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2019: Adamawa APC stakeholders led by Babachir Lawal rejects indirect primary

- APC stakeholders in Adamawa have rejected the indirect primary election planned by the state government

- The stakeholders led by a SGF, Mr Babachir Lawal also complained about marginalization

- They also complained that the ruling party's congresses in the state earlier in the year, were hijacked by the Adamawa government

All Progressives Congress (APC) stakeholders in Adamawa have rejected the indirect primaries planned by the state government ahead of the primary elections.

The stakeholders led by the immediate past Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Engr. Babachir Lawal also complained about marginalization and hijacking of the state congresses by the Adamawa government.

They made the allegations at a press briefing held in Yola, the state capital on Saturday, September 15.

READ ALSO: 63 political parties notify INEC over presidential primaries

They lamented that respectable stakeholders in the party have been increasingly marginalized and party activities and processes carried out in secrecy to exclude legitimate interests.

“This policy of exclusion came to a head with the purported meeting of the State Executive Committee convened at the Government House on Monday, September 3, 2018 where indirect primaries was allegedly adopted as mode of electing party flag bearers.

“That meeting was convened secretly and thus, we the undersigned aspirants, statutory delegates and critical stakeholders were kept in the dark and were not invited. It was therefore a meeting of like-minds, persons who are prepared to perpetuate illegality to satisfy the whims of a single individual who has totally lost out in popularity and integrity.

“We, as aspirants, statutory delegates and stakeholders want to unequivocally dissociate ourselves from the purported resolution which was done in bad faith and is bound to affect the image and chances of our great party in the forthcoming elections,” the former SGF said.

They aligned with the national headquarters of the APC which adopted the direct primary option, stressing that a larger majority of APC members in Adamawa were in support of the decision.

Babachir said: “Our members are pleased that they are going to help the party in nominating credible, acceptable and marketable candidates to fly the party’s flag. We, therefore, cannot allow unpopular persons who are afraid of voters to change the rule of the game.

“The focus of our APC government on integrity exemplified by transparency, accountability and total eradication of corrupt practices should have no room for indirect primaries. It is in his commitment to the culture of probity and accountability that President Muhammadu Buhari opted for direct primaries.

“As we stated in our letter to our dear national chairman NEC, we affirm support for direct Primaries based on our firm belief that encapsulates the following among other merits.

“We also want to assure the chairman, and by extension the national secretariat, that Adamawa state is fit and ready for direct primaries. There is the needed tranquility and peace to guarantee peaceful election all over the state.”

He lamented that their supporters were completely shut out of the congresses at all levels in the state in May this year.

“Forms were hoarded by state party officials and our supporters only managed to purchase forms after we protested to the national headquarters and an extension was granted to accommodate us.

“Yet, the process was still hijacked and committees sent to conduct those congresses were either bought over or hijacked to do the bidding of the state government,” he alleged.

The stakeholders, however, assured the APC of their support and loyalty, expressing hope that, “the right will be done.” gathered that key members of the group includes a former chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission; Mallam Nuhu Ribadu, Senators Ahmed Abubakar Mo’Allayidi, Abubakar Halilu Girei and Bello Tukur.

Others are a former governorship candidate in the state on the platforms of the defunct Action Congress of Nigeria; Engr. Markus Gundiri and a current governorship aspirant of the APC; Dr. Mahmoud Halilu.

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Meanwhile, the APC in Bauchi has adopted President Muhammadu Buhari and Governor Mohammed Abubakar of the state as its presidential and gubernatorial candidates respectively for the 2019 general elections.

This was made known in a statement sent to journalists on Friday, September 14, by the press secretary to the governor, Abubakar Al-Saddique.

He said that the party took the decision at its stakeholders’ meeting on Thursday, September 13, at the Government House, Bauchi.

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