OBIORA IFOH, Abuja
Amidst protest from aggrieved aspirants, the All Progressives Congress (APC), will today submit the name of the cousin of the party’s National leader, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, Oyetola, Isiaka Adegboyega, as its candidate for September 22 governorship election in Osun State.
The direct primary was however marred by complaints and withdrawals as most of the aspirants had earlier described the party’s decision to adopt direct primary as a grand design to favour Oyetola, who is also the current Chief of Staff to outgoing Governor Rauf Aregbesola.
Secretary to the State Government, Moshood Adeoti, who withdrew from the race, through his campaign organisation, had alleged that the primary was a mere endorsement of Mr Oyetola, whom he described as a cousin of Tinubu.
Another aspirant, Kunle Adegoke also alleged that the party leaders used the direct primary to “favour a particular aspirant of their choice, somebody that is an anointed aspirant of their choice.”
Speaking while submitting its report to the National Chairman of APC, Governor of Zamfara State and Chairman of the Election Committee, Abdulazeez Yari, described the exercise as a unique one, considering the nature of the assignment.
“Sincerely, I did not even understand what the party meant by direct primary until the Chairman briefed me on exactly what it is all about. I thought our party just asked us to go and pick a consensus candidate, but when we went to Osun, the people expressed their determination to be part of picking who represents the party, unlike the indirect primary method. So, that was the wish of the people. My hope is that this system could be introduced to more states because it is not only transparent; it is much cheaper and very effective
“We held a meeting with all the aspirants who were all given an opportunity to speak, though two of the aspirants withdrew from the race, all others participated fully and had a vote recorded for them in the 332 pooling boots in the Local Government Areas. The winner is Oyetola Adegboyega Isiaka who scored 127, 017 votes, followed by Yusuffu with 21, 975 voted. The full result will be submitted on Monday for onward transmission to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) today, which is the last date for submission,”, he noted
In his response, APC national Chairman, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole, expressed the satisfaction of the NWC on the smooth conduct of the Osun primary, stressing that it was not only peaceful, but transparent and all the aspirants have admitted to the outcome.
“We accept this report in line with the provisions of our constitution and we have set up in line with our rules, an appeal panel because however clean a report appears to be, members of our party who may be aggrieved either for the right reasons or for the wrong reasons, they have the right of appeal that our party constitution provides for. Tomorrow (Today), because that is the last day up to 12 midnight by Monday, we are obliged by INEC rules to submit the name of our candidate,” he said.
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