A governorship hopeful on the platform of Ondo State Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Eyitayo Jegede (SAN), has expressed confidence that he would take over the mantle of leadership from governor Olusegun Mimiko in the forthcoming elections.
The aspirant noted that the many challenges facing Nigeria at the moment needed people of his kind to put things right.
The aspirant, who is the immediate past Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, told newsmen in Lagos on Wednesday that Ondo needed a man like him to take the Sunshine State to the greater height.
He said: “I’ve been part of the Mimiko government from inception in 2009 and up till when I resigned in July and with all sense of decency, I was actively involved in the achievements of the government.
“I am in a better position to continue with our attainments in the health sector, education, agriculture, social services and many more, and even raise the bar if I’m elected.”
He assured the people that his focus will be to rev up the state’s economy.
“Dr. Mimiko has done so well in the areas of healthcare delivery, urban renewal and education. I will sustain that momentum and at the same time concentrate on revamping the economy of the state, without necessarily overburdening the people,” he added.
On the claims in some quarters that his ambition would disrupt the zoning arrangement among the three zones- North, Central and South in the state since he is from the same Central Senatorial Zone as the outgoing governor, he said zoning had never been a consideration for electing governors in the state.
He said: “Election in Ondo State is never won on the basis of zoning, but on merit. Argument about zoning is being planted and spread by small people who don’t believe in merit. It is an argument that is deceptive and should be discountenanced by those who want the best for the state. Competence, efficiency and integrity should be the requirements and those are what I am offering.”
Jegede, who hails from Akure, the state capital, said: “My governorship ambition is not an ethnic agenda, it is Ondo State agenda. The real voters don’t know zoning; it is a contraption of some politicians who are afraid of merit. I see myself basically as somebody from Ondo State, somebody interested to serve.
“The argument against me is that I come from the Central zone and that I am not a politician. But rather than be a minus, those are my strength because integrity and merit are going to count. I have these and I am bringing them on board in the interest of the generality of the entire people of Ondo State.”