A two-term lawmaker representing the Ondo Central Senatorial District, Senator Patrick Akinyelure, on Monday lost the bid to return to the hallowed chamber, losing to a legal practitioner, Ifedayo Adedipe.
Akinyelure polled 58 votes to come second ahead of a former Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Clement Faboyede who polled 57, while Adedipe scored 83 votes to emerge as the winner.
While speaking on his defeat, Akinyelure laid the blame for his defeat at the doorsteps of a political leader and former governor of the state, alleging that the delegates were directed to vote for his opponent.
However, Adedipe who hailed from Akure, and contested for an elective post for the first time expressed appreciation to the delegates for believing in him, with a promise not to disappoint if he wins the general election.
“I thank God for this victory. I thank my party men and women who voted for me. It has been peaceful and very free.
“It is the PDP that has won and not Ifedayo. It is the party that conducts a free and fair election. My fellow aspirants should see this as a vote for all of us.
“We will require all hands on deck. This primary is based on existing law. What the law says, is what they followed. If Buhari signed the amended Electoral Act, it will be used in the future elections and will not void this one.”
Before the exercise, the three contestants had agreed to work together and to also carry followers of the defeated aspirants along in the interest of the party.
They described one another as brothers and respected stakeholders in the party hence the need to confront the opposition’s candidates together during the main election.
Security operatives were on the ground at the venue of the primary while officials of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) monitored the whole exercise.