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Benue APC guber aspirants want primary cancelled

By Joseph Wantu, Makurdi
28 June 2022   |   2:42 am
Some All Progressives Congress (APC) gubernatorial aspirants in the recent party primaries in Benue State have called for the cancellation of the exercise.

APC (All Progressive Congress) Flag (Photo by Kola Sulaimon / AFP)

Some All Progressives Congress (APC) gubernatorial aspirants in the recent party primaries in Benue State have called for the cancellation of the exercise.

This is even as the appeal panel for primaries in the state told the APC leadership that the party has failed.

While making their submissions before the panel, the aspirants called for the cancellation of the governorship primary, faulting the exercise.

The aggrieved aspirants include former Minister of Justice, Mike Aondoakaa; former National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Sen. Barnabas Gemade and Prof. Terhemen Shija.

Chairman of the Governorship Primary Election Committee, Peter Ojie, had earlier declared Rev. Fr. Hyacinth Alia as the winner of the election conducted by direct primary.

The appeal panel, which commenced sitting yesterday in Makurdi, also heard petitions filed by the gubernatorial aspirants, who described the process as an aberration, insisting that the primary did not hold.

Shija stated: “The primary election is a sham, a charade, an aberration and should not be allowed to stand.”

Aondoakaa, on his part, insisted that justice must be served by cancelling the election, adding that there should be free, fair and transparent APC primary.

He lamented that the party treated them shabbily, despite that they had been funding the party.

“When it was time to fund the party, the leader (George Akume) asked Gemade, Dr. Matthias Ibuan and I to do so. We taxed ourselves to fund the ward, local council and state congresses.

“Then, someone, who wasn’t even part of the process, was smuggled in and they manufactured votes for him. We feel humiliated and cheated. We demand justice. Let the right thing be done. Let there be free, fair and transparent primaries in APC in Benue,” he added.

On his part, Gemade argued: “We are all members of this party and we really want it to be a winning party; not an opposition party. The only way it may become a winning party here is if things are done properly. There is still a window to do things properly now that the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has extended the time to July 6 and 7.”

Reacting to the allegations, Chairperson of the Appeals Panel, Uzoama Onyema, stated that the APC leadership in the state failed to conduct a just and fair primary.

She said: “Benue APC Publicity Secretary, take this message to your chairman; you people have failed us. I wish you all what you wish yourselves. If you wish to do injustice, you will fail; if you wish to do good, you get good. It is up to you, whether you want to win this state or you want to lose it.”

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