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Tension mounts in Lagos ahead APC primaries


Observers say primaries is test of democratic credibility

akinwumi ambode

By John Eche


Tension is mounting in Lagos ahead of the forthcoming primaries to select chairmanship and councillorship nominees for the ruling all Progressives Party even as the countdown to the long-awaited local government polls in the state draws near.

According to observers, the primaries process would equally be a test on the democratic credentials of the party as well as its inclination to sustain unbridled intra-party democracy.

In one such expression, a group, the Asiwaju Progressive Minds, has petitioned the state governor, Mr Akinwunmi Ambode to not endorse the move to have ACN executives stand as delegates at APC Primaries.

According to a statement made available to The Difference, the group is faulting the action, claiming that it was inimical to the best expressions of democratic practice in Nigeria which the party ostensibly stands for.

The statement reads:

‘We, the entire members of the above named group across the six political wards of Ejigbo Local Council Development are stakeholders in the politics and economic development in the community and no amount of intimidation from any quarter will prevent us from expressing our freedom of expression most especially as it affects our political party in Ejigbo.

You may be aware, wards and Local Government Area executives in Ejigbo have been elected since 2009 before the merger of political parties that produced All Progressives Congress (APC) as formed on the 6th of February, 2013 and became a registered political party on the 31st of July, 2013. All attempts made by the party to organize another congress to elect other valid ward and LGA executives in the council as contained in the constitution of the party  were not successful due to an attempt of the former Chairman of the council, Hon Kehinde Bamigbetan to impose his loyalists just like he did in 2007 as executives. While other 56 LGA and LCDAs in Lagos organized congresses

and elected their executives early 2014, such never happened in Ejigbo. The implication of this is that, roles and activities as may be carried out by these executives appointed when the party was known as Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) are invalid and can be challenged in the court of law because they were elected by a non-existing entity.

It is no news, our party holds its Chairmanship and Councillorship primary elections on the 26th and 29th of May respectively. While we commend the initiative of the party to allow the first termers to run for second term unopposed and the magnanimity of leaders in some LGA/LCDAs that have been able to speak with one voice without necessarily going for primaries. We unequivocally condemn activities of the supposed leaders of the party in Ejigbo who decided to set up different caucuses instead of working as a formidable team in order to restore the lost glory of the party in the community.’

According to the group, the questions in the lips of concerned citizens and members of APC in Ejigbo LCDA are:

Do we have valid delegates to determine who becomes councillorship and chairmanship candidates in Ejigbo LCDA?

Why has it been difficult to organize successful congresses since 2013?

Why do we have Eight (8) different caucuses in the LCDA

Why do members of theses caucuses attach more importance to their group than the political party, herself.

Why has it been difficult for the supposed leaders of the party in the council to address issues of shameful failure at the last general elections since 2015.

Why as leaders at the state level not intervened in the issues of Ejigbo but allowed it to deteriorate to the level whereby enmity between caucuses is more gruesome than what exists between APC and PDP. Chief Ajomole rather created more problems by creating and diverting party money to sponsor his caucus (Crusader) that only exists in Ejigbo?

Why are the leaders of different caucuses chairmanship aspirants?

Why is Chief Ajomole trying to impose an aspirant from his caucus (Crusader) when he singlehandedly imposed his biological son (Ladi Ajomole) as candidate for House of Assembly and Hon Muniru as candidate for House of Representatives in 2015 and brought the party to shame with the colossal failure recorded by the party at the polls?

Why is Chief Ajomole requesting for chairmanship slot in Ejigbo as his retirement benefit when he is not in the civil service and does not live in the community?

Why is Chief Taiwo who brought his son who never lived in Ejigbo as Special Adviser in 2012 and same son as SOLE Administrator of Oshodi LGA trying to impose someone who was sacked as SLG due to his corrupt practices as Chairman of same council. We are aware he is also planning to impose his biological daughter as SLG. This is same man who belongs to GAC of the party, but does not live in Lagos and whose son recently contested under PDP in Ogun State. We are aware he belongs to PDP in Ogun State because he singlehandedly sponsored his son’s campaign activities under PDP in Ogun State?’

In making its point, it reached a certain conclusion: ‘To drive our points home, we like to inform you that all our members who were elected as ACN executives have been asked not to participate in the coming primaries. We hereby call on the state party leadership to conduct a fresh congress in Ejigbo whereby the new executives can participate as delegates during the coming primary elections or choose any of the three (3) neutral chairmanship aspirants as flag bearer to prevent the recurrence of 2015. Though we are strong members of APC, but we dissociate ourselves from the illegality of making executives of non-existing party as delegates of the existing political party in the coming primaries.

The statement which was signed by Alfred Adeosun, the LGA Coordinator of the group was copied to the National Leader of APC, State Chairman of APC, the Lagos House of Assembly, the State Executive Committee and the State Electoral Committee



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