APC Risks Not Fielding A Candidate, Concerned Stakeholders Warn

Some members of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Edo State on the auspices of Concerned Stakeholders, have raised the alarm that the party risked losing the forthcoming September 21 governorship election if the duly elected winner of the last Saturday’s governorship primary election, Senator Monday Okpebholo, was robbed of his victory.

The group also described as total brigandage the way and manner Governor Hope Uzodinma of Imo State, against all known guidelines and processes in conducting party primaries, went ahead to announce Hon. Dennis Idahosa as the winner of the exercise after the duly declaration of Okpebholo as the winner of the primaries.

They, therefore, called on President Bola Tinubu and APC National Chairman, Dr. Abdullahi Ganduje, to wade in immediately to ensure justice is done and save the party from imminent loss in the forthcoming Edo State governorship election.

Addressing journalists in Benin City on Tuesday, Counsel to the Concerned APC Stakeholders, Barrister Douglas Ogbankwa (Esq.), on behalf of the group, also condemned the violent brutalisation of members of the Nigerian Union Journalists (NUJ), who were at the venue of the primary election to carry out their constitutional responsibilities as the watchdog of the society.

The group noted, “The only recognised and recognisable Chief Returning Officer for the Edo 2024 Governorship Primaries appointed by the APC National Working Committee is Stanley Uzomaka Ugboaja. Gov. Hope Uzodinma was only a ceremonial chairman of the process.

“It does not behove on him to declare the results. Dr. Ugboaja declared the results as required by law and we are afraid that if any other candidate not declared by the Officer required by law is presented to INEC, the All Progressives Congress may not have a candidate for the Edo 2024 Governorship Election.

“This is because the process of the election of candidates is very technical and specific. Any slip that is generated by political expediency shall cost the APC dearly. This is the experience gleaned from judicial precedence on the score. There is a plethora of authorities, which are extant on this issue.

“We wish to state with untainted equanimity, that any other candidate being touted about as a purported candidate of the APC for the Edo 2024 Governorship Election, aside the duly returned candidate, Senator Monday Okpeholo, presupposes that APC does not have a Candidate in Edo State.

“It means that APC will be given the Rivers State and Zamfara States Treatments, which unfortunately are tied to the antics of the same man that is behind this charade, being attempted in Edo State. It was Mark Twain, the American Writer that said: ‘History does not repeat itself, at best it rhymes.’

“We humbly and passionately call on the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, His Excellency, President Bola Ahmed Tinubu and the National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress, H.E. Abdulahi Ganduje to do the right thing and endorse the legally returned Candidate as provided by the APC Constitution.

“We do not want the Binani Scenario as it was in Adamawa State, where the election was voided because the Returning Officer’s duties was hijacked by the Resident Electoral Officer, who is currently being prosecuted.”

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