Two of the leading aspirants of All Progressives Congress (APC) in Osun State have pulled out of the contest to pick the party’s flagbearer in the coming governorship election in the state.
Secretary to the State Government (SSG), Moshood Adeoti, as well as the Chairman of Local Government Service Commission, Peter Babalola, announced their withdrawal shortly before the APC primary election started on Friday.
The SSG revealed his decision in a statement by the Director of Media and Publicity, Moshood Adeoti Campaign Organisation (MACO), Mr Kayode Agbaje, which was made available to reporters in Osogbo, the state capital.
He explained that he has resolved to abide by a resolution of the Osun West Senatorial District wing of the party, dissociating itself from the exercise.
Adeoti added that his withdrawal was based on the credibility of the primary which he described as “a skewed and jaundiced process already designed to favour an anointed aspirant.”
However, he informed his teeming supporters that he is still very much in the race to contest and win the governorship election.
Meanwhile, the APC primary election is taking place in the 332 wards across all the local government areas of the state.
The party’s national leadership had set up a committee to conduct a free and fair primary that would be accepted by party members in the state.
Zamfara State Governor, Abdul’Aziz Yari, is the chairman while the lawmaker representing Delta Central, Senator Ovie Omo-Agege, is one of the members of the committee.
With the withdrawal of the two aspirants, the Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives, Lasun Yusuff and Speaker of the Osun State House of Assembly, Dr Najeem Salam, as well as 13 others will battle for the APC ticket.
The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) had fixed September 22 to conduct the poll that would produce a successor for Mr Rauf Aregbesola who has been governor since November 2010.