By Jude Opara, Abuja
The All Progressives Congress (APC) on Sunday thanked the people of Ondo State for reelecting their candidate and incumbent governor of the state, Rotimi Akeredolu in the just conducted October 10 governorship election in the state.
In a statement signed by the Deputy National Publicity secretary, Yekini Nabena, the APC said the victory of Governor Akeredolu is a testament that the people of Ondo State are happy with his leadership which he added means that the state has voted for development and adequate security among others.
“As a Party, while we thank the Ondo electorate for voting for good governance, industrialization, security, empowerment and general welfare of the state, we will continue to advocate for and support safe, free and credible elections that guarantee that valid votes count and the people’s will prevail.”
The ruling party also congratulated President Muhammadu Buhari as well as leader of the Party and Governor Mai Mala Buni who is the Chairman of the Party’s Caretaker/Extra-Ordinary National Convention Planning Committee for rallying our supporters, members and leaders, particularly our governors in total support Akeredolu.
The statement further described the victory as a sign that the APC was doing well in its quest to reconcile all aggrieved members across the country.
“Governor Akeredolu’s reelection is indeed testament to the inclusiveness, genuine reconciliation and peace the Governor Mai Mala Buni-led APC Caretaker Committee has ensured among party ranks in Ondo State, other chapters and the Party in general.”
The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) had earlier Rotimi Akeredolu as winner of the keenly contested election.
Akeredolu, who had to dig deep to win polled a total of 292,830 votes ahead of his main challengers, Eyitayo Jegede, of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP)who scored 195,791 votes as well as his estranged deputy, Agboola Ajayi, candidate of the Zenith Labour Party (ZLP), who placed a distant third with 69,217 votes..
The INEC returning Officer for the election, Idowu Olayinka, said Akeredolu met all the conditions required to be declared the winner.
“I hereby declare Oluwarotimi Akeredolu of the APC winner of the election and he is returned elected,” he said
Olayinka said Akeredolu will be presented with his certificate at the INEC office in Akure, the state capital, of return on Tuesday.
End SARS: Listen to Nigerians, Saraki tells Buhari, Police
As the End SARS protests continue to rock parts of the country, former Senate President, Bukola Saraki, has advised President Muhammadu Buhari and Nigeria Police to listen to the protesters, warning of a looming danger if the matter was not cautiously handled.
Saraki who spoke on the issue on Sunday, said the country has been witnessing a well-organized and largely orderly youth protests, a clear manifestation of the frustration felt by the youthful citizens.
According to the former governor of Kwara State, what is currently going on is a clear demonstration that Nigerians are voicing their response to the increasingly harrowing scenes of random and unjustified harassment, intimidation, detention and extrajudicial killings by the SARS operatives.
Saraki further noted that the current situation is too important and far above individual interests.
He urged all those who can to stand up and speak out on the issues Nigerians collectively face.
The former lawmaker said in his opinion, #EndSarsNow, #EndPoliceBrutality is not one bit about politics.
He added that the protest is about the young people who are agitating and raising their voices demanding protection of their daily rights and liberties, to live, associate, and work, productively in peace in their own country.
He also decried the manner SARS arbitrarily arrest and harass youths simply because of their dressing, hairdo, and even possessions.
“There is a danger in the escalation of any protest movement, and #EndSARS is no different. Escalation happens when each hour that passes is an hour when we seem to have not listened to the protesters and taken their grievances seriously.”
Saraki said the initial response of the Inspector General of Police, Mohammed Adamu to #EndSARS, in which he gave various directives about the squad can be read as an admission that many things are wrong.
He equally stressed that in analyzing the atrocities of SARS, it is clear that its history has been trailed by institutional vandalism and emasculation of leadership in policing, the militarization of policing for regime security and impunity of security services and neglecting long-standing reforms designed to improve public confidence.
Saraki added that for leaders to continue to ignore the wishes of the people is never a good strategy in nation building.
The former senate president also paid tribute to the victims of Police excessive reaction to the #EndSARSProtest across the country, including the killing of Jimoh Isiaka in Ogbomo