Ekiti APC Primary: Aspirants condemn violence, calls for fresh exercise

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Governorship aspirants in the suspended Ekiti All Progressives Congress, APC, primary, united on Sunday to demand for a fresh conduct of the exercise, saying the botched Saturday primary election was compromised.

Speaking on behalf of 26 other aspirants after an emergency meeting in Ado-Ekiti, Dr (Mrs) Mojisola Yaya-Kolade said aspirants in attendance agreed that the previous exercise cannot proceed for lacking integrity.

“We condemn what happened in Ekiti yesterday; we are shocked about the disarray that happened in that stadium.

“It is not what we expected for our state. The quality of the ballot papers was not intact, nobody can really see the faces of the aspirants’ faces very well; the security was porous as if there was poor preparation and a lot of problems,” she said.

“We are therefore suggesting that a fresh exercise be conducted within a space of 72 hours in view of the urgency it required.

The aspirants went ahead to proffer far-reaching measures that are expected to guarantee the peaceful conduct of the requested process; among which are the demand for a new set of organisers comprising people of integrity to organise the fresh exercise while accreditation of delegates and voting should hold in an enclosed hall.

In addition, the contenders frowned at monetisation of the voting system and camping of delegates, saying “we condemn camping; we don’t want people to be camped in Ekiti again.”

They appealed that there should be no bias against any aspirant to forestall a free, fair and credible.

“We are expressing that government should not be biased against any candidate. Everything should be free, fair and transparent.

“No secretion by any aspirant will be allowed. There should be impartiality by the security personnel on what goes on in the venue, wherever the venue would be.

“We should respect the secrecy of ballot papers. Accreditation should be done at one time; one person at a time and it should be conducted according to senatorial districts,” she said.

She went on to express the hope that the party in the state would provide feeding and transportation for delegates coming from all local government areas in the state, not individual aspirant.

The aspirant also demanded that no delegate should be allowed to leave their seat once accreditation began in the new arrangements.

They also called for better ballot paper, sample of which should be displayed at the entrance of the venue to prevent confusion and assist delegates to identify their aspirants.

For further credibility of the fresh exercise, request was made for strict issuance of tags and proper identification of personnel while insisting that no aspirant should be entitled to more than one agent in the voting hall.

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Yaya-Kolade disclosed that all the 33 aspirants that took part in the botched primary were invited, out of which 27 attended while the rest five stayed away.

She expressed confidence that with the number of aspirants that showed up for the meeting, there was fair representation to proceed with the meeting and make their stand public.

Among those present at the meeting were former governor, Engr Segun Oni; Special Adviser to the President on Political Matters, Senator Babafemi Ojudu;  Hon. Bimbo Daramola, Mr. Kayode Ojo, Hon. Femi Bamisile, Kola Alabi, Oluwole Oluleye, Muyiwa Olunilua, among others.

Visibly absent at the meeting are the Minister of Mines and Steel Development, Dr. Kayode Fayemi, Hon. Opeyemi Bamidele, Sen. Gbenga Aluko.

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