Bamigbola Gbolagunte, Akure
Ondo State Deputy Governor, Agboola Ajayi, has formally dumped the All Progressives Congress (APC) and joined the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
The formal declaration, which was done at his home town of Kobiri in Ese-odo Local Government Area of the state, brought to an end speculations concerning his defection to the PDP.
There had been a frosty relationship between Ajayi and Governor Rotimi Akeredolu over his ambition to contest the governorship election as against the wish of Akeredolu who is also nursing a second term ambition.
Chief Press Secretary to the deputy governor, Babatope Okeowo, who confirmed that Ajayi had joined the PDP, however, dispelled rumours that the party National Working Committee has endorsed him as the candidate for the October governorship election.
He said those behind the rumours are agents of government trying to create enmities among PDP members.
“The deputy governor, who has just resigned his membership of the APC and picked the PDP membership card is aware that the PDP has not imposed candidate on the party in Ondo State and the party is also not interested in imposition of candidates for elections,” Okeowo said.
He said the deputy governor will go to the primary with other qualified PDP members, who have shown interest in the governorship ticket and appealed to members to be wary of those spreading wicked rumours that can lead to crisis in the party.
Meanwhile, Commissioner of Police, Bolaji Salami, has said the altercation between him and Ajayi is to ensure lawlessness is not promoted in the state.
He said he engaged Ajayi in discussion when he got wind of his (Ajayi) intention to vacate the Government House with official vehicles belonging to the state.
Salami said the command will not allow lawlessness and other acts against laid down rules.
While reacting to a video on the social media of his purported confrontation with the deputy governor, Salami said the video which has gone viral was a way of putting sentiment to what transpired between him and Ajayi.
He said the police, under his supervision, take decisive responsibility when performing their legitimate functions as prescribed by law.
Salami said he only came to the scene when his officers and men at the Government House could not broker peace between the governor aides and those of Ajayi over the number of cars the deputy governor would drive out at a time.
According to the police boss, his presence at the scene calm frayed nerves.
Regardless, PDP has said not even the police can stop an ‘eminent’ mass defection from the All Progressives Congress (APC) across the country into its fold.
The party, in a statement, said the alleged attack on Ajayi, by APC, using the police, had further spurred Nigerians to abandon the ruling party.
The opposition party said APC was unnerved because Nigerians were no longer ready to condone its antics.
The party spokesman, Kola Ologbondiyan said: “It is a natural national course for democrats in the APC, who have realised that the sinking party is completely irredeemable, to leave APC in droves with their supporters.
“It is imperative to state that this development is sparking jubilations in every nook and cranny of our country.”