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More on presidential Primaries: We’re Still Consulting, ANPP

Interview with the National Publicity Secretary of the All Nigerian Peoples’ Party (ANPP), Chief Emma Eneukwu

Vanguard: What voting method is the ANPP going to use to pick its  2011 Presidential bearer?

ANPP: We have not agreed on the mode of adopting who will be Presidential aspirant.

We are still consulting over it. Right now I am in Bauchi. The NEC is going to meet very soon, and come up with it.

Vanguard: Are  you talking about this week, or next week?

ANPP: Very, soon. Next week? … I am not sure. But very soon we would make that known. Thank you

Delegates’ Votes Will Count,  Babatope, Jemibewon
Chief Ebenezer Babatope, Former Minister of Transport and Member, PDP BoT, NEC. “Delegates will vote, there will be a level playing ground for all the delegates to express themselves and if the party manipulates the process, it will go for it.”

General David Jemibewon- “I don’t want to deal with names. It is only in rare occasions that you have one party system except if someone is returned unopposed. At all times, delegates will have the opportunity to vote for who they want, just like what happened in Jos in 1999, there were many aspirants like Obasanjo, Asiodu, Ekwueme, late Rimi, among others, yet delegates voted for the person they wanted. Do you see a possibility where someone will say you must all vote for one person?

“In the north, there are nineteen states, do you think it is possible, it is not possible even in one’s family, not at all, it is possible for your wife not to vote for you. A father and a  son can contest against each other, it happened in the case of S.G Ikoku. Even in a state where a governor is seen to be very powerful, can he tell all the people to vote for one person, he can say it, but can he confer that it happens, even in your state, Edo, is it possible for your governor to achieve that (Laughter  from both sides). I don’t think it is possible, delegates will vote especially in the north”.

Primaries are subject to Electoral Act — Lai Mohammed, ACN

NATIONAL Publicity Secretary of the Action Congress of     Nigeria, ACN, speaks on the needfulness of delegate pareticipation in any party congress. Excerpts:

Is it true that your party, the ACN and APGA are planning to field the former EFCC boss, Mallam Nuhu Ribadu as their presidential flagbearer?
There is a long time between now and the elections, and alliance and mergers can still be struck. As of today, I’m not aware that APGA and ACN have agreed to field a common candidate in the person of Nuhu Ribadu. What I know is that Nuhu Ribadu, like many other people have indicated his willingness to run on the platform of ACN. There will be primaries where candidates will emerge, I do not see our primaries taking place before December 2010. So, it’s a long time between now for a candidate to emerge.

There have been a lot of horse trading in many of the active political parties. Many of the presidential aspirants are doing their best to ensure that they emerge as the consensus candidate for each party. Now if this is allowed to scale through, what will be the roles of delegates who are expected to vote during the primaries be?

Currently in the ACN, we’ve embarked on a nation wide registration exercise, which will end hopefully in the first week of December. Then, our time table for congresses and primaries are already in the offing. Again, we have to wait for the amendment that is being undertaken by the National Assembly to even know whether primaries will be direct or indirect. So, you cannot jump the gun now by saying delegates will emerge by primaries or not. If the law says, all elections shall be by primaries, you have to amend the constitution of your party to that effect. So, I can talk for my own political party that it is the national delegates that will vote for the emergence of our presidential candidate. The constitution of a party is subject to the provisions made by INEC.

So, let us wait for the outcome of the amendment. Delegates or no delegates will be determined by the new provisions of the Electoral Act. If the Electoral Act says every convention should be by direct elections, then we don’t have a choice. So, we have to wait.


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