Senator Kabiru Marafa (Zamfara central, APC) has thrown his weight behind the announcement of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) banning All Progressives Congress (APC) from fielding any candidate for next year’s elections in Zamfara State. Marafa who was one of the gubernatorial aspirants under the ruling party, declared yesterday that there were no consensus candidates for any of the elections as claimed by the national chairman of the party , Adams Oshiomhole. Oshiomhole had in the wake of the letter written to the party on Wednesday that for failing to hold primaries supervised by INEC officials before 12 midnight of Sunday, October 7, 2018, the party cannot field candidates for the four different categories of elections aside that of the President, taking place next year, said there were consensus candidates.
The elections are governorship, senatorial and House of Representatives elections as well as elections into the State Assembly seats. But Senator Marafa at a media briefing, debunked the claim of Oshiomhole on consensus candidates saying neither primaries nor consensus arrangement were arrived at by the party in the state before the expiration of time given by INEC, which was 12midnight of Sunday, October 7, 2018. He said: “I read the letter from INEC where they quoted sections of the law that influenced their position. I also read the response made by the APC national chairman. I want to believe that the APC electoral committee that went to Zamfara was misleading the chairman.”
“But as a stakeholder who was present and witnessed the whole process that happened, there was no election in Zamfara on the Saturday October 7, 2018.
“Also, there was no consensus from anybody or by anybody. So, the election committee reported in the contrary. I think that was absolutely wrong. I always stand by the side of the truth. I want to say the truth even if it is against me.”
He however added that he is still a member of the APC, but that if the party does anything wrong, he would not hesitate to point it out. “I’m an APC member to the core, and I’m still with the APC, notwithstanding that the chances are becoming bleak, may be for me as a politician. But I believe in the party. If the party does anything wrong, I should have the courage to say this thing is wrong. “If the party has any way within the law to fill in any candidate, I will be happy, but not when the issues are based on a wrong foundation. So, let us address the issues the way they are.
“We are going into election and the desire of every party is to win and win without any litigation, divert attention and waste resources. I would not want to see one happening to me.
“So, by and large, the only thing I saw wrong in the letter is the assertion that there was a consensus. There was no consensus. We are gubernatorial aspirants but some people stepped down.
“For the remaining five aspirants, there was no consensus till the end of the exercise. The truth of the matter is that the APC electoral committee tried to achieve a consensus among the aspirants for the governorship and senatorial aspirants, but the two factions of the party could not agree. “If you force any consensus or you claim there was one, there is going to be a revolt that there was no consensus, and anybody and some have the right to go to court. “But if under the law, the APC has the right to field candidates, they can go ahead to do it without recourse to either election or consensus. Let us get one thing clear and correct. That there was no election, no consensus”, he explained .
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