By Musa Adamu
A faction of All Progressive Congress (APC) in Ondo state has rejected the alleged moves by the caretaker committee of the party led by Governor Mai Mala Buni, to adopt an indirect primary mode to elect the governorship candidate for the party.
Addressing journalists yesterday at the APC national headquarters, chairman of the faction, Henry Olu Olatuja, cautioned that the various governorship aspirants would have no other option than to challenge the decision in court, which he warned would create more instability in the party ahead of the governorship polls.
Olatuja said they came to the APC headquarters to brief journalists, having done so in Akure, so that the party interim leadership does not claim ignorant of the development, adding that it is important to consider the mode of primary to be adopted considering the pending litigation on the legality or otherwise of the process that produced the two executives.
According to him, if the party insists on indirect primary election, it is clear that individual aspirants would take decisions according to their conscience, but warned that about ten of the aspirants have concluded plans to approach the court to seek redress.
While trying to justify the authenticity of his faction of APC in Ondo, he said “It should be noted however, that as at today, 12 aspirants have collected their Expression of Interest and Nomination Forms and of which nine to ten aspirants out 12 acknowledged our leadership and are working directly with us as the authentic APC Executive in Ondo State.
“It is also important to note that five (5) of these aspirants came from Owo local government area where the incumbent Governor hailed from. His moving round to influence the disqualification of his major challengers is uncovered and screening committee should note this.
“It is therefore unthinkable and unspeakable that the list of party members submitted to assist the national committee coming to conduct the gubernatorial party primary election at various ward and local government was unilaterally compiled and submitted by Mr. Ade Adetimehin led Executives / Governor’s group without the input of our Executives Committee / other aspirants at all levels. We demand that the list in contention should be discountenance in the spirit of equity, fairness and Justices”, he said.
To this end, the faction warned the governors of Kaduna, Nasir El’Rufai, Ekiti, Kayode Fayemi, and Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi, to stop facilitating undemocratic principles in the state chapter of the party, saying they are the governors pushing for indirect primaries to ensure that the incumbent governor is returned.
“At this juncture, we need to call the attention of National Leaders of our party to call the Governor of Ekiti State, John Kayode Fayemi, Rotimi Amaechi, and Governor of Kaduna state, Nasir El’Rufai, to order to avoid disgrace and embarrassment that may arise from abuse of his office as Chairman Nigeria Governors Forum.
“He and his cohort should desist from facilitating undemocratic process, while try to impose the incumbent Governor Arakunrin Rotimi Odunayo Akeredolu on the APC by pushing for an indirect primary model which is grossly inequitable and inimical to the success of our party in general election coming up on the 10th October 2020.
“He should note that Ondo State is not an appendage of Ekiti State and such he should stop meddling with the political affair of Ondo State.”