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19 Aspirants Screened Out Of APC Convention



Nineteen aspirants vying for various positions at the All Progressives Congress (APC) national convention have so far been disqualified by the screening panel.
This is just as the party’s appeal committee has received 18 petitions from aggrieved members.
LEADERSHIP Sunday also reports that apart from office of the national chairman and the national secretary, there are petitions against aspirants in other positions, including those of the national organising secretary and the national women leader.

Addressing newsmen yesterday during the panel’s sitting, chairman of the appeal committee and Imo State governor, Owelle Rochas Okorocha, said if his committee upholds the position of the screening committee on the 19 persons, it means they have been disqualified from contesting the election.
He said: “If there is anybody who has been screened and there is a petition against him, we have power to uphold his qualification or disqualify him based on the merits of the petition.
“As you can see, we have started receiving petitions and appeals. Right now, we have seven aspirants here. We have resolved to give everyone a fair hearing so that justice, equity and fairness will prevail so that we prevent crisis in the party. We are carefully selected Nigerians from all walks of life from different states that constitute the membership of this committee.

“We have two days to do this job and we will be submitting our report by Monday barring any other reason. We are here to work all day and all night and take our decision. The screening appeal is the final appeal in this case. After this appeal committee, the next appeal will be after election appeal, which will come after the convention. We are not unmindful of the fact that the convention committee will need time to start printing of ballot papers for the convention and so we will ensure that we complete this job on time.
“So far, we have about 18 petitions before us and we have 19 persons that did not make it at the screening level. These are the things we are looking at, to see the merit or otherwise of their claims. We are going to use the screening committee’s report as a major guide to whatwe are doing. As soon as we are through with this, we are going to make it known to the public those who have succeeded at the appeal committee level.”

On those who were petitioned against, he said, “Of course, we have petitions against all other positions except that of the national chairman and national secretary. However, there is a general petition as to whether members of the National Working Committee (NWC) can be judge in their own case, having supervised the congresses and now coming to present themselves for election. We are also looking at that.”
On whether the committee has power to disqualify those already screened and declared qualified, he said, “Yes, if you don’t make the appeal screening, then you are disqualified because there is no other appeal after this.”



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