ZLP, Ondo dep gov decry refusal to use public space for campaign
• Says N11m rent hike meant to gag opposition
• Ondo govt denies allegation
Ondo State Deputy Governor and candidate of Zenith Labour Party (ZLP), Agboola Ajayi, has decried the spate of intolerance meted to opposition parties ahead of October 10, 2020 governorship election in the state.
Ajayi alleged that his estranged boss and candidate of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), Governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, was using power of incumbency against opposition parties in the state.
He lamented that the state government refused him use of the public space to kick-off his campaign rally in Akure by arbitrarily hiking the price of the venue from N5 million to N11 million.
In a statement made available to journalists in Akure, yesterday, the Media Adviser to the Deputy Governor, Mr. Allen Sowore, said: “Let it be known that Zenith Labour Party (ZLP) applied for the use of MKO Abiola Democracy Park in Akure to kick off its campaign rally.
“After the successful completion of all due process, the agency responsible, acting on the instruction of Ondo State governor, deliberately hiked the price from the original N5 million, which the venue was given out to Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) for its own rally on Saturday, September 12, 2020.”
He, therefore, appealed to elder statesmen, religious leaders and other stakeholders to advise the governor to “toe the path of honour and desist from undemocratic and perfidious acts.”
MEANWHILE, the Special Adviser to the Governor on Transport Matters, Mr. Tobi Ogunleye, who is in charge of such public utility, denied the claims by the opposition party.
He said: “The allegation started on the premise of lies because the issue of N11 million did not in anywhere arise. That is number one lie; please ask them to give you the authentic story.
“Even the issue of negotiation is not within my purview. So, they should not shift this lie to me; I take exception to blackmail.”
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