The Ondo State Deputy Governor, Agboola Ajayi, said on Sunday he played a pivotal role in the success of Governor Rotimi Akeredolu and the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the 2016 governorship election in the state.
Ajayi defected to the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) last month after his relationship with the governor deteriorated.
He was reacting to a statement credited to Akeredolu on his emergence as deputy governor.
The governor had said at a forum in Ese-Odo local government area of the state Saturday that he made a wrong choice as his deputy in 2016.
He said despite the criticism and attack from various quarters alleging that Ajayi was his cousin, he felt he made a wrong choice.
However in a statement titled: “Re: I wrongly chose Agoola Ajayi as deputy,” and issued by his media aide, Tope Okeowo, the deputy governor said such a statement from the governor could only come from a frustrated politician.
He said: “We understand the frustration of Governor Akeredolu over his inability to remove his deputy illegally through the instrumentality of the House of Assembly having heavily induced them with state fund to do so.
“Many injuries Governor Akeredolu caused himself cannot be blamed on his deputy, Agboola Ajayi, who he has sidelined for the past three and half years.
“It must be put on record that Akeredolu contested in 2012 governorship election and came a distant third in the election won by Dr. Olusegun Mimiko of Labour Party.
“It was the experience, weight and political capital Ajayi brought into the 2016 gubernatorial election that produced the current APC led government in the state.
“If there is any wrong choice, it is Governor Akeredolu who has refused to take all-wise counsel not only from his deputy but by senior citizens of Ondo State.”
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