Panel overrules Dogara on Ondo poll

The Ondo State Governorship Screening Appeal Committee of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) yesterday overruled the decision of former Speaker of the House of Representatives, Mr. Yakubu Dogara, to exclude Mr. Godday Erewa from the primary election.

The committee headed by Dogara last Saturday disqualified Erewa from the race, citing alleged inconsistencies in some of the documents he submitted at the screening.

Erewa had filed an appeal before the appeal panel chaired by Senator Istifanus Dung, challenging his exclusion from the primaries, which was resolved in his favour.

Although Senator Dung declined to speak with reporters after the exercise held at the Abuja secretariat of the PDP, Erewa said it was the party’s officials that mis-spelled his middle name as “Otisewino” instead of Oritsewino while processing his nomination documents.

In a chat with reporters after the exercise, Erewa said members of the appeal were convinced when he tendered his certificates bearing the correct spellings of his first, middle and surnames.


He said: “The reason they gave was that there was an error in the spelling of my name, but there was no error. May be the way they were pronouncing the name in their own dialect is different from the way it was spelled.

“The name in the certificate that was not cleared is different from the name in my school certificate. So when they looked at it from my appeal, they had to clear me.”

According to him, since it was the party officials at the secretariat that committed the error, the appeal committee had no choice but to clear him.

However, the fate of another aspirant, Otunba Bamidele Akingboye, who was similarly disqualified by the Dogara committee, could not be ascertained at press time.

Akingboye, who also appeared before the committee, declined to speak with reporters after the exercise, as he walked briskly to a waiting car that drove him out of the party secretariat.

Neither the appeal committee Chairman Dung, nor any of the members was ready to speak on Akingboye’s fate.

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