Ogun guber: Four APC aspirants petition Adamu, demand direct primary

APC denies endorsing Lawan as consensus candidate for 2023
APC

Four aggrieved governorship aspirants on the platform of the All Progressives Congress, APC, in Ogun State have warned that the process of electing the governorship candidate in the state will be fraught with malpractices except it is done through direct primary.

This is as they also called for an independent and impartial arbiter to superintend the direct primary elections in the state for transparency and fairness.

The aspirants who gave the warning are Owodunni Opayemi, Hon. Adekunle Akinlade, Modele Sarafa-Yusuf and Biyi Otegbeye.

In a petition addressed to the national chairman of the party, Senator Abdullahi Adamu, the aspirants alleged that there were ongoing manipulations ahead of the primary by the leadership of the party.

The governorship aspirants are also supported by 34 others in the party.

Dapo Abiodun is the incumbent and he is campaigning for a second term.

According to the aspirants, the process of obtaining delegate forms and screening for the various delegate positions were already being tampered with.

“It is however unfortunate that the party leadership in Ogun State has refused to issue delegate forms to a large number of our party members to date even after the presentation of evidence of payment from the approved designated banks,” the aspirants alleged.

The development, they complained, was to sideline perceived non-loyalists.

They said it was in the bid to ensure transparency in the process that they had demanded a direct mode of primary as allowed by Section 84 (2) of the Electoral Act 2022.

The petition reads in part:  “Mr Chairman Sir, we humbly refer to Section 84 (2) of the Electoral Act 2022 which makes provision for three possible modes of primaries – Direct, Indirect and Consensus in nominating flag bearers of our party for the 2023 elections.

“Indirect primary election requires the process of obtaining delegate forms and screening for the various delegate positions. It is however unfortunate that the party leadership in Ogun State has refused to issue delegate forms to a large number of our party members to date even after the presentation of evidence of payment from the approved designated banks.

“Kindly find some copies of the bank tellers attached as proof of payment. It is obvious that there can be no justification for this denial other than to sideline perceived non-loyalists of the power that be. This, Sir, is unconstitutional, unfair and undemocratic.

“In view of the foregoing, the fractured nature of the party in Ogun State, and because the disputed outcomes of the last Local Government elections conducted in the state; we are of the considered view that there can be no level playing field if the indirect primary mode is used for candidate selection. We, therefore, write to state our preference for the Direct Primary Mode in Ogun State for a free and credible primary election.

“The Chairman may wish to note that echoes of the disputed 2018 primaries are still being heard in our state and the division in the Ogun State chapter of the APC is yet to be healed. Party members across the divide are, therefore, desirous of having their real voices heard in this next election.

“We also wish to appeal to the Chairman to appoint an independent and impartial arbiter to superintend the Direct Primary Elections in Ogun State for transparency and fairness. Even as we await the party’s favorable consideration of these requests, we, however, promise to abide by the result of a free, fair and credible primary election in the state.”