Sylvester Idowu in Warri
Ahead of the All Progressive Congress (APC) gubernatorial primaries slated for Saturday, leaders, elders and stakeholders of the party in Delta North Senatorial district of the state have endorsed Prof. Pat Utomi as its consensus candidate.
This development indicates that Utomi will now square it up with another governorship aspirant, Chief Great Ovedje Ogboru, from Delta-central district.
The choice of Utomi, THISDAY gathered, was the outcome of a rigorous search where party leaders from Delta North District, in a bid to brighten the chance of the zone in producing the party’s aspirant decided to prune down the number of aspirants from the district.
A reliable source in the know disclosed that the process of identifying one among the group of the aspirants from Delta North, best for governor, began several months ago on two fronts.
“One of the processes was initiated through a conscious decision of the aspirants by themselves, and was moderated by Hon. Paul Adingumpu, while the other was overseen by the Minister of State, Petroleum Resources Dr. Ibe Kachikwu, acting on a wider brief from the political leadership of the party”, the source said.
While Kachikwu’s process ended up with Prof. Utomi and Dr. Cairo Ojougboh, as number one and two respectively, the Adingumpu’s process which focused on narrowing this to a singular choice, closed out with Prof. Utomi as the preferred candidate.
A political associate of the Minister who spoke anonymously confirmed that Utomi is the choice of Delta North.
“As we speak, the Hon. Minister has since communicated the outcome of his search assignment to the National Chairman, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole and the National Leader of APC, Bola Tinubu.” he
With this development, the party governorship ticket is now more of a two-horse race between Chief Ogboru and Prof. Utomi, who
enjoys an overwhelming support of delegates from the Delta North district with nine local government areas, as well as a majority of delegates from Delta South who, being minorities, appear more inclined to the spirit of equity and fairness in the political affairs of Delta State.
Spokesman of Pat Utomi Support Hub, “PUSH 2019” Mr. Leonard Obibi, said the news was expected, because amongst the aspirants running for the party’s governorship ticket in the state, Utomi stood head above the shoulders of all.
He assured that other aspirants from the zone would play critical roles in the Delta APC Rescue Mission.
Borno APC Gubernatorial Aspirants Settle for Indirect Primaries
Michael Olugbode, in Maiduguri
Majority of the All Progressives Congress (APC) governorship aspirants in Saturday’s primaries in Borno State have endorsed the indirect mode to determine the candidate of party at next elections.
The stakeholders of the party at a meeting over two weeks ago voted for indirect primaries, which was subsequently endorsed by the national secretariat of the party.
Fourteen of the over 20 gubernatorial aspirants, rising from a meeting at the Government House in Maiduguri yesterday, agreed to an indirect primaries.
Nigeria’s Ambassador to China and one of the aspirants, Baba Ahmed Jidda, told journalists on behalf of 13 other attendees that they have all agreed on indirect primaries.
He said: “The Borno State Chapter of APC has collectively decided to elect its candidates into various elective positions, through the indirect primaries. This is in accordance with the provisions of the party’s constitution and final decision of the party’s National Working Committee.
“To decide on the best option to determine the party’s candidates into different elective offices taking into consideration the physical and political peculiarities of the state, it was unanimously resolved at the meeting that the party would adopt the indirect method of primary elections. This resolution was also supported by majority of the aspirants for the governorship positions.”
Jidda stressed that few weeks ago, APC in the State convened a meeting involving critical party excos at the state, local government and ward levels and after series of meetings, decided to endorsed Borno State APC position on the primaries and issued press statement to the effect that Borno State would conduct its primaries via indirect mode.
Among the aspirants who attended the meeting are Alhaji Yuguda Dibal, Amb. Baba Ahmed Jidda, Hon. Mohammed Makinta, Hon. Mai Sheriff, Sen. Abu Kyari, Sen. Babakaka Garbai, Hon. Adamu Lawan, Alhaji Mustapha Fannarambe, Kaka Shehu Lawan.
Others are Prof. Umara Babagana, Alhaji Umaru Alkali, Hon. Babagana Banki, Alhaji Mohammed Kumalia and Alhaji Gambo Lawan.
Notable absentees at the meeting include, Alhaji Kashim Imam and Alhaji Idris Usman.