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Governor Lucky Ayedatiwa’s Victory And The Aspirants That Are More Catholic Than The Pope



By Akinjeji Friday Adeola

As the political landscape in Ondo state continues to evolve, with various actors vying for power and influence, it is essential to take stock of recent developments to gain insights into the future trajectory of the Ondo state political fate.

One such significant event was the recent APC primary elections, which saw the emergence of the Incumbent Governor Lucky Ayedatiwa as the party’s flagbearer for the forthcoming governorship elections in Ondo State.

Ayedatiwa’s victory has been the subject of much debate and speculation, with some suggesting that it was a foregone conclusion, while others contend that it was due to his superior political skills and grassroots support.

Regardless of one’s perspective on the matter, it is essential to recognize that Ayedatiwa’s victory is not only irreversible but also indicative of the power of the APC as a political entity and the importance of proper party machinery in Nigeria’s political system.

I guessed this was the singular fact why all the aspirants were lobbying for endorsement from Abuja and Lagos cabals to get hold of the “Party Machinery “before the primary election.

To illustrate this point, we need only to look at recent judicial precedents that have upheld the importance of political party supremacy in Nigeria’s political space. Mr. Akpabio vs. Mr. Udom Ekpoudom case is one such example, where the courts ruled that political parties have the right to determine their candidates and set aside the judgement of the Appeal court.

Similarly, the Lawan vs. Machina case reinforces this position, emphasizing the importance of internal party mechanisms in selecting candidates and decrying what the court referred to as “forum shopping.”

The supreme court has always been maintaining her position on Party Supremacy overtime despite the fact no two cases share same attributes.

For instance, the case between and Senator Hosea Ehinlawo and Olusola Oke (2008) (, ground 8 was explicit on the party supremacy in primary election.

I quote,GROUND EIGHT “ The lower court erred in law when it failed to take into account the full provisions of the 2nd respondents’ Constitution and electoral guidelines governing the nomination of candidates for election.”

NOTEE: “The Full Provision” PARTICULARS

The 2nd respondents’ electoral guidelines which both parties relied upon and referred to in the proceedings contain an overriding provision which is to the effect that the party has the final say on which candidate to nominate or present for election (Onuhoa v.Okafor).

Under this provision, the winner of the primaries is not automatically made the nominated candidate of the 2nd respondent.

Under the electoral guidelines and Constitution of the 2nd respondent, a person is not nominated until his name is submitted to the 3rd respondent by the 2nd respondent.

By relying on the fact that the 1st respondent won the primaries without more, the lower court clearly failed to appreciate that the winner of a primary election does not automatically become a sponsored/nominated candidate of the party.

The lower court thus usurped the function of the 2nd respondent by engaging itself in the resolution of an intra-party dispute and or controversy, a dispute which the trial court rightly disassociated itself from.

In light of these precedents, it is clear that His Excellency, Governor Ayedatiwa’s victory at the APC primary is not only legal but also a demonstration of the party’s capacity to navigate the political arena effectively.

It also reinforces the thesis that those who are waiting for the sleeping of crap are likely to spend years by the seaside.

In other words, individuals or groups who depend on legal loopholes or procedural tactics to achieve their political ends will ultimately fail, as the Nigerian judiciary is increasingly showing a willingness to prioritize political party mechanisms over individual interests.

It is also of interest to dissect the role of INEC in Party Primaries using the argument of Mike Igini, the immediate past Akwa Ibom state Resident Electoral Commissioner, on the emergence of Augustine Ekanem as APC candidate for Akwa Ibom North/West senatorial district and the positions of Courts.

(recall that INEC under Rec. Igini did not monitor second primary of 9 June 2022 that produced Akpabio).

In the trial court,” Mr Nwite also ordered INEC to publish Mr Akpabio’s name as APC senatorial candidate for Akwa Ibom North/West senatorial district in 2023, stating that the Commission acted illegally by refusing to accept and publish the former governor’s name when it was submitted to it by the APC as its candidate.” (party supremacy)

The Appeal court upturned this judgement, “The panel further ruled that Mr Akpabio, having contested the presidential primary of the APC, could not participate in the valid primary of the party held on 27 May 2022 and monitored by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), which produced Mr Ekpoudom as the candidate.”

The Supreme court, “the Supreme Court upturned the Court of Appeal’s decision, the court held that the lower court erred in law when it assumed jurisdiction in the internal matters of a political party.”

Thus, as Ondo gears up for another round of gubernatorial elections, the debacle surrounding the Ondo State primaries should serve as a wake-up call to all politicians across Nigeria.

It is a stark reminder that no amount of money can make an aspirant impose himself on the party. The events surrounding this primary serve as a poignant lesson, underscoring the detrimental impact of politicians who seek to tarnish the reputation of their party by exploiting the vulnerability of the youth through monetary enticements, the insidious practice of leveraging the economic hardships faced by the populace to further their own ambitions and take over party structure.

In conclusion, His Excellency, Governor Ayedatiwa’s victory at the APC primary is a reminder of the importance of political parties in Nigeria’s political terrain.

It is also a testament to the power of proper political machinery and the need for political actors to adapt to the changing times and demonstrate high sense of humility.

As Nigeria moves forward, it is imperative that those who seek to lead the country recognize the importance of collective decision in chosen party leader, work in harmony with members, and avoid relying solely on legal loopholes or technicalities to achieve selfish objectives.

Ultimately, the nation’s fate depends on the collective efforts of its political actors as democratic entity and their ability to navigate the complex realities of a rapidly changing world.


Akinjeji Friday Adeola
Former Secretary, NDYM. Ondo state.
Block D114, Post Graduate Hall, OAU. Ile-Ife

Disclaimer: This piece represents the opinion of the writer not that of Blaze Newz Nigeria

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