THE crisis within the Ondo State Chapter of the All Progressives Congress (APC) on Thursday, appeared not to have end, as the faction of the party in the state, led by Hon. Idowu Otetubi adopted direct primaries for selecting all its candidates ahead of the 2019 general election.
It will be recalled that the Ade Adetimehin led executive had last Tuesday adopted indirect primaries as a mode of selecting candidates for the forthcoming general election.
However, in a communiqué issued on Thursday by the Otetubi faction of the party after a stakeholders meeting in Akure, Ondo state capital, the stakeholders threw their weight in support of the direct primaries saying this was aimed in reflecting the true position of party members on their choice of candidates.
Reading the faction communique after the meeting, Otetubi said they decided to embrace direct primaries for the election because “It holds the key to the unity of APC in Ondo state.”
He expressed the faction’s commitment to the decision of the National body of the party on the mode of election to be adopted, noting that the direct mode of primaries is less expensive and representative enough and possess the capacity to unite the party.
The communiqué read “We are committed to the progressive dispositions of our party at the national level.
We equally share the view that a Democrat must embrace direct primary as openly embraced by President Muhammadu Buhari and leaders of our party. We are poised to replicate same voting system here in Ondo state.
“Direct primary, unlike indirect that gives a huge privilege of selection of candidates to a negligible few privilege individuals that are selected to honour the bidding of those with deep pockets.
“Direct primary will not only return power and right of choice to party members, it will conquer imposition and tendency of an emperor in leadership that has chosen to stray away from progressive politics and democratic norms.”
“Pending the time the court will adjudicate on the fraudulent delegate lists that a few persons wrote in the corners of their rooms and purportedly forced on the party will be resolved, a direct primary is the only way available to elect the candidates of the party for the 2019 general elections in Ondo state”.
The faction described the position of the Adetimehin led faction on the non-availability of membership register as hiding under one finger and said “APC membership register is with the national secretariat in Abuja.
“Since it is updated daily, the soft and the hard copies shall be made available to our state and any other states in Nigeria for the purpose of direct Primary, we are convinced its implementations will be smooth and easy.”
Speaking on the local government election scheduled for December, the faction said that “we resolve that the current crops of people that are promoting themselves as party executives in our party are not known to the law, hence the court case we instituted to stop them from committing further illegality.
“We are therefore pleased that a valid injunction has been granted by the court to stop the injustice and brazen shenanigans of a few elements that are out to walk down our party to disunity and ultimately, failure in the coming elections.
“We are pleased that the court has granted the order and the submission of names by the Adetimehin led executive for the local government election has been forthwith put on hold pending the determination of the main suit.
The group, however, pledged their loyalty and commitment to the national chairman of the party, Adams Oshiomole, President Muhammadu Buhari and the National leader of the party, Senator Bola Ahmed Tinubu, for holding strongly to the tenets of democracy.
The communique also read; “we are open to the public interrogation of the state of the party in Ondo state.
This we believe will expose the antics of some elements who, because of their privilege government positions, are creating artificial unity when none exist in the party.
“We are committed to the aspirants that have since obtained forms from our secretariat and have submitted same. We assure them of the level playground that Direct primary offers.
“The stakeholders resolve to begin a statewide campaign in preparations for the 2019 general elections. The date and schedule of the campaign will be announced soon.”