BY IGHO OYOYO, Abuja
Aggrieved members of the All Progressives Congress (APC) under the auspices of Concerned APC Faithful in Abuja Municipal Area Council (AMAC) have called on the national leadership of the party and the FCT APC technical committee to declare Hon. Murtala Karshi as winner of the just concluded AMAC chairmanship primary election.
Spokesperson of the group, Comrade Joseph Jonah, while speaking at a press conference on Monday, said the result declared did not reflect the true picture of what transpired during the primary election, pointing out that the real winner of the exercise is Hon. Karshi whose nine votes were not declared and was awarded 106 votes instead of 115, which is higher than 110 votes scored by Hon. Suleiman Gwagwa.
Jonah further explained that the contentious nine votes that were not declared were more than the four votes margin gotten by Suleiman Gwagwa against Karshi.
He alleged that Karshi was robbed because Gwagwa is being backed by the outgoing chairman of AMAC, Abdullahi Candido.
According to him, Karshi is the true winner of the primary election, because the nine rejected votes belonged to him and there was no way he would not have won if they did not deny him the votes.
“Also, one of the things we observed during the primaries, was that unlike other respected party stakeholders like Hon. Bitrus Jisalo and others that came to the primary, they voted and left. But, the chairman of the council, Hon. Abdullahi Candido and his vice chairman sat in front of the ballot boxes, intimidating the delegates with their presence, while their thugs were outside waiting till the end of the election.
“Some of us heard the thugs threatening some delegates outside the voting centre that any delegate that voted Murtala Karshi will not leave the centre alive. So, having been threatened outside, they met the sharp staring gaze of the chairman and they have no choice but to get scared and probably do otherwise.
“But the law says that if you are a stakeholder and a voter, you should vote and leave the centre, so that your presence will not intimidate the delegates. Even the party agents were far from the ballot boxes, but Candido was sitting right in front of the ballot boxes,” he said.
According to Jonah, legally and by electoral law, the nine votes that Karshi was laying claim to their revalidation belong to him, because a winner cannot be declared when the number of votes rejected is more than the margin difference.
“Moreover, from our investigation, Hon. Suleiman Gwagwa has not been a member of the APC, he was only brought him by the AMAC chairman, to impose him on AMAC residents. Murtala Karshi has laboured for this party for years and now that he is supposed to reap the fruits of his labour, he has been robbed of his votes.
“In the general election, Karshi is the only candidate that has the charisma to win the election for APC. If we allow that fake result to stand, we will definitely lose AMAC to the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
“So, we are appealing to the national leadership and the technical committee to rescue AMAC from people that do not mean well for us and declare Murtala Karshi winner of the primary, because of the nine votes that they denied him,” he added.
The concerned APC faithful also said that the chairman of the electoral committee, who sensed the discrepancy in the result wanted to make correction, but was allegedly intimidated by Hon. Gabriel Bravo, an agent of Gwagwa and serving supervisory councillor of Candido.