Betty, the wife of the Ondo State governor, Rotimi Akeredolu, has withdrawn from the race to win the All Progressives Congress (APC) senatorial ticket for Imo East.
The Ondo first lady disclosed this in a statement on Sunday titled, ‘Notice of withdrawal from senatorial race’.
Betty had accused Imo Governor, Hope Uzodinma of allegedly imposing candidates in the federal legislative primary elections of the APC in the state.
In a trending video, the governor’s wife who was in deep emotion was seen expressing displeasure over the arrangement.
However, she said in her statement that she would support the candidate of the party who finally emerges as the winner.
The statement read, “I wish to declare my decision to withdraw from the Senatorial Primaries of Imo East Senatorial zone. This decision has become necessary following brazen irregularities, use of force and intimidation meted out on my person and supporters.
“I have received reliable information that arrangements have been concluded by some high authorities within the party to scheme the whole process in favour of a particular candidate. Delegates are being harassed and intimidated to comply with this directive.
“I believe in free and fair elections, equity and a level playing ground. The circumstances that have shrouded events preceding this primaries have proven to be far from these ideals which I hold so dearly. It is expedient therefore for me to withdraw from this race which I believe is also in the interest of the party in the state.
“I must, at this juncture, appreciate Ada Owere team, all my friends and supporters who stood by me during this period. Special thanks to the delegates who believed in me but were denied the opportunity to express their support.
“I sincerely apologise to all those who will be disappointed by this decision. Rest assured that your belief in me is greatly appreciated.
“Finally, let me affirm that I will continue to serve the good people of Imo East Senatorial zone and Imo state at large, contributing my quota to the development and fair and just society. “Politics should not be a do or die affair. I had earlier stated that if I did not emerge as the standard-bearer in a free and fair primary, I would throw my weight behind any of my brothers who emerged.
“All I asked for was a level playing ground where delegates would be allowed to express themselves without fear and intimidation. I sincerely hope that one day, we will get it right.”
In the viral video reported by SaharaReporters on Saturday, Betty said any attempt to impose a candidate on the people of Owerri Zone would be vehemently opposed.
She also called on the leadership of the party to reject any result emanating from the process as there was no transparent process.
The Ondo first lady said, “I am insisting that we must go by delegates election. I cannot waste time and resources campaigning only to be told that candidates would emerge by consensus.
“We must vote and if I lose gallantly, I will accept the result. Consensus my foot. If men agree to consensus, I won’t agree. “After spending my time and money, you are now telling me about consensus and all these while we have been campaigning and nobody talked about consensus.”
SaharaReporters earlier reported that policemen and other security operatives had chased out Akeredolu’s wife and her supporters from the APC secretariat where they were protesting.
Confusion had erupted when her supporters went berserk, insisting that they must be allowed to vote, but the police tried to control the crowd.
In the process, there was a stampede as journalists and delegates who had arrived for the exercise scampered to safety.
Akeredolu, who addressed journalists at the gate of the secretariat, said that it was an injustice to allow aspirants to campaign only to be told that the party had adopted consensus option.