From Olanrewaju Lawal, Ilorin
Eleven governorship aspirants under the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), inKwara State have rejected alleged move by the State Chairman of the party, Chief Iyiola Akogun and Hajia Bola Shagaya, a business woman to impose Muhammed Dele Belgore(SAN) on the party as governorship candidate.
The eleven aspirants including ; Sen. Simoen Ajibola, Sen Sulieman Mokanjuola Ajadi, Senator Gbemisola Saraki, Hon John Dara, Alhaji Abdulhakeem Lawal, Prof Shuiab Oba Abdulraheem, Mr Kola Belgore, Engr. Sunday Babalola, Hon Bio Ibrahi, Alhaji Jani Ibrahim and Alhaji Abdullahi Sanusi stated on Tuesday during a press conference held at NUJ secretariat, Ilorin that the delegate election that supposed to have elected governorship candidate of the party was not held because of violence that erupted as a result of fake delegates that were allowed inside the hall.
The spokesman of the aspirants, Sen. Simeon Ajibola maintained that the election did not hold and accused the state Chairman of the party, Chief Iyiola Akogun, Belgore and Shagaya behind the botched primary.
“While it is worrisome and very disturbing that with the heavy presence of security agents the process began with several attempts to undermine it and subvert rules to pave way for rigging the primary election in favour of Dele Belgore.
“It is however necessary to state here that delegates from Ilorin West were not accredited due to discrepancies in the list of their delegates, the misunderstanding that emanated from the denial of these delegates was however managed up to the venue of voting proper but to the surprise of all the aspirants and delegates alike it was noticed that the number of delegates which was supposed to be 709 suddenly grew to 1,500.
“We observed that over 700 people arrived in several buses escorted by the police with delegates accreditation tags just as the process was about to begin. Determined that the process should continue, we thereafter agreed that LGA PDP Chairmen should identify who the authentic delegates are prior to voting by each LGA.
“We observed that over 700 persons with fake delegates tags arrived in several buses escorted by the police attached to the trio of the Minister of National planning, Dr Abubakar Suleiman, Bola Shagaya and Dele Belgore.”
Ajibola who insisted that the President, Dr Goodluck Jonathan, the National Chairman of the party did not know anything about the crisis said they would resist any attempt to impose candidate on them, stressing that what they want was level playing ground for all aspirants. They proposed December 10 and 11, 2014 for another governorship aspirant.