.”
According to him the firing of live bullets sporadically at my vehicles by the suspected political thugs confirmed insinuation that some elements want to murder me before the election day.