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Ondo APC, stakeholders differ on gov primary guidelines

A group within the All Progressives Congress, the Ondo Vanguard for Good Governance, has accused the officials of the party of not following the guidelines of the APC ahead of the party’s primary coming up on Saturday.

Sixteen aspirants have been cleared to participate in the Ondo APC governorship primary scheduled for Saturday, April 20.

The coordinator of the group, Mr Tade Ojo, in a statement on Tuesday, alleged that the delegate congress, which was scheduled to hold on Monday, was not held by the party officials that were sent from the national secretariat of the party to conduct the exercise.

According to him, the delegate congress should precede the primary in line with the guidelines of the ruling party.

He declared that the national officers allegedly violated the party’s guidelines in a bid to rig the forthcoming primary in favour of Governor Lucky Aiyedatiwa.

Ojo said, “We have come to tell the entire people of Ondo State, the national leadership of the APC and all Nigerians that all the processes that ought to lead to a free, fair and credible primary election in Ondo State have been violated by the party officials sent by the APC to Ondo State.

“Members of the public are, hereby, put on notice that the APC is again treading the path of perversion and corruption of the electoral process, and it will have itself to blame if the hawks at work are allowed to have their way.”

According to Ojo, the APC guidelines stipulated that validation of party members, whose names are in the party register as of 2021, should have been held about a week ago or thereabouts, and ought to be preceded by delegates congress of the party.

He said, “It is worrisome that the delegate congress that ought to have been held on Monday, 15th of April, was not held in the 203 designated centres for the exercise. Members of the APC, who obtained forms and offered themselves for the exercise, were not allowed to participate because the delegate congress was never held.

“This undemocratic action heralded their plots to rig the primary election. Having realised that the governor is not popular among the APC members in Ondo State, the state governor and these agents of destabilisation have resolved to simply concoct the results of the primary election, and award arbitrary figures to the governor as the winner of the primary election,” Ojo claimed.

However, the Ondo State APC Publicity Secretary, Alex Kalejaiye, denied the allegation, saying the delegate congress held on Monday but was delayed following the late arrival of party officials from the national secretariat.

Kalejaiye said, “We had the delegate congress yesterday (Monday). Those from the national secretariat that were supposed to come on Sunday had their flight cancelled, so they were delayed.  They came yesterday and started the process but they must first meet with the committee that would coordinate the delegate congress.

“They finished the meeting with the committee and they also met the representatives of all the aspirants. So the exercise was not cancelled. We have also informed INEC, but they don’t want to start without letting the governorship aspirants know.”

On the allegation against the governor, the spokesperson for the Lucky Aiyedatiwa Campaign Organization, Kayode Fasua, said the accusers should direct their complaints to the APC national secretariat and not to the governor.

“The prerequisite for voting is the party membership card, which will be confirmed digitally. Thank God the attack is no longer on Aiyedatiwa by these lie manufacturers.  Let them challenge the party leadership over their grievances and I’m sure they will get satisfactory answers.”

 

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