The All Progressive Congress (APC) Gubernatorial candidate in Ondo state, Governor Rotimi Akeredolu has picked a lawmaker and representative of the state on the Board of Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), Hon. Lucky Aiyedatiwa as his running mate for the October 10 election.
His choice which beats the Tuesday 28th July INEC deadline dashed the hopes of at least ten other party leaders jostling for the position.
Those that showed interest according to findings include Chief Paul Akintelure, Hon. Lucky Aiyedatiwa, a former chairman of Federal Character Commission Hon. Abayomi Sheba, a former governorship aspirant in the 2016 election, Hon. Akinrinsola Odunayo, a former governorship aspirant in the just concluded primary, Hon. Jimi Odimayo, a former council chairman, Hon. Otito Atikase, Princess Oladuni Odu, a member of the state House of Assembly, Hon Abayomi Babatunde Akinruntan amongst others.
Three persons, Princess Odu, Chief Akintelure and Ayedatiwa were shortlisted last weekend but the inner caucus of the governor zero down on Lucky Ayedatiwa following the pressure from a close acquittance of the governor.
Akeredolu according to sources decided to go for one of traditional member of the party and not anyone with the antecedent of the People’s Democratic Party following his experience with his estranged deputy Hon. Agboola Ajayi.
Ajayi moved from PDP to the APC four years ago.
Sources, however, said that the name of Ayedatiwa may still be changed before the August 18 deadline for the substitution by INEC.
High wire politicking had characterized who should occupy the seat after the former deputy governor Hon Agboola Ajayi resigned from the party but refused to abdicate the seat.
It was reliably gathered that those interested in the position went as far as lobbying party national leaders across the country and even the wife of the governor, Betty Anyanwu Akeredolu to pit in a word for them.
Meanwhile, The Vanguard News reports that the All Progressive Congress in the state played a hide and seek game on the choice of Ayedatiwa.
Its spokesperson, Alex Kalejaiye said the party was still functioning on a suitable running mate for the October 10 governorship election.
Kalejaiye said the person being sought for must be a loyal party man that would not betray the party in the future.
Contacted, the information and Orientation commissioner Donald Ojogo pleaded for time for official confirmation but he didn’t get back to vanguard.
Ayedatiwa is a native of Obe-Nla, an oil-bearing community in Ilaje Local Government Area of Ondo State. He was born on the 12th day of January, 1965.