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Ondo PDP Berates APC Over Poor Governorship Primary Election 

 

The Ondo State chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has condemned the All Progressives Congress (APC) governorship primary election in Ondo State, describing as an “anticlimax and mockery of democracy.”

A statement signed by the Ondo PDP Publicity Secretary, Kennedy Ikantu Peretei, alleged that election did not hold in many of the centres where it was scheduled to hold.

It also claimed that there were reported cases of violence in Akure South and Okitipupa Local Government Areas, where political thugs had a field day.

Meanwhile, the APC has announced that the exercise will continue Sunday with election in 13 wards in Okitipupa Local Government Area because of “validated report” that election did not hold there.

According to the Chairman of the primary election committee, Governor Usman Ododo of Kogi State, collation of results will commence immediately after the Okitipupa election.

The PDP statement reads, “The over hyped All Progressives Congress (APC) Governorship Primary Election in Ondo State turned out to be a huge charade and a mockery of democracy in every sense of the word.

“The National headquarters of the party raked in a handsome sum of N830m from unsuspecting aspirants who took photographs with their Nomination Forms in Abuja with their supporters. Little did they know that the exercise would be an anticlimax and their aspirations to occupy the number one seat in the State completely eclipsed and all the efforts headed for the dustbin.

“The signs that all would not be well emerged 48 hours before the primary when five of the aspirants petitioned the APC National Headquarters about irregularities on the accredited members for the primary.

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“Four years ago, former Kogi State Governor, Yahaya Bello, who has been declared wanted by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) for N85 billion fraud, presided over a similar event in Akure, where none of the aspirants, sighted the Delegates list before the primary. As at the morning of the election, it was not clear whether it was going to be Direct or Indirect primary. That was the exercise that produced former Governor Rotimi Akeredolu as candidate of the APC for 2020 Governorship election.

“This time, Gov Ahmed Usman Ododo, Bello’s successor in office has wrecked more havoc than his boss.

“Journalists who tried to monitor the primary were shocked that in almost all the centres that elections were supposed to hold, there were no election materials, neither were there officials to conduct the exercise. The Akure City Hall, one of the supposed centers was empty as at 1.00pm.

“Instead, there were reported cases of violence in Akure South and Okitipupa Local Government Areas, where political thugs had a field day. In one of the videos that was seen online to create impression that the exercise held, the returning officer counted to 400 and jumped to 560. Some of the aspirants have since called for the cancellation of the exercise.

“If the APC cannot conduct a free, fair, transparent and credible primary election for 171,922 of their members, they should perish the idea of presiding over the affairs of Ondo State beyond the eight years in which they have practically stagnated the State.

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“It is a shame that, the APC cannot bring only one of their sixteen aspirants to square up with other political parties in the general election through a process that is above board. That alone, is an affirmation that, the party should be consigned to dustbin of history, where it rightfully belongs.

“The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Ondo State Chapter will once again demonstrate its superior organizational sagacity and democratic credentials this week, through a Governorship Primary Election that will be covered live by media houses and Non-Governmental Organizations in the full glare of the world.

“As at the early hours of today, Journalists were still waiting for the outcome of the charade that Usman Ododo and Senator Ovie Omo-Agege called a primary election in Ondo State.”

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