Ahead of the October 10 governorship election in Ondo State, Governor Rotimi Akeredolu, who is also the candidate of the All Progressives Congress, has said the exercise would be a replay of what happened in the 2016 election, which he won.
Akeredolu said that even though he would be facing Mr Eyitayo Jegede, candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, in an election for the second time, he would defeat him again.
He spoke at the National secretariat of the APC shortly after appearing before the Ondo State Governorship Appeal Committee of the party, noting that not even the defection of his deputy, Agboola Ajayi, to the PDP would stop his re-election.
While advising Ajayi to remain in the PDP with Jegede rather than jumping ship again, Akeredolu said he made a great mistake by picking him as his deputy.
He said, "We thought we could accommodate him (Ajayi) at the APC but since he returned to where he truly belonged, it is all well and good.
“From what I have been told, he has lost the ticket and I pray he won’t jump to another place but if he does, all well and good.
"However, for his own sake and as a big brother, I will advise him to stay with Jegede, support him very well.
"He has made a case that he helped me to win, let him help him to win and we will confirm that he is popular. What I know is that he is of no importance, he has no hold on any local government, I can assure you that will come during the election.
"I will defeat him in his local government and he will never recover from it. He is of no influence anywhere and we picked him because we felt we have someone from PDP coming to join us. We picked him to join us but he feels and tells people that he is grass-rooted.
"Let me advise him again to stay with Jegede and let us see what happens. Jegede is my friend. We are colleagues and both members of the inner bar,
"I don’t have anything against him and I just pray that our campaign should be issue-based without violence and I know that he knows that it will not be easy for him.
"Yes, it may not be easy for me to win, but by His Grace, I am going to win. I can assure that as it was in the beginning, so it shall be now and forevermore. We will win this election by the grace of God.”