Laleye Dipo in Minna
Not less than 61 politicians including three women are vying for the 27 House of Assembly tickets on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party in Niger State.
THISDAY gathered that the screening of the aspirants started at the state secretariat of the party on Friday.
The screening exercise, it was gathered, may not be completed until Sunday or Monday.
Each of the aspirants, according to the findings, paid about N700,000 including about N100,000 said to be “administrative fee”.
It was learnt that the screening of the governorship and National Assembly aspirants could take place in Lafia, Nasarawa State capital, next week because the state is the headquarters of the North Central geo-political zone.
The screening panel in the state is headed by a former Aviation Minister, Alhaji Bashir Yuguda, with Mr. Sunday Zoaka as secretary.
Other members of the committee are Mr. Benjamin Idoko Apogo, Alhaji Mohammed Gambo and Alhaji Ahmed Bachaka.
In the meantime, political activities heightened during the week in the state as both the ruling APC and the PDP prepared for the 2019 general election.
The APC stakeholders met at the party secretariat where it was decided that the direct primary method would be adopted to pick candidates that would fly the party’s flags in all the elections slated for next year.
However, all the three senators and four out of the 11 House of Representatives members in the National Assembly were absent at the stakeholders’ meeting.
It was not known why the federal lawmakers did not attend the meeting but for sometime now there had been speculations that they would defect from the party over the way and manner the executive arm of government and the party leadership were running the party and the state.
While the stakeholders’ meeting was ongoing, it was learnt that Senator David Umaru was busy distributing empowerment tools and scholarships to some youths in his senatorial zone.
Also in the last couple of months the affected federal lawmakers had not attended the APC expanded caucus committee.