Kogi APC stakeholders reject indirect primary
•Says Governor Bello is hard to sell
Ahead of November governorship election in Kogi state, certain chieftains of the ruling All Progressives Congress,(APC) have kicked against the adoption of indirect primary for the emergence of the party standard bearer.
The incumbent governor, Yahaya Bello who is smarting for a fresh ticket settled for the indirect primary at the weekend in Lokoja, along with his loyalists.
Findings revealed that the APC 2014 Constitution, (as amended) made provisions for three options for the selections of its candidates for elective offices: direct, indirect and consensus.
But about 21 governorship aspirants at a press briefing in Abuja on Monday rejected the indirect option adopted by Governor Bello and his faction of the state chapter of the party.
Speaking under the aegis of Kogi APC stakeholders forum, Senator Alex Kadri who spoke with newsmen expressed concern that the APC could lose the state to the main opposition party, the Peoples Democratic Party, (PDP) if Governor Bello was allowed to manipulate the process as he noted that the indirect primary was subject to manipulation by Governor Bello.
He said: “We are opposed to Yahaya Bello contrived indirect primary. He can’t be a judge in his own case. So we are saying it must be direct primary. We believe his faction can’t do the primary. “We are calling on the National Working Committee, (NWC) to dissolve the state executive and create a caretaker committee to run the affairs of the state.
“We have bent over backwards to accommodate Governor Bello. In 2015, he worked for PDP and as at that time, he wasn’t a registered voter in Kogi state!
“We won’t accept indirect primary for the selection of governorship candidate. We won’t allow Governor Bello to choose for us; the insult on Kogi people is too much.”
The party chieftains further revealed that efforts by the immediate past national working committee led by Chief Odigie Oyegun and the current leadership under Comrade Adams Oshiomhole were frustrated by Governor Bello.
” We have made representations to the NWC. They set up the Tony Mommoh committee, they refused to implement, they also created the General Chris Garba and we met the team under Chief Odigie Oyegun. We met with them and even met the Vice -President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo.
“It is difficult to sell Yahaya Bello to the Kogi electorate. If the party had worked with recommendations of Tony Mommoh or General Garba, we won’t be where we are. The fact of the matter is that Governor Bello isn’t competent. High court judges are being owed 12 months salary. The man has no standard and we expect the APC NWC to do the needful. The man they posted to Kogi has failed.”
They equally decried the insecurity in the state.
” The average boy in Kogi has AK47. It is the Kogi people they are killing. I believe the party would listen to us, those of us who are complaining are the original voters. We don’t want the House we built to be destroyed.”
Amongst the aspirants in attendance were Prince Mustapha Mona Audu, Alhaji Aliyu Zakari Jiya, Dr Aminu Musa Audu, Professor Seidu Mohammed Oga, Engineer Kashim Ali and 16 others.