From Ayodele Samuel, Lagos
Over five hundred supporters of the former Minister of State for Defence and a PDP governorship aspirant in Lagos, Senator Musiliu Obanikoro, yesterday walked around Lagos metropolis protesting what they described as travesty and political manipulation that favoured the candidacy of Mr. Jimi Agbaje as the flag bearer of the party in next year’s governorship election in the state.
The disgruntled supporters carried placards with different inscriptions seeking the immediate intervention of President Goodluck Jonathan and the National Chairman of the party, Alhaji Adamu Muazu urging them to cancel what they described as ‘immoral’ primaries and fix a date for a rerun with electoral officers who are above board and upright.
The coordinator of the peaceful protest, Mr. Olayinka Sotade told newsmen that the PDP as the largest party in Africa should show good example by promoting internal democracy as against the manipulations and impositions orchestrated by the leader of the party , Chief Bode George.
He added that whoever that will emerge as the party’s flag bearer must earn it honourably and not through electoral malpractise that favoured an unpopular candidate who has no structure to deliver the state in the forthcoming election.
His words: “We are protesting against the electoral manipulation that happened on Monday supervised by Chief Bode George. We are loyal party members who are bitter over the outcome of the party’s primaries not because Obanikoro did not win but because the whole process was flawed and should not be allowed to stay. A lot of delegates were scared of the venue with the sporadic gunshots carried out by Jimi Agbaje’s men and that of Chief Bode George.
“Secondly, the process of accreditation was flawed as ward Chairmen were not allowed to identify delegates and worse still, the announced 806 voters mysteriously turned 863 votes.
Sotade added that they are also contesting the morality of Agbaje’s candidacy since no one had told them that he was given a waiver by the National Working Committee of the party.
They urged the President to intervene with outright cancellation of the sham and order a transparent rerun.