Delegates and some members of National and State Houses of Assembly yesterday protested the postponement of Adamawa governorship primary election by the National Working Committee (NWC) of the All Progressives Congress (APC).
The party’s NWC also shifted governorship primaries in Lagos, Zamfara and Enugu States.
A statement issued by the acting national publicity secretary of the party, Mr Yekini Nabena, announced the rescheduling of governorship primaries for Adamawa, Enugu and Lagos states.
The governorship primaries for Adamawa and Enugu have been shifted to Thursday, while those of Lagos and Zamfara hold today.
In Zamfara, the chairman of the APC primary committee, Dr. Abubakar Dari, said the gubernatorial primary election had been shifted to today after it was postponed from Sunday to yesterday.
LEADERSHIP observed that APC members thronged the primary election centres in Zamfara as early as 7:00am for the election.
Our correspondent reports that delegates who were gathered for the excercise expressed disappointment over the shift.
Addressing journalists after a stakeholders meeting held at the State Police Command, the committee chairman said the postponement of the election to today was a decision reached by the stakeholders, including all the gubernatorial aspirants of the party.
In Adamawa, the state governor, Governor Mohammed Bindow, while addressing protesting delegates at Ribadu Square, urged them to take it easy and accept whatever happened as an act of God.
He said, “I want to apologise to you over the development and to thank you for your patience and cooperation as we await further directive from the party.
“I remain loyal to the party and urge every party member in Adamawa to be calm and loyal party member”.
Also speaking, chairman of House of Representatives Committee on Information, Abdulrazak Namdas, urged the delegates and lawmakers to remain calm, adding that whatever the situation, be it direct or indirect primaries, it is the people of Adamawa that will vote for the candidates of their choice.
“We are not afraid of facing direct or indirect primaries,” Namdas said.
The APC primaries initially scheduled for Sunday ran into a hitch when two of the three aspirants, Mallam Nuhu Ribadu and Dr Mahmood Halilu contesting with Governor Bindow announced their withdrawal over the method of primaries and choice of venue.
In rescheduling the governorship primaries in Lagos, Enugu and Adamawa states, the APC NWC also changed the mode of primaries for Enugu and Adamawa from indirect to direct Primaries.
LEADERSHIP reports that the primaries for Lagos and Imo were earlier slated for Monday. While those of Imo and Lagos was moved to today.
“Lagos Governorship Primaries holds Tuesday, October 2, 2018.
Enugu and Adamawa Direct governorship Primaries holds Thursday, October 4, 2018”, the statement noted.
Ribadu Backtracks, Rejoins Race
Meanwhile, hours after he withdrew from the race, former EFCC chairman, Malam Nuhu Ribadu yesterday made a U-turn and indicated interest to participate in the rescheduled Adamawa APC governorship primary election.
The director-general, Rib adu campaign organisation, Alhaji Salihu Bawuro, made the announcement at a news conference in Yola.
Ribadu withdrew from the primary election on Sunday evening as the exercise was about to start but the exercise was cancelled and rescheduled for Thursday.
Bawuro said the Ribadu campaign organisation was satisfied with the decision taken by the party’s national headquarters on the cancelation and rescheduling of the governorship primaries in the state.
“Now that the national headquarters had intervened to correct the abnormalities surrounding the Sunday’s unsuccessful primaries, Malam Nuhu Ribadu will be in full contest now that it is the direct primaries,’’ Bawuro said.
He said that the organisation was well prepared to participate in the election, adding that it would do everything possible to ensure free and fair primaries.
Violence Mars Exercise In Imo
Meanwhile, the governorship primary election of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Imo State yesterday witnessed chains of scuffles that led to violence between members of the camp loyal to Rochas Okorocha known as Ugwumba movement and those of the opposition called Coalition Alliance.
As at press time, two persons were feared killed from the fracas that ensued.
Our correspondent who monitored the exercise observed that there was late arrival of electoral materials at the party secretariat in Okigwe Road.
The party secretariat was besieged by anxious party members, even as party bigwigs stayed back in Abuja and were no where to be seen in the state.
At the Uzii layout primary school within Owerri Municipal Council, party members arrived as early as 8:30am for accreditation, which however did not commence till 11am.
In virtually all the wards in the Ohaji/Egbema/Oguta local government areas, irate party members rabidly opposed to the planned imposition of Uche Nwosu as the party’s governorship candidate by Governor Okorocha impounded all vehicles on sight bearing the Ugwumba Movement inscription and diverted them to unknown destination.
In the Mbaitoli local government area where the deputy governor, Prince Eze Madumere, hails from, some vehicles belonging to the movement were reportedly set ablaze.
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