Ahead of the November 16 Kogi State governorship election, members and stakeholders of the ruling All Progressives Congees (APC) are sharply divided over the mode of primary to be adopted in picking the party’s flag bearer.
While supporters of Governor Yahaya Bello, who is seeking a second term in office and some others, are rooting for indirect primaries, those opposed to his re-election, including members of the APC Justice Forum, have called on the national leadership of the party to allow for direct primary in deciding who picks the Kogi APC governorship ticket.
Bello, on his part, appeared unperturbed on the mode of the primary, saying he is sure of victory irrespective of the shadow election method adopted. Some aggrieved party elders have however vowed to stop him.
The Kogi APC on Saturday said that it has adopted indirect primaries for conduct of its primaries for the governorship election. While the Kogi APC primary is billed to hold in August, the governorship poll has been fixed for 16 November, by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).
The leadership of the Kogi APC adopted the indirect primary at the stakeholders’ meeting at the party’s secretariat in Lokoja. The resolution followed a motion by the Speaker of the Kogi State House of Assembly, Prince Matthew Kolawole. Members of the Justice Forum and Governor Bello’s DG Campaign (2015), Dr Yakubu Ogwalawo, at an outing on Saturday in Ankpa, however, denounced Bello.
They called on Abuja to ensure an acceptable candidate emerge through direct primary. Present at the sensitisation for APC governorship aspirants from the Kogi East Senatorial district are: Mona Audu, Yusuf Ali, Usman Maiyanga, Sani Lulu and the representatives of Jubril Usman, a former Chief of Naval Staff and Kogi APC gov aspirant.
Convener of the APC Justice Forum, Mr. Goodman Akwu demanded for direct primary, asserting that Bello must not be “allowed to handpick delegates that will, in turn, return him as candidate”.