Rotimi Akeredolu, (born 21 July 1956) the Governor of Ondo state and a lawyer, Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN) who became president of the Nigerian Bar Association in 2008. Akeredolu was also a Managing Partner at the Law Firm of Olujinmi & Akeredolu, a Law Firm he co-founded with Chief Akin Olujinmi, a former Attorney General and Minister for Justice in Nigeria.
Akeredolu was appointed Attorney General of Ondo State from 1997–1999. He was Chairman of the Legal Aid Council (2005–2006). In November 2009 he faced allegations of corruption when the Bar Association’s Third Vice-President, Welfare Secretary and Assistant Financial Secretary circulated a petition entitled “Complaints against your fraudulent manifestations, violation of the NBA”. Subsequently, the allegations against him were reviewed and dropped by the National Executive council of the Nigerian Bar Association.
In a lecture in December 2009, Akeredolu said no amount of electoral reform or judicial system could give Nigeria free and fair elections, if Nigerians themselves refused to take practical steps to ensure that their votes count. Later that month he stated that Umaru Yar’Adua, the President of Nigeria should have handed over to Vice-President Goodluck Jonathan in an acting capacity during his illness, a statement that was backed up by the Nigerian Bar Association who said he was authorised to speak on their behalf.
In 2012, the Nigerian Bar Association named its new secretariat in Abuja after him with its president citing the reason being the need for “generational identification and recognition of those who had contributed immensely to the development of the association. Everything in the NBA is usually highly politicised. The sheer courage of Akeredolu to go through the rigour is a testimony to his selfless service.
On Sunday, 27 November 2016, Akeredolu was announced by the Independent National Electoral Commission as the winner of the Ondo State Governorship Election. He amassed 244, 842 votes in the election while Mr. Jegede with 150, 380 votes and Mr. Oke with 126, 889 votes . According to Prof. Ganiyu Ambali, INEC Returning Officer, Akeredolu defeated two major opponents, Eyitayo Jegede of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) and Olusola Oke of the Alliance for Democracy (AD), to clinch victory. He was sworn in as the governor of Ondo State on 24 February 2017 in Akure, the Ondo State Capital.
Presently, as the incumbent governor, Akeredolu is seeking re-election. it was reported recently that due to in house crisis, Akeredolu paid a visit to President Muhammadu Buhari to lobby for second term ticket ahead of the October 10, 2020 governorship election in Ondo State, political fortune may likely smile on him to clinch the ticket of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) which is being eyed by many other aspirants, While other aspirants within the APC and other opposition parties are saying no to the incumbent governor, his loyalists are optimistic that he would surmount all political hurdles to win victory.
Besides, the so-called ‘Unity Forum’, a group within the APC that consists of arch political adversaries to Akeredolu, according to views of citizens, has failed the good people of Ondo State in their bid to present a credible, reliable and trustworthy candidate that will confront Akeredolu at the poll and win hands down.
It became more dramatic on 14th of last month, the Unity Forum announced Olusola Oke as its candidate to face the incumbent governor, Akeredolu for the party’s governorship primary in the state.