Victor Ogunje in Ado Ekiti
The All Progressives Congress (APC), Ekiti State, yesterday disclosed that it had rescheduled the chairmanship and councillorship primaries citing security concern in some local government areas.
Consequently, the party’s decision sparked anger among different aspirants seeking chairmanship and councillorship nominations on its platform across the state.
The Publicity Secretary of Ekiti APC, Hon. Ade Ajayi revealed the decision during a news conference held in Ado Ekiti, noting that a new date would be communicated to the aspirants.
The party had scheduled the chairmanship and councillorship primaries for September 28 in preparation for the council election that the State Independent Electoral Commission had slated for December 7.
At the conference, Ajayi said the party postponed the local government primaries in Ado and Ikole Local Government Areas.
This decision angered the aspirants and delegates and led to speculation that there were plans to impose some preferred chairmanship and councillorship aspirants.
Displeased by the postponement, some aspirants, their supporters and delegates have accused the party of plot to impose a particular candidate on the people.
Two of the aspirants, Alhaji Tajudeen Gidado and Mrs. Tosin Aluko accused the leadership of the party of being undemocratic, warning that they would resist any imposition.
In her reaction, Aluko lamented that the leadership of the party were determined “to impose a candidate. I just heard it now that the council primaries have been postponed.
“I do not want to believe it because Governor Kayode Fayemi issued a statement last week that there would be primary election and that there won’t be imposition.
“We have been waiting here since morning for the primary. Some people are with the deputy chairman of the party now, Sola Elesin. They do not want the primaries to hold because of the plan they have to impose one of us as the candidate.
“I do not know why they are doing this. They should allow people to make their choice because this is democracy. They are doing this because they want to impose someone. But the governor has come out to say he has no preferred candidate.”
One of the delegates, Mr Adeyeye Kayode said: “We do not know why they are postponing the election. The candidates and delegates are here and everywhere is peaceful.
“We have not seen anybody except the police. Whereas they told us that they are fully prepared for the election. We are now thinking that what we heard that there would not be primary in Ado Ekiti is coming to pass.
“We are afraid that if we leave here now they might come around 4:00 p.m. and do kangaroo primaries. We should allow people to participate. That is why it is democracy.”
An agent to one of the aspirants, Babatunde Adesanmi said: “We are not aware , you are just telling us. You people can see that the atmosphere here is conducive for any election. I don’t see any reason for the postponement.
“The only reason should be if the materials are not available, that is the only reasons or if the atmosphere is not conducive but as you can see the police are here to maintain peace already.”