APC Refuses To Be Pressured To Adopting Indirect Primaries
The governing All Progressives Congress (APC) yesterday said it refuses to be pressured by its governors and their state chairmen into adopting indirect primaries as means of electing its flag bearers for 2019 election.
This is as disagreement rose over the adoption of direct /indirect primaries.
While some support President Muhammadu Buhari, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole, the party’s National Chairman and Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, a National Leader of the party and head of its reconciliation committee to adopt direct primaries, most of the governors led by Governor Rochas Okorocha of Imo State and head of the APC Governors’ Forum, prefer indirect primaries.
Prof. Itse Sagay (SAN), Chairman of the Presidential Advisory Committee Against Corruption (PACAC), had also advised the party leadership to concede to the governors’ demand, saying the party cannot afford to go to war with the state governors who are critical stakeholders in the party with just few weeks to the general election.
However, speaking with Daily Independent yesterday spokesman of the party, Yekini Nabena, said the party is still holding on to the decision reached at the last National Executive Council (NEC) meeting.
“No, we have not yielded to the governors on indirect primaries. The states will go and bring their reports and the National Working Committee will take a look at it.
“We will want to know why they want indirect primary instead of the direct primary that we decided upon. Because it is only when there is logistics challenges like we agreed on at the NEC meeting.
“Not that people will just go and do a kangaroo meeting and come to say that they have agreed on indirect primaries. The NWC will take a critical look at it with the State Executive Committee before accepting”, he said.
Also speaking, Prince Tony Momoh, a former Minister of Information and a National Leader of the APC, said there is no war between the governors and the APC leadership over the use of direct primaries.
He said, “There is no pressure or any war. There is no problem. People are just interpreting the issue in different ways.
“Let me tell you what was decided at the NEC meeting. We said we are going to have direct primaries for the presidential election and we also said that we are going to have direct primaries for all other elections unless where, because of the issue, indirect primary takes place.
“For us to accept indirect primary, the stakeholders within the area where indirect primary will take place will meet and decide that they want indirect primary. They will then write to the National Working Committee (NWC) which will now approve it.
“If the governors or state chairmen are holding meetings, they are not plotting against the party. They will be holding meeting to decide why it should not be direct primary. Because the state chairmen are stakeholders, if they decide why it should not be direct primary, they will package their decisions and send to the headquarters. Then the headquarters will look at and say okay, you can have indirect primary.
“There is no threat from the governors to Oshiomhole. Why should they threaten him? They are loyal members of the party and the governors are the ones who are in charge of the states. They are the ones who know where the shoe pinches. They are the ones who will advise why there shouldn’t be direct primaries in their states. So, how can they decide if there will be no indirect primaries without meeting with the stakeholders?” Momoh queried
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