Secretary to the Senator Yele Omogunwa led 7-man screening committee of the Unity Forum of Ondo State chapter of All Progressives Congress, (APC), Professor Sola Ehindero has urged members of the party, as well as voting population in the state to ignore and disregard the rumour going round that a consensus aspirant has been named, and to be presented to the public in a report purported to be released by the screening committee.

Ehindero, who described such report as fake and not the true reflection of the over three weeks painstaking and diligent work of the committee, noted that the committee is yet to arrive at a conclusion on a consensus candidate to be presented before the forum.

His words: “The position of thing as we speak is that the Coronavirus pandemic has limited the functioning of the committee. I want to assume that at the appropriate time, we will communicate our decision to the public. The committee will meet to decide in a consensus candidate which was the mandate of the committee.

“Until then, any information about reaching a consensus should be ignored completely, regardless of the source in the interest of the collective integrity of those involved in the selection process.”

The retired professor of Obafemi Awolowo University, (OAU), Ile-Ife, Osun State revealed this in an interview with newsmen, on Sunday, stressing that at no time was the committee members engaged in voting exercise to elect a consensus aspirant, “it was because partly that, among the ten aspirants we interacted with, we are yet to come up with a consensus candidate.
I am using the word ‘consensus’ cautiously: meaning that, we all must agree on a consensus candidate. That was our mandate as a committee, a consensus candidate.

“What we did was just for each member to name his or her preferred aspirant among the ten contendants. For me, I named five aspirants I preferred who are technocrats. This has nothing to do with voting for anybody. So, at no time did the screening committee members vote for an aspirant to be elected as consensus candidate.

“We are also asked to involve democratic processes if the consensus fail. We are to involve a democratic process whereby, a consensus candidate will emerge at the end of the whole exercise. To me, that require that ever among the aspirants, they can come together and elect anyone among themselves as a consensus. But, that also failed. The committee was told that they (aspirants) couldn’t record success in the consensus arrangement as they referred back to committee. The committee then met and as at today, I can categorically tell you that we have not able to come up with a consensus candidate”.

The University Don frowned at the bias nature of a section of the screening committee who are making frantic effort to favour one of the aspirants as the consensus candidate, stressing that any report purportedly presented by the screening committee which does not emanate from the full house of the committee and not endorsed by him as the secretary of the committee, should be ignored and consider as fake.

Ehindero urged members of the Unity Forum and APC members across the state to exercise patience until the Coronavirus pandemic is over, adding that the committee will still come together to right every wrong steps, put everything done so far in proper and acceptable perspective and give the forum the best aspirant that will be able to face the incumbent, Governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu in the APC primary and win him with wide margin, then go ahead to win the general election on October 10, 2020.

He also advised the chairman of the Unity Forum, Alhaji Alli Olanusi to look for an avenue to as a matter of urgency, bring members of the forum together more strongly and united than before, because according him, “a large percentage of loyal and committed members now have divergence opinions about the genuniness and sincererity of purpose of the forum to give them the best candidate out of the ten aspirants that will be widely accepted by the electorate in the state.”

He further said: “We have to be very careful in selecting our aspirant. We are not to produce a candidate that can tackle or bet Akeredolu in the election alone, but a candidate that will transform the entire state to an eldorado and deliver in record time, the much anticipated devidends of democracy to all the people at every sections of the state.

“I want to believe that the incumbent governor is doing his best and that we are all looking for someone who can do it better. It is not a contest between Governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu and others, but a collective effort to look for someone who can properly articulate and manage the resources of the state to transform it to create jobs for our youth, pay salaries and provide for the needs of the people of the state,” Ehindero stated.

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