…Aspirants in a last-minute manoeuvre to stave off a disqualification
By Omeiza Ajayi
ABUJA: There is a brewing tension regarding reports of disqualification of several Kogi governorship aspirants of the ruling All Progressives Congress APC, with many of them holding different strategy-review meetings in Abuja on Monday to decide their immediate political future should the party hierarchy uphold their disqualification.
The committee report which was obtained by Vanguard shows that only four out of the 16 contestants were cleared by the committee among which is the incumbent Governor, Yahaya Bello, Engr. Abubakar Bashir, Mrs Ekele Aishat Blessing and a member of the House of Representatives, Hon. Hassan Abdullahi Baiwa.
Those who were disqualified were a former Chief of Naval Staff, Admiral Usman Oyibe Jibrin, Prof. Mohammed Seidu Onailo, Prince Mustapha Mona Audu, Hadiza Iyoma Ibrahim, Yahaya Odidi Audu, Sani Lulu Abdullahi, Gen. Patrick Ademu Akpa (retd), Engr. Danlami Umar Mohammed, Yakubu Mohammed, Babatunde Ayokunle Irukera, Rukkaya Ibrahim and Mohammed Abubakar Unekwu Audu.
The aspirants were disqualified based on sundry issues including not having Permanent Voter Cards PVCs, not being a financial member of the party, not being a member of the party for at least one year, age discrepancies, invalid nomination and not being a registered member of the APC at the ward level.
Earlier in the day, some supporters of the Director-General/Chief Executive Officer of the Federal Competition and Consumer Protection Commission FCCPC, Barr. Babatunde Irukera had taken to the social media to protest the disqualification of their principal, accusing the Sen. Hope Uzodinma APC Screening Committee of clearing three lackeys of Gov. Yahaya Bello to square up with him during the primaries on August 29.
At the national secretariat of the party, Prince Mustapha Mona Audu, one of the sons of late Prince Abubakar Audu, a former Governor of the state caused a mild scene when he took his verbal protest to party officials.
Some of the aspirants, Vanguard gathered are currently holding meetings with their supporters in Abuja to decide on their next line of action. Many of them had canvassed the disqualification of Gov. Bello on the grounds that he was discovered to have registered twice for a Permanent Voter Card PVC, saying he is liable to prosecuting by the Independent National Electoral Commission INEC.
The National Working Committee NWC of the party would, however, meet to deliberate on the committee’s report and decide whether to grant a waiver to any of the aspirants, especially those disqualified on the basis of having not been a member of the party for more than one year.