From Mohammed Ibrahim, Kaduna
The Zonal leadership of All Progressives Congress (APC) in Kaduna Central Senatorial District expressed shocked over the national leadership of the party’s decision to clear Senator Shehu Sani as the only senatorial candidate to contest the party primaries in central zone of the state.
The Zonal Party leaders in Kaduna, yesterday, frowned at the exclusion of other aspirants from the zone in the list of aspirants cleared to contest the primaries by the national headquarters.
Aminu Jibo, Zonal Chairman, APC Kaduna Central Senatorial District, who made the position known in a statement signed by him, said it is undemocratic to prevent other party members from making a democratic choice from the vibrant list of aspirants who have put themselves forward in the state.
According to him, five members of the party purchased and submitted expression of interest and nomination forms to contest the Senate primaries in the zone.
He listed them as follows: Shamsudeen Shehu Giwa, Uba Sani, Mohammed Sani Saleh and Usman Ibrahim; and they were all not cleared.
Mr Jibo said Only one of the five aspirants Shehu Sani was cleared, saying this action is a naked effort to foist a candidate on their zone.
“We cannot accept this reckless act of impunity. How can Mohammed Sani Saleh, a retired general who until May 2015 was the APC Senator for the same Kaduna Central, suddenly be deemed unqualified to represent the same party?
“Uba Sani has been a loyal member of the APC, and served the Kaduna State Government as Special Adviser on Political Matters for almost four years. He was appointed Senior Special Assistant to the President on Public Affairs in 2006 and yet was not cleared.
“There is no basis for not clearing our aspirants to contest the primaries to select the APC’s candidate to represent Kaduna Central in the Senate.
“The principle of natural justice requires that someone that has not been cleared is informed of the reason(s) and given an opportunity to appeal. None of our aspirants was given the opportunity of a fair-hearing through the appeals process.
“Members of our zone view this action of unlawful exclusion as an affront to natural justice. It confirms what we previously dismissed as rumours to the effect that certain persons had been promised automatic tickets,”he said.
He explained further that the notion of automatic ticket contravenes the Constitution of the APC.
“The leaders of the APC denied nurturing any such plans to subvert the party’s constitution and reward the most flagrant acts of misconduct, indiscipline and disloyalty. Were we wrong to have believed their assurances?
“As members of the APC, we cannot be expected to condone conduct that violates party spirit and wantonly breaches the right of loyal members. Therefore, we call on the APC national leadership to immediately reverse this act of injustice in the interest of our party, its reputation and its integrity,” he said.