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Primaries : Oshiomhole, Obaseki head for showdown as Edo leans towards consensus

By Emmanuel Aziken, Samuel Oyadongha, Alemma-Ozioruva Aliu & Omezia Ajayi
A
BUJA—Ahead of a meeting between the national chairman of the All Progressives Congress, APC, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole and the party’s governors to resolve unsettled issues arising from the mode of selection of the party’s candidates, it emerged at the weekend that Oshiomhole could be heading for a public spat with his successor, Godwin Obaseki on the issue.

Oshiomhole and Obaseki

The Edo State chapter of the APC it emerged is pushing for a consensus arrangement against Oshiomhole’s injunction for the use of direct primaries for the selection exercise.

The Bayelsa State chapter of the party has, however, adopted the direct primary option as advanced by Oshiomhole.

Stakeholders in the Anambra State chapter have, however, opted for the consensus arrangement as canvassed by several other states.

Vanguard gathered yesterday that a meeting between the party’s governors many of whom have been opposed to the direct primary option and the party’s national leadership is slated to hold this week.

Meanwhile, it was learnt that leaders of the party in Edo State are to settle for consensus as they believed that it would be less rancorous and there is currently now comprehensive voters register to determine the actual number of registered voters in the state.

Contacted last night Special Assistant to the Governor on Media, Mr. Crusoe Osagie claimed ignorance of the method to be used.

Comrade Oshiomhole speaking through his media assistant, Mr. Simon Ebegbulem last night said that any state chapter adopting indirect or consensus must do so through a resolution reached by all major stakeholders.

“They should write a letter to the national secretariat on the issue and where there is a disagreement, the national secretariat will go and conduct direct primaries.”

A reliable source who is a leader of the party and a top government official confided in Vanguard yesterday that “It is going to be by consensus. How have we been doing it? If not by consensus, the other way is direct, now where is the register, who is a member of APC that will come and vote. So when you talk about direct, you must first have a comprehensive membership register. It is like conducing election in Nigeria and you will tell everybody to come and vote; will it work? You must start at a point. Lagos that is talking of direct primaries, they are doing registration now so they can have a register and say this is what we have. For direct primaries, you have a known registered number otherwise everybody can come and vote. Do you have the logistic to conduct a direct primaries in Edo State?”

“Some leaders of the party including aspirants have been angling for direct primaries as they say that is how popular and generally acceptable candidates would emerge.

Bayelsa APC align with Oshiomole, adopt direct primaries

The decision by the Bayelsa APC, was taken at a well attended State Executive Council (SEC) and stakeholders sessions presided over by the former Governor, Chief Timipre Sylva and the Minister of State for Agriculture and Rural Development, Senator Heineken Lokpobiri.

It was agreed at the meeting that the adoption of direct primaries would allow for cohesion and all inclusive participation.

Werinipre Seibarugu, a former Speaker of the state House of Assembly, moved the motion for the adoption of direct primaries and was  seconded by the former Chief of Staff of Bayelsa Government House, Chief Samuel Ogbuku.

Niger Opts for direct  primaries

The Niger State chapter of the party has, however, opted for the direct primary method in line with what it claimed as the directive of the party.

Governor Abubakar Sani-Bello who said that the adoption of direct primaries by the Niger State chapter of the APC was  in line with the national body in order to produce credible candidates as the 2019 general elections approaches also said “ it had to go with the people’s choice as large percentage of stakeholders in the state wanted direct primary election”.

The governor spoke when he received stakeholders from Shiroro and Magama Local Government Areas of the state.

According to him, “direct primaries will enable all aspirants test their popularity and eliminate any suspicious foul play.” Adding that “all aspirants will go through direct primaries in order to avoid disagreements to ensure transparency and unity in the party.”

Primaries: Anambra APC Stakeholders recommend Consensus

Statutory members of the Anambra State Caucus of APC our great party and elected state officers rose from a crucial consultative meeting last night recommending the consensus mode for choosing its 2019 candidates to elective positions.

 


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