APC: Kano, Niger join Lagos for direct primary

More state chapters of the All Progressives Congress (APC) have joined Lagos to adopt the direct primary option to pick their candidates for next year’s elections.

Kano and Niger states yesterday voted for the option in which all card-carrying members of the party will pick candidates for elective offices.

The primaries are scheduled for between September 20 when the presidential primary will hold and October 2, when the House of Assembly candidates will be picked.

The party’s National Executive Committee (NEC) last Thursday adopted direct primary “to take the party to its members” who will vote for candidates of their choice.

It, however, granted a concession to states with peculiarities that will make it imposible to implement direct primary to adopt either indirect primary or the consensus option.

They must, however, apply to the National Working Committee (NWC) with evidence of approval of the State Working Committee (SWC) and critical stakeholders.

Yesterday, party leaders and stakeholders in many states met to decide on the options.

Announcing the decision in Kano, State Chairman Abdullahi Abbas said the decision would improve the stock of the APC in the 2019 election as well as other elections.

He added that “the decision was unanimously endorsed by Governor Abdullahi Ganduje, Senators Kabiru Gaya and Barau Jibrin, 13 members of the House of Representatives led by Chief Whip Alhassan Ado Doguwa.

“Others are 33 members of the House of Assembly, led by the Speaker, Kabiru Al Hassan Rurum, 53 state Executive Committee members of the party, 44 elected local council chairmen and 44 local government chairmen and secretaries of the party.”

Niger State said the decision was taken so that every bonafide member would participate in the process of picking candidates.

State Secretary Mohammed Liman told reporters that the party was prepared for all the primaries, adding that its membership record would be accurate and up to date.

Although the decision on direct primary was taken by Lagos State Stakeholders last month before that mode of primary was descided by the NEC, state Chairman Babatunde Balogun reaffirmed yesterday that the postion had not changed.

“We are sticking to our decision,” he said on the telephone.

Ogun State adopted direct primary at its meeting yesterday but as a back-up to the consensus mode they opted for.

The communique issued at the end of the State Executive Committee/ stakeholders meeting by Publicity Secretary Wole Elegbede said “The APC in Ogun State shall have a consensus primary for all elective positions in the 2019 elections. Where consensus fails, a direct primary will be used to choose a candidate for such a position.”

Kebbi State also adopted consensus.

At its meeting yesterday, President Muhammadu Buhari and Governor Atiku Bagudu were unabimously endorsed to run for fresh terms.

Senator Bala Ibn Na’Allah, who announced the decision, said where consensus fails, indirect primary will be used to pick candidates.

The Ondo State chapter of the party voted for indirect primary after a meeting attended by Governor Rotimi Akerdolu and Deputy Governor Agboola Ajayi.

House of Assembly Speaker Bamidele Oloyelogun moved the

motion for indirect primary, which was seconded by Owo Local Government Chairman Sydney Ogunleye.

Senator Tayo Alasuadura said Indrect primary would be in the interest of the members. But Ondo North Senator Ajayi Boroffice said he was not aware of the meeting.

Other states – Sokoto, Plateau, Nasarawa, Borno, Yobe and Zamfara  – adopted indirect primary.

The stakeholders in almost all the states adopted Buhari’s candidature.

Sokoto State Deputy Governor Ahmed Aliyu Sokoto, who described Senator Aliyu Magatakarda Wamakko as the party’s leader, told reporters after the meeting, which he presided over, that “ the meeting also expressed happiness with the exemplary and unparalleled way Senator Wamakko is running the affairs of the great party .

“Accordingly, we endorsed President Muhammadu Buhari as the party’s sole presidential candidate.”

Borno State Deputy Governor Usman Mamman Durkwa presided over the meeting in the absence of Governor Kashim Shetimma, who is on an international assignment in Germany.

Senator Abubakar Kyari, Mohammed Tahir Monguno  and Speaker Abdulkareem Lawal spoke on behalf of their colleagues.

Senator Ali Ndume moved the motion for the adoption of indirect primaries. It was seconded by Hon. Dr. Asabe Vilita Bashir (Damboa/Chibok/Gwoza Federal Constituency).

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