The people of Ondo have began accreditation and voting to decide who become their governor for another four years following expiration of the tenure of the incumbent Governor Olusegun Mimiko.
Days preceding the election have been characterised by violence and drama especially in the ruling Peoples Demoratic Party, PDP in the state which has two factional candidates in person of Jimoh Ibrahim who was later sacked by the Appeal court on Wednesday and Eyitayo Jegded who is backed by the incumbent Governor.
Also, it will be recalled that a violent clash ensued in Owo on Thursday where a chieftain of the APC, Afolabi Olaposi was gunned down.
The APC, in a statement issued by its Publicity Secretary, Abayomi Adesanya, on Friday in Akure said that Olaposi was shot dead on his way home after attending a meeting of the party in preparation for the governorship election.
“The assailant also went to the house of Chief Jamiu Ekungba, an APC aspirant in the Sept. 3 Primary, and vandalised seven vehicles in his compound.
“Ekungba was not to at home during the attack,’’ the party had said in the statement.
Meanwhile, no fewer than 1,280,580 voters with Permanent Voter Cards would decide who the governor would be out of the 28 contestants in Saturday’s governorship election.
Although 1,659,186 voters were registered for the election, 378,606 did not turn up to collect their PVCs.
The police, however, said 26,000 personnel, three helicopters, 12 Armoured Personnel Carriers and 20 gunboats had been deployed.
The Inspector-General of Police, Mr Ibrahim Idris, said five officers would be at each polling unit during the election while three helicopters would be patrolling each of the senatorial district.
Idris added that three commissioners of police would be in the state for special operations during the election. The Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps also said 15, 000 personnel and 25 sniffer dogs would be deployed for the poll.
The major contestants are Mr Eyitayo Jegede of the PDP, Chief Rotimi Akeredolu of the APC, Dr Olu Agunloye of the Social Democratic Party and Olusola Oke of the Alliance for Democracy.
Others include the candidate of the Accord Party, Mr Oladare Amuda, Mr Yinka Orokoto of the Action Alliance, the candidate of the Allied Congress Party of Nigeria and Chief Adetuwo Ogunjumelo.
Also in the race are the candidate of the Citizens Popular Party, Mr Peter Fasua, the candidate of the Labour Party, Adeuti Stephen and the candidate of the Peoples Party of Nigeria, Mrs Temidola Olagbegi.