Why indirect primary may lead to crisis in Ogun State APC – Osoba

A former governor of Ogun State, Segun Osoba, on Wednesday kicked against the indirect primaries the All Progressives Congress (APC) approved for the state chapter saying the party should go for direct primaries.

The ruling party on Tuesday released guidelines for the conduct of primaries for its state chapters after months of controversy. While it approved direct primaries for some, it allowed others to conduct the exercise through indirect primaries.

Mr Osoba stated his position while addressing the party’s governorship, National Assembly and state assembly aspirants at his Government Reservation Area (GRA), Abeokuta residence.

Mr Osoba said it was constitutional to follow the decision of the party’s National Working Committee, ”which earlier embraced direct primaries for elective positions ahead of 2019 general elections”.

Governorship aspirants at the meeting include: Gbenga Kaka, Dapo Abiodun, Jimi Lawal and Abayomi Hunye.

Mr Osoba warned against the danger of going into an election ”with a divided house”, noting that division among the aspirants would not augur well for the success of the party at the polls.

He cited the case of the Osun State governorship election which held last Saturday noting that the division in the state chapter of the party, led to its almost poor performance, ”which warranted a rerun”.

“Let us learn from Osun State election. People voted for the candidate who never participated in any debate, never spoke at any of the campaign rallies. But the things the electorate consider before they cast their ballot have changed. When we were governors, myself and my colleagues had pedigree and substance.

“We, (APC) went into that election (Osun ) divided. A divided house will crumble. The deputy speaker (Lasun Yusuf) was nonchalant and the SSG went into another party,” Mr Osoba said.

“In Ogun State, it is necessary to preach unity. Primary is just the first step, to win election, the party must unite. I am begging you today to learn from what happened in Osun State. I was born in Osogbo. All factions must close ranks and be united as long as we are all members of APC. We must not make any mistake which other political parties could exploit.

“You could remember that Rotimi Amaechi became the Governor of River State, without going through any election, and there are other members of the National Assembly who got there through court judgments,” he said.

He also appealed to members of the party to vote for President Muhammadu Buhari in the direct primary slated for Friday.

Other political leaders at the event include: chairman Board of Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation, Akin Odunsi; Ogun Central senatorial aspirant, Ganiyu Hamzat; House of Representatives aspirant from Yewa South/Ipokia federal constituency, Ayo Olubori; and House of Representatives aspirant from Yewa North/Imeko-Afon, Temitope Kuyebi, among others .

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