Femi Ogbonnikan In Abeokuta
Chilling revelations arising from massive frauds that characterised the recently conducted legislative primaries into both the national and state House of Assembly seats in Ogun State have emerged.
Also, the report of the National Working Committee (NWC) members of the All Progressives Congress (APC) deployed in the state has indicted the state leadership hierarchy of hijacking the entire exercise to favour their aspirants who have all emerged as candidates, even before the results were yet to be officially declared by the NWC.
According to the report of the legislative primaries held in Ogun State on October 7 obtained by THISDAY yesterday, it was gathered that “the entire process was heavily compromised and surrendered to the state government officials and the party executive members.”
The report dated October 9, signed and addressed to the National Chairman of the party, Adams Oshiomhole, by a member of the NWC legislative primaries, Hon. Okey Nnonyelu, posted to the state alleged that “the state chapter led by Chief Derin Adebiyi recruited the returning officers, conducted the primaries, collated and submitted the results to the committee for declaration and submission to the NWC.”
However, Nnonyelu said the planned manipulation of the entire exercise began to play itself out on October 6, the evening of the day they checked in at the Green Legacy Hotel, Abiola Way, Abeokuta, the state capital, where the committee held its maiden briefing and inaugural meeting, led by Col A A Chiroma and it subsequently dealt with the core mandates they were assigned for, ranging from how to carry along all the aspirants on the committees’ assignment and ensure that each aspirant nominates a member from each local government as ad-hoc to work with the NWC representatives.
The meeting was held to acquaint aspirants with them with the modalities and guidelines for the primaries, scheduled for October 7, but the two items on the agenda were compromised and ignored by the NWC representatives.
Rather, to their utter dismay, it was gathered that Ogun State protocol officials made a surprise visit to the Green Legacy Hotel at about 8 p.m. and evacuated all the committee members to Mitros Hotel, which belongs to the state government within the same precinct of Abeokuta.
“At this hotel, the plan started to change with the visit of the state party Chairman, Adebiyi, and some party stalwarts to the members of the committee and the process, including materials, logistics among others were surrendered and handed over to the state party hierarchy.
“At this state, the committee ostensibly surrendered its mandate to the state structure (the Ogun State party chairman).
“At about 11:00a.m., the chairman of the committee addressed all the aspirants and some stakeholders.
“But, with a clear departure from the original position of the committee, issues about the ad-hoc and inputs by the aspirants were rebuffed by the committee.
“Therefore, the aspirants were dismissed to face the voters, and being a Sunday, the meeting came to an abrupt end,” Nnonyelu said.
He further alleged that “while all committee members were in the hotel, the collated results were brought in batches at about 21:00 by a fair complexion man, who introduced himself as the Chief of Staff to the Ogun State party chairman.
“Enquiry from my committee chairman, why we surrendered our materials to both the machinery of Ogun State chairman and the party at the state level has not yielded positive result.”