The handling of the recent APC primaries across the states by the Adams Oshiomhole-led National Working Committee is to say the least, quite discouraging. This is evidenced by the gale of protests against the results of the primary elections across the federation, with many stakeholders alleging imposition of candidates by the leadership of the party. In some states, they even passed vote of no confidence on Adams Oshiomhole and declared that his administration had failed members of the All Progressives Congress (APC) across the country.
That of the Federal Capital Territory Abuja was no different. In the AMAC/Bwari Federal constituency for instance, the primaries were marred by irregularities, and in some cases, elections were not held in some wards. Many of the aspirants and participants in the said primaries expressed dissatisfaction with the entire process.
From the earlier results collated from 8 wards in AMAC and 6 wards from Bwari where elections were held, it was clear that Hon. Yakubu Adamu Muhammed was leading with a total number of 250, 872 votes. But the process of announcing the final results by the Primary Elections Committee was scuttled by some vested interest who insisted on imposing a candidate on the people of AMAC/Bwari Federal constituency.
Many APC stakeholders have also accused the national executive of the APC of allegedly manipulating the process. So, the emergence of Dr. Mustapha Lamorde as the APC flag bearer for the AMAC/Bwari Federal Constituency in the forthcoming National Assembly elections did not come to many of us as a surprise, as there was high level of conspiracy that led to his emergence.
Come to think of it. Who is Dr. Mustapha Lamorde in the APC? Dr. Lamorde is just barely a month old in the party with little or no contributions to the growth and activities of our great party. He is relatively unknown in the party. The only reason they could proffer for his ‘selection’ was that his mother works in the Presidency as Special Assistant to the first lady.
Dr. Lamorde is not on ground with the people and does not know the nooks and crannies of the AMAC/Bwari Federal Constituency he is supposed to represent. If a former I-G of Police who has worked for the party, having spent 8 months in the party could not get a waiver to contest for the Senate in Jigawa state, then, giving the party ticket to Lamorde who in the first place, is not qualified for a waiver is an injustice and the height of impunity.
The outright perversion of the will of the good people of AMAC/Bwari Federal Constituency of the FCT is an injustice and highly condemnable. The people deserve the right to have a say and a decisive voice on who represents them.
Our great party, the APC believes in justice, equity and fairness, therefore, the leadership of the party must do the right thing.
In the build up to the 2019 general elections, there were several calls and pressure on Hon. Yakubu Adamu Muhammed from the good people of AMAC/Bwari Federal constituency and other critical stakeholders to represent the people of the constituency in the House of Representatives.
After due consultations and several critical meetings with the people, party members, traditional rulers and relevant stakeholders, Hon. Yakubu Adamu Muhammed finally yielded to the calls of his people.
Having decided to contest for the AMAC/Bwari Federal constituency in the House of Representatives, he went through the necessary processes, purchased the form, was duly screened by the National Working Committee of the party and participated in the primary elections just like any other aspirant.
Today, the result of that election has remained a subject of controversy.
Hon Yakubu Adamu Muhammed has remained a committed and loyal member of the APC. Right from the days of the Congress for Progressive Change (CPC) he has used his time, talents and resources to fund the activities of the party. He worked for and campaigned vigorously towards the emergence of President Muhammadu Buhari in the 2015 general elections. He deserves a better deal from a party he has laboured so much for.
There is no justifiable reason for the imposition of any candidate on the party. Sadly, this ugly development has deliberately denied the electorate and the good people of AMAC/Bwari Federal constituency the opportunity to elect a preferred candidate of their choice.
More dangerous is the fact that imposition of candidates could deprive Nigerians of good leadership at various levels of government. It is worthy of note that this is happening at a time when many Nigerians see our great party as a party that believes in justice, equity and fairness, and a party that has also declared to remain fair and just to every party member.
The question that comes to mind is; what is the fate of the nation’s democracy when people that can faithfully serve the nation are not given the opportunity? This flagrant disregard for due process and rule of law if not checked, is an open invitation for more crises as we approach the 2019 general elections.
In other climes, a level playing field to all potential aspirants is what sustains democracies. It is imperative to note that political offices should serve as duties and not prices to be won by people that can afford the highest price, or by those close to the powers that be.
As the 2019 general elections approaches, the opportunities for people with ideas that can restore confidence in the nation’s democratic process should not be foreclosed by the undue interference of the national secretariat of the party through imposition of candidates.
We cannot continue to pretend that all is well with our great party. The time to put our house in order is now and this requires the effort of all stakeholders.
According to the late world renowned civil rights activist, Martin Luther King (Jnr), “Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter”. This is the time for all well-meaning APC stakeholders to stand up against the rape on our democracy, and ensure that this injustice will not stand.
–Hassan is an APC stakeholder.
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