Lagos APC Guber Aspirants Oppose Use of Delegates List, Demands Direct Primaries
Ahead of the All Progressives Congress primary election eant to elect a candidate that will fly party’s flag for the 2015 general election in Lagos state, 11 governorship aspirants under the platform of the party today submitted a letter to the National Leadership of the party as well as the party chairman in the state demanding that primary elections be held through direct primaries as against delegates based indirect primaries which is already a subject of litigation at a Federal High Court in Ikoyi, Lagos.
Abusidiqu had reported earlier that the 11 aspirants held a meeting yesterday at the Protea Hotel in Lagos, same time the party’s national Leader, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu held a meeting with the state’s party executives at his bourdilon residence with thousands of dollars distributed to woo delegates in favour of his anointed candidate, Akinwumi Ambode.
The aspirants including Senate Minority Whip, Senator Ganiyu Olanrewaju Solomon, Speaker of the state House of Assembly, Hon Adeyemi Ikuforiji, the state Commissioner for Works, Dr Femi Kadri Hamzat, former Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice Olasupo Shasore, SAN, former Commissioner for Rural Dev Dr Tola Kasali and Mr Tokunbo Wahab among others stated in their letter, the content of which was agreed on after their meeting at Protea Hotel, Ikoyi yesterday, the delegates list the party is trying to use to conduct the primary is based on the 57 council areas in Lagos whereas the Nigerian constitution recognises only 20.
They argue that if the party goes ahead to use the delegates list, the party might lose the chance of presenting a governorship candidate in Lagos for the 2015 election because of the likelihood that the suit already filed in court by two members of the party could lead to the nullification of the primary election outcome. The text of the letter is reproduced below:
Communiqué of Meeting of Lagos Governorship Aspirants 2014
Following the screening completion exercise of 1st December 2014 the aspirants for Governor of Lagos State in the forthcoming 2015 elections agreed to convene a meeting to discuss matters of mutual concern.
We now write to bring to your attention matters considered and agreed to at this meeting.
At the meeting we:
Affirmed the supremacy of our great party – the All Progressives Congress party and its constitution;
Brought attention to bear on the need for our party to be gravely concerned and for the party to reserve further action with respect to the recently released guidelines for the upcoming Lagos Party Primaries and the legality of the indirect primaries as it relates to the the INEC regulations 2014; Electoral Act 2010 and the constitution our party;
Evaluated the Ward Congress elections held earlier in the year were conducted based on 20Local Government Areas (LGAs) and 37 Local Council Development Areas (LCDAs) making a total of 57.
Noted our current Party Constitution states that the “Local Governments (LGs) shall be defined as listed in the 1999 Nigerian Constitution” which for Lagos State is listed as 20 LGAs
Considered the concern that the conceived indirect primaries ( as presently constituted ) could lead to agitation tension and litigation and may even ultimately deprive the party from presenting a valid candidate for the general election in February 2015.
Reflected on the recently served court papers filed by two party members in Lagos against the party INEC and all the governorship aspirants today (1st day of December, 2014.)
Following these considerations we recommend :
Party leadership should immediately review the scheduled indirect primaries scheduled to commence 2 December and particularly the 4 December 2014 – with a view to its suspension
Our party should seek Special Consideration to conduct Direct Primaries rather than the Indirect Delegate-based Primaries
And / or
Commence consensus building exercise amongst all aspirants in order to effect a smooth affirmation of candidates
We believe that both direct primaries and consensus building can be concluded within the INEC timetable
We also respectfully seek a meeting with the party leadership no later than 6pm Tuesday 2nd December 2014 to discuss the above recommendations.
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