Eleven governorship aspirants of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Anambra state on Saturday said the primary election scheduled to hold in the state did not take place in any part of the state. This was just as the Minister of Labour and Employment, Sen. Chris Ngige, earlier called for the postponement of the primary to Tuesday, June 29, 2021.
The angry aspirants alleged that series of compromises characterised the exercise including late arrival of materials and change of venues, describing the process as fraudulent.
Addressing newsmen in Awka, the state capital, one of the aspirants Chief George Muoghalu who spoke on behalf of the others, said any results purporting to have thrown up any person, regardless of his position would not be accepted. He described the ugly development as unfortunate, regretting that it had left placed big question mark on the democratic credentials of the party. He said, “today was scheduled as APC primaries. But to our greatest disappointment, the election never held. We saw signs of what eventually happened and raised issues about it. The stakeholders meeting scheduled for 1pm, held around 8pm. Apologies were rendered and we accepted.
“In attempt to accommodate the time lost, the primary process scheduled for 8am, by general consensus, was moved to 10am to end at 2pm before the actual voting will start across the 326wards in the state. To everybody’s shock, a scenario that looked predetermined, played out.
The earliest materials arrived around 3.35pm, in breach of the scheduled time. Knowing fully well that a 4-hour period is required, as at 5.45pm, materials were still being distributed. More painful is the fact that while the materials were being distributed, results of elections that never held started filtering in. It’s sad and most unfortunate.
“We had demanded from the committee a very level playing field so that whoever emerges as the party candidate will be seen to have emerged through a credible process which I’m sure will be accepted by every one of us here who don’t see the exercise as a do or die affair. Amobi Nwokafor, Geffory Onyejegbu, Johnbosco Onunkwo, Ben Etiaba, Azuka Okosa, Edozie Mmadu, Paul Orajiaka and Chidozie Nwankwo were among the aspirants that addressed the press.
But Ngige says the postponement is overly important to enable party members across the state to participate as well as give enough room to the Committee members to resolve contentious issues raised by aspirants.
A statement issued by his media office said the Minister who is also the leader of the party in the State, has already made his position known to the chairman of the Primary Committee for the Anambra State Governorship election and the Governor of Ogun state, Prince Dapo Abiodun.
In another correspondence to Chairman of the Caretaker Committee of APC, Governor Mai Mala Buni, Ngige said all the aspirants of the party, except one, were disenchanted with plans for the primaties. “As I write you now 4pm Saturday 26yh June, I’m in my town Alor with two wards and there is no sign of any guber primary election. It’s same story all around d 326 wards of the 21LGAs,” he said