By Dapo Akinrefon
Members of the All Progressives Congress, APC, from Somolu Local Government Area of Lagos, on Saturday, staged a peaceful protest at the party’s Secretariat on Acme Road, urging the party leadership to address what they termed “the illegal and unjustified cancellation APC primaries in Somolu LGA.”
In a protest letter addressed to the state chairman of the party, Mr Tunde Balogun and Dr Obafemi Hamzat, Head of Local Government Election Committee of the APC, Somolu APC members, alleged that the “illegal and unlawful cancellation of the primaries” in the local government came as a rude shock.
The letter reads: “It is on record today that there was no news of violence in any of the eight wards in Somolu LGA.
“Our insistence that the council Secretariat should not be used for distribution and collation of the primaries materials and results that had been previously diverted and hijacked by the council chairman, (an aspirant in the primaries) in connivance with the party’s LGA Chairman, Femi Taiwo, but rather the Secretariat of the APC on 172 Ikorodu Road, Somolu, should be used because it would be neutral ground and would give zero advantage to all interests, did not go down well with him.
“Our fears and suspicion of foul play by the Council Chairman were confirmed when some of the ballot boxes that were meant for the primaries were later found to have been hidden in a corner in the Council Secretariat and were retrieved in the presence of the Area Commander and his team.
“The Council Chairman, Mr Abdu Hamed Salawu categorically stated that if the local government secretariat is not used for the distribution and collation of materials and results, the election will be cancelled. The returning officer for the primaries publicly admitted that the result sheets for the Chairmanship primaries were not included in the materials given to them from the state Secretariat.”
The protesters alleged that true to the words of the Council Chairman, the scheduled primary election for Somolu LGA was cancelled despite the fact that there was no record of violence.
They demanded to know whether Salawu is greater than the party wherein he can frustrate the right of the people to vote in the existing peaceful atmosphere in Somolu to decide their choice for the next Chairman of the LGA.
They, however, urged the party leadership to reschedule the Chairmanship and Councillorship primaries in the LGA with adequate security provided in all eight wards.
The protest letter was signed by 20 members of the party in the LGA.