Governor Rotimi Akeredolu of Ondo state has denied endorsing Asiwaju Bola Tinubu for the 2023 presidential primary, stressing that, a southern presidency is the target.
In a press statement on Thursday by his spokesman, Richard Olatunde, the Ondo governor said the narrative that was circulated was false.
“Our attention has just been drawn to a statement widely circulated and credited to the Governor of Ondo State, Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, SAN, purportedly endorsing a particular aspirant under the platform of the All Progressives Congress (APC).
“The statement, largely laced with partisan interest and fluid narrative was not authored by Governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, SAN. The intention of the writer, though juvenile, was to drag the Governor into unnecessary declarations, despite public knowledge of his position as the Chairman of the Southern Governors’ Forum.
“Nevertheless, the governor has continued to reiterate the stance of his brother Governors in the Southern Nigeria Governor’ Forum on the need for the south to produce the next President of the country in the spirit of equity and fairness.
“In clear terms, the widely circulated statement never emanated from Governor Akeredolu. It was, obviously, driven by overzealous partisan interests calculated to exploit the political capital of the Governor for personal gains.
“We, however, urge members of the public, particularly, members of the APC and the party supporters to disregard the statement as it does not represent the collective decision of the Southern Governors’ Forum which Governor Akeredolu leads.
“Succinctly, Governor Akeredolu as a leader and stakeholder in the Southern Presidency agitation, is committed to the interest of the Southern Nigeria geo-political zone. He will not descend into an arena of partisanship to jeopardize the interest of the forum he leads.