All Progressives Congress’ stakeholders in Kogi State have called on the National Working Committee of the APC to ensure that the party’s candidate for the November 16 governorship election in the state emerges from a direct primary poll.
The stakeholders made the call at a meeting attended by 17 out of the 20 governorship aspirants in Abuja on Monday.
Addressing reporters after the meeting, Senator Alex Kadiri said they decided to come together following reports an “illegal committee” loyal to Governor Yahaya Bello was planning to use an indirect primary election to pick the party’s candidate for the polls.
He said, “We want to reiterate that APC Kogi State is divided, because of the division we went to court. The case is still in court and we have not been able to fast-track the judgment like the one in Zamfara State.
“What Governor Yahaya Bello and his people are doing now are all illegal because the committee they are working with has no legal standing.
“But as we are preparing for the primary, we want it known that we the leaders of the APC and the 20 aspirants of our party are opposed to Yahaya Bello’s contrived method of doing the primary.
“He cannot be a judge of himself, this is irresponsible. We are saying that the Kogi State primary must be a direct primary where all members of the party from all the local government areas will choose who they want as their candidate.”
The stakeholders warned that the party could lose the state to the opposition with Bello as its candidate, claiming the governor was not popular in the state.
The group said, “We have tried to bend over backwards to accommodate Yahaya Bello. This is a man who after losing the 2015 primary abandoned the party and we have evidence that he actually worked for the PDP in that election. But because of the death of Alhaji Abubakar Audu, he was posted to Kogi as sole administrator to the state government.”