There are indications that the incumbent governor of Ondo State, Olusegun Mimiko, may move with his supporters to the camp of the candidate of the Alliance for Democracy, AD, Olusola Oke, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria, SAN.
Impeccable sources disclosed to OrijoReporter that this decision was taken should Eyitayo Jegede, SAN, do not scale through in the lingering legal battle over who feature as the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, in the Saturday election.
Weighing the pros and cons, Mimiko, a prominent figure in the battle to return the former president Goodluck Jonathan, in the protracted contest that led to the victory of the All Progressives Party, APC, was said to have opted for Olusola Oke, of the AD, for a safe landing.
Series of comments have trailed the reception of President Buhari by Mimiko to Akure, over the weekend, as many saw it as a move towards pitching tent with the APC candidate, Rotimi Akeredolu, in the contest.
But Mimiko, today in Abuja, said despite the controversy surrounding who flies the flag of the PDP in his state governorship election holding on Saturday, he was not contemplating joining the APC.
He said the courtesy he extended to President Muhammadu Buhari when he led party members to a rally in the state on Saturday was done because of his position as the president and had nothing to do with the party he belongs to.
Mimiko spoke with State House correspondents shortly after meeting with Buhari for the second time inside the Presidential Villa, Abuja, since the crisis over the PDP candidate started.
He said the purpose of his two meetings with the President was to brief him on the security situation in his state ahead of the elections.
Hear him: “This is my second visit to the Villa since this crisis in our party started. Like I said, as the Chief Security Officer of my state, if there is any credible threat to security, I owe the responsibility to Nigerians to apprise Mr. President of what is going on in the state.
“Mr. President was in my state to campaign for his party. I extended to him the courtesy of receiving him at the airport and seeing him off as President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, not as APC (member).
“I understand that people have speculated that this means I am going to APC. There is nothing of such. I only extended him normal courtesy that protocols demand.
“As a governor and Chief Security Officer of the state, if the President is visiting, no matter the party he belongs to, it is only appropriate for me to extend the courtesy to him. That was what I did in Akure.
“And I have also come to brief him about the security situation in my state.”
When asked to comment on the ongoing crisis in the PDP, the governor said he was concentrating on the case in court. Mimiko said once his candidate, Eyitayo Jegede, wins at the court, the state would erupt in joy.