Ondo Election Why is PDP protesting when it should be campaigning?

The PDP should be out there making a case for its candidate. But it's protesting instead

  • Published:
Protesters at INEC office in Ondo state play

Protesters at INEC office in Ondo state

(Punch)
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The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) should be wooing voters in a bid to win the Ondo governorship election for its candidate on November 26, 2016.

Instead, protesters from the party's support base have invaded the Akure office of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in a rage.

ALSO READ: Protesters invade INEC office [PHOTOS]

It's the clearest example of misplaced priorities since Goodluck Jonathan took to dancing; right after schoolboys were slain by Boko Haram terrorists.

It's five more days before the Ondo election--that's barely 120 hours before the South West State settles for its next Governor.

Chief Olusola Oke play Chief Olusola Oke (Punch)

 

Across the partisan aisle, Olusola Oke of the AD has ramped up his campaign; courting millennials and newly registered voters.

Rotimi Akeredolu of the APC had President Muhammadu Buhari and other party bigwigs stomp for him last weekend.

During the same weekend, PDP was calling for a postponement of the election because it doesn't like the look of its candidate--Jimoh Ibrahim.

Jimoh Ibrahim collects Ondo governorship form from factional PDP Chairman, Ali Modu Sheriff play Jimoh Ibrahim, Sheriff (LIB)

 

“We call on INEC to postpone the election pending the determination of the suit before the Supreme Court.

“We make this call against the backdrop of the fact that INEC is a party to the suit before the Court of Appeal and Supreme Court and is well aware of the steps taken by certain parties to the suit to frustrate the course of justice", railed Dayo Adeyeye, PDP spokesperson in Ondo State.

play APC supporters (Vanguard)

 

The party's preferred candidate for Ondo is Eyitayo Jegede.

But the courts have gone for Ibrahim instead.

Last week, a Special Panel of the Court of Appeal adjourned Jegede's case against Ibrahim's candidacy, indefinitely.

This followed a ruling from Justice Okon Abang recognising Ibrahim as the authentic PDP candidate for Ondo governorship election.

PDP is having none of it, however.

"How can people be deprived of the right to elect a candidate of their choice in a democracy? We will protest. Jegede is the authentic candidate of the party. He was selected at a primary which INEC monitored,” Tuyi Adekanmi, President of the Akure Youth Association, said during Monday's protest.

“It is not within the power of anybody claiming to be chairman of the State exco of a party to submit any other name as candidate. Many people are angry at being deprived of their choice of candidate. Many people are angry,” he added.

Gov Mimiko receiving President Muhammadu Buhari play Mimiko, Buhari (Punch Newspaper)

 

As usual, the courts have conspired to mess up what should be a seamless political process.

PDP faithful have every right to feel aggrieved and disillusioned.

But what will be the most pragmatic course of action? Allow your opponents court voters with days to go before the election, while you scream blue murder on the streets?

Allow the other 27 candidates do all the campaigning while you invade offices with stones and cudgels?

ALSO READ: Dear PDP, embrace Jimoh Ibrahim while it is day

PDP should take a chill pill, call its supporters to order, rally behind Ibrahim and continue the court processes after the election.

Who knows, the political party may well have its wish--Jegede is installed Governor if Ibrahim wins the election; should the courts so decide--post-election. There's plenty of precedence here.

But now is time to court voters. PDP is doing the right thing at the wrongest of times.

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