The last has been heard about the All Progressives Congress (APC) governorship primary election in Kogi state.
Addressing newsmen in Abuja on Saturday, four aspirants insisted the primary election did not hold anywhere in the state.
Senator Smart Adeyemi, Prince Shuaibu Abubakar Audu, Murtala Yakubu Ajaka and Prof. Stephen Oseni, all contestants in the primary election scheduled to hold on 14th of April 2023 in Kogi state, said results announced were written a day before the exercise.
They accused the Governor of the state, Alh. Yahaya Bello of manipulating the result to favour his cousin.
According to them, the chairman of the APC primary election, the Governor of Zanfara State, Bello Matawalle, left in a hurry after witnessing the sham.
Explaining further they said it was against the party’s guidelines for the secretary to preside in the absence of the chairman.
They, however, expressed confidence that the party’s National Working Committee would not allow it to stand, adding that they will get justice
Secretary of the Kogi State APC Primary Election Committee had announced the former Auditor General for Local Governments in Kogi State, Alhaji Ahmed Usman Ododo as the winner of the governorship primary election allegedly conducted across the state on Friday.
The secretary declared Ododo who is from the same ward, Local Government as Bello and his anointed as the party’s flagbearer in the forthcoming November 11, election.
Senator Adeyemi who is representing Kogi West in the 9th National Assembly said the election that was supposed to be concluded by 2pm had its results prepared even before commencement of voting.
“This is the worst form of rigging and it is unprecedented in the history of the state. There was no election. For somebody to have the audacity to write results, seven of us are asking the Independent Electoral Commission (INEC) to tell Nigerians if election was conducted.
“None of the officials of INEC and the panel led by Zamfara state governor Bello Matawalle came out,” he said.
He said Matawale was not happy with the sham and that was why he left midway.
“There is the party’s guideline that in the absence of the Chairman, that secretary should not announce result. What we had was allocation of votes. The purported winner is the Auditor General of Kogi state.
“We have no problem with the Governor but the level of his involvement. There was no election at all.
“It was supposed to be a direct primary, people were mobilised but there was no election.
“If the APC refuses to do what is right, it will be difficult for people to vote for the APC in Kogi.
“What happened was a betrayal of democracy. People were not allowed to vote, results were written. The election did not take place, but a grand plot to give the ticket to the candidate of the Governor who is first cousin.
“I want to call on the leadership of the party to avoid the collapse of the party. The tenets of Democracy is one man, one vote,” Adeyemi added.
Another contestant, Alhaji Shaibu Audu said he was at his Polling Unit where he waited till 6pm, indicating that there was no election materials, no INEC officials.
“It was a sham of a process, the election did not hold. I will like to appeal to the NWC to take a look at the sham that happened on April 14.
“I will like to call on the President elect and Vice President elect to take a look at it. It was a shame of a process and we don’t want it to stand.”
Deputy National Publicity Secretary of APC, Hon. Murtala Yakubu Ajaka said if the party was going to adopt a consensus they are supposed to bring everybody along.
“The people who did this have no character, I am sure that the NWC won’t allow it to happen. The people know their leaders, they know who they want.
“By next week, the leadership of the party will take a decision. The NWC will meet, they can’t present any name without the ratification of the NWC.
“We are standing on justice. We aren’t desperate to be Governor but we are desperate for our party to win. They are threatening people with treason, they are threatening to assassinate us.”
Professor Stephen Ocheni, a former minister and governorship aspirant, said results of an exam that did not take place were announced