There are indications that many members of the Ondo state cabinet are set to leave the cabinet of Governor Rotimi Akeredolu or dump the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) government in the state, Nigerian Tribune reports .
NAIJ.com gathered that a source within the Akeredolu led government said that at least 11 serving commissioners in the cabinet of the state government have concluded arrangements to either leave the cabinet to contest during the forthcoming general election or dump the party for the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the state.
Cabinet members that might leave to contest the next election include, Secretary to the State Government (SSG), Ifedayo Abegunde, Victor Olabimtan, commissioner for youth and sports Saka Yusuf, Sola Amodeni, Wumi Olatunji and commissioner for housing, Donald Ojogo.
Others include finance commissioner, Wale Akinterinwa, Gboyega Adefarati, agriculture, Timehin Adelegbe, commerce, Ismaila Olurimisi, culture and tourism, Donald Ojogo, housing, Rasheed Badmus, natural resources, Tobi Ogunleye, transport and Yemi Olowolabi, information.
It was gathered that most of the commissioners who are members of the state executive are planning to opt out of government because of the overbearing influence of the special advisers in their various ministry.
The source disclosed that the Secretary to the State Government (SSG) recently reignited his desire to contest for the senatorial ticket against the incumbent, Senator Tayo Alasoadura, who had earlier given the ticket, saying Abegunde decided to leave the cabinet because he has been sidelined in the government despite his contribution towards the 2016 governorship election.
The commissioner in charge of women's affairs, Wumi Olatunji, is willing to vacate her seat to contest for House of Representatives because she was said not to be in charge of the ministry but the ministry is being run and control by the special adviser, Mrs Titi Adeyemo.
Meanwhile, Adelegbe who is the Commerce Commissioner feels he should leave the government as his duties are being run by the Special Adviser on Investment, Boye Oyewumi, rendering Adelegbe redundant by the overbearing attitude of Oyewumi and the Special Adviser on Multi-Lateral Services, Bunmi Ademosun.
Ojogo, is said to be eyeing a seat in the House of Representatives He was said to be running away from the government because he is also not in charge of his ministry because the governor has his eyes and ears in his Special Adviser, Engr. Rahimi Aminu at Ojogo's ministry and Works ministry.
The Transport Commissioner, Tobi Ogunleye, was listed to be warming up to contest for the state House of Assembly seat, but may lose out as the governor, is interested in the return of the current Speaker of the State Assembly, Bamidele Oleyelogun to stabilise his government.
Yemi Olowolabi, the state Commissioner for information, has also shown interest in contesting for the house of Representatives seat for Idanre/Ifedore Federal constituency but he was said to be considering the influence of the party's chairman who hailed from the same town with him and eyeing the same seat with him.
The source said "Most of these people have been rendered useless and figurehead in their various ministry and the governor seems not bothered by them and I am confirming to you that some of these men might leave soon.
"The PDP in the state had been talking with many of these commissioners and make overtures to them and if this government remains this way, many of them might be on their way out of the government and APC in the state."
Segun Ajiboye, the Chief Press Secretary to the governor, however, said there was no iota of truth in the rumour and described it as an imagination of some detractors who are envious of the cordial relationship between governor Akeredolu and his cabinet members.
He said: "We are in the season of politics and some cabinet members have been showing interest in contesting one seat or the other. But I can confirm to you that nobody is ready and willing to defect or jump ship to any other party.
"The governor and the Commissioners work together as one big family to bring unprecedented development into the state and they are happy in carrying out their duties to the people of the state."
Ajiboye described the allegations of overbearing influence of some special advisers appointed by the governor over some commissioners in the state, as mere speculations.
NAIJ.com previously reported that the Rotimi Akeredolu-led administration in Ondo state has been accused by the state chapter of the Mega Party of Nigeria (MPN), of not making any significant impact since assuming office 16 months ago.
The accusation was leveled by the state chairman of the party, Biyi Poroye, during the first stakeholders meeting of the party on Friday, July 20 in Akure, Punch reports.
Poroye insisted that the Akeredolu government has not recorded any achievement since its inception.