APC Election Chairman, Sani, in War of Words Over Bribery Allegation

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By John Shiklam in Kaduna

Chairman of All Progressives Congress (APC) primary election committee for Kaduna state, Matthew Iduoriyekemwen, has alleged that Senator Shehu Sani offered him N10 million bribe which he rejected.

But Sani in a reaction dismissed the allegations, saying it was fabricated by failed politicians to malign him.

Iduoriyekemwen who  reacting  to allegations that his committee was bribed  to manipulate the results of the primaries in favour of some of the aspirants in Kaduna State, said the offer was made through one  of his committee members. 

In a recorded telephone interview, he said: “The only person in Kaduna State who offered  me money was Senator Shehu Sani,  through one of my Comittee members, to inform me that N10m gift was set aside for the Committee Chairman.

“And I said we don’t need the money,  asking them what the money was for. Even after the primaries, before the announcement  of results, Senator Shehu and his men put pressure on us to come and take the money. 

“He called me several times,  but we made it clear  to him that we don’t  need cash inducement  at all”.

Iduoriyekemwen, alleged further that the senator “tried to convince me that he was the sole candidate  and that was why I must accept the money.”

Speaking further, he said “I told  him pointedly that  I was in Kaduna on assignment for the National Working Committee,  with a brief to do free and fair primary elections  for duly-cleared candidates”.

When contacted for his reaction via a text message, Sani merely responded by resending the text asking for his reaction. 

However, a statement by his aide, Abdulsamad Chima Amadi, described allegation as laughable.

“Our attention has been drawn to a mischievous and frivolous news making the rounds that the chairman of the Kaduna APC electoral panel purportedly claimed he was offered financial inducements by Sen. Shehu Sani…

“It is laughable for him to claim an aspirant who was the sole candidate cleared in Kaduna central offered him financial inducements” the statement said.

Amadi said: “First of all, Sen Shehu Sani virtually had no rival in the primaries  he was the only person cleared. So what does he need to bribe the committee for?

“Secondly, when the committee and the state government connived to stage a fake senatorial primaries in Kaduna State, Sen Shehu Sani made it crystal clear that he wasn’t going to participate in the so called primaries because it was an illegality.

“So when you look at it  from all angles, Senator Shehu Sani had no reasons what so ever to bribe the committee.”

There has been controversy over the automatic ticket granted to Sani by the National Working Committee (NWC) of the APC.

The controversial senatorial primaries  which was presided over by Iduoriyekemwen’s committee was won by Uba Sani, Governor Nasir El-Rufai’s preferred candidate.

Sani who boycotted the election  had described  it as “Kangaroo election” and had directed his supporters and agents not to participate in it.