A total of 743 delegates approved by the National Working Committee (NWC) of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) will today in Osogbo elect the party’s South-west zonal leaders.
The NWC has also released the list of members of the Election Committee and the Election Appeal Committee.
According to a statement containing the delegate list signed by the National Organising Secretary of the party, Col Austin Akobundu (rtd), Oyo State has a total of 171 delegates, while Ogun State has 114; Osun State, 130; Ekiti State, 115; and Lagos State, 101.
Akobundu named the Benue State governor, Dr. Samuel Ortom, as chairman of the election committee, while Senator Sandy Onoh, Ogun Otemabore and Ireruoke Edward will serve as members. Senator Samuel Anyanwu will serve as secretary.
The party also appointed an election appeal committee headed by Chief Okey Ezenwa who will serve as chairman, Mr. Roland Najomoh, secretary, while Clement Okaredir will serve as a member.
Following the supremacy battle between Oyo State Governor, Mr. Seyi Makinde, and a former governor of Ekiti State, Mr. Ayo Fayose, the venue for the election was changed from Ibadan to Osogbo to ensure fairness and avoid giving any advantage to either of the two leaders of the party in the region.
Both have been at loggerheads over the leadership of the party in the South-west, supporting opposing candidates.
While Makinde is said to be sponsoring Mr. Taofeek Arapaja, a former deputy governor of Oyo State, Fayose is said to be backing Mr. Eddy Olafeso, a former governorship aspirant in Ondo State and the immediate past chairman of the party in the zone.
The feud between Makinde and Fayose was responsible for the delay in the conduct of the party’s congress in the South-west zone.
The NWC had intervened severally to ensure a consensus candidate for the chairmanship position to no avail.
Meanwhile, Arapaja and Olafeso have been cleared to contest the party’s top post in the region. Also cleared are Mr. Rahman Olokaniron and Mr. Jenvo Bunni for the position of zonal secretary.
For the office of zonal treasurer, those cleared are Mr. Ogunje Samson and Mr. Ojo Michael, while the candidates for the zonal organising secretary are Mr. Amuwa Adegbenro and Mr. Faisu Adewele.
The candidates cleared for zonal publicity secretary are Mr. Olusanya Adefarari and Mr. Fadaka Ayodele, while Mr. Adewoyin Babatunde and Mr. Philip Okubode were cleared to contest for the position of zonal financial secretary.
Mr. Babatunde Samuel and Mr. Muniru Kukouye were cleared to contest for the office of zonal legal adviser, while those cleared for the zonal auditor are Mr. Dominic Adegbola, Mr. Balogun Ayuba and Mr. Adeolu Adewunmi.
For the office of zonal woman leader, Ms. Modinat Adedibu and Ms. Abimbola Balogun were cleared.