The protest in Ondo town over the substitution of the Peoples Democratic Party’s candidate has turned bloody with the death of a secondary school student who was reportedly hit by the tear gas canister, released by the police in dispersing the rioters in Ondo town. While the identity of the student remains unknown, the protest also continued in Akure, the Ondo state capital as rioters again trooped to the streets, protesting the decision of INEC. INEC had replaced Eyitayo Jegede’s name with Jimoh Ibrahim as it obeyed a ruling by Justice Okon Abang of an Abuja Federal High Court.
Meanwhile, the traditional ruler of Akure, The Deji of Akure, Oba Aladetoyinbo Aladelusi, has appealed to President Muhammadu Buhari to intervene in the Ondo PDP crisis arising from substitution of Eyitayo Jegede with Jimoh Ibrahim as governorship candidate by Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) according to court orders. Aladetoyinbo made the appeal while addressing aggrieved PDP members and the supporters, who again came out in their thousands at his Palace, in Akure.
He also enjoined INEC to be not be partisan. “The judiciary should also intervene and make sure that all parties get justice because we don’t want any injustice in Ondo State,” he said. Speaking on behalf of the protesters, PDP Chairman in the state, Engr Clement Faboyede, called on the president to prevail on INEC to look into the issue. “We don’t want Ondo State to be on fire because our state is peaceful. Some cabals in All Progressive Congress (APC) are using Jimoh Ibrahim against the candidacy of Jegede, Jimoh is not a PDP member but rather a card carrying member of Accord party,” he said.
Meanwhile, the Social Democratic Party (SDP) called on security agents in the state to be more pro-active in combating criminal activities as the governorship election draws near. In a statement by the state Publicity Secretary, Mr Remi Olayiwola, the party said that the protest that trailed the removal of Jegede’s name and its replacement with Jimoh Ibrahim had to do with the flag bearer of only one out of the 28 participating political parties in the election.
The SDP said: “The other day, it was the APC disturbing the people of the state, today, it is the PDP. These are political parties in government at various levels in the country. So, if there’s any violence during the forth coming governorship election, the two parties must be held responsible.” Also, the Alliance for Democracy (AD) condemned the acts of brigandage and blocking of roads by protesters were organized by government.