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…Dismiss Uba’s petition -Madu
From Romanus Ugwu, Abuja
The All Progressives Congress (APC) Anambra governorship primary appeal committee submitted its report to the party’s National Working Committee (NWC) yesterday.
While submitting the report to the party’s National Organising Secretary, Senator Ostia Izunaso, at the party’s national secretariat, the committee’s secretary, Dr. Nosa Aladeselu, revealed that the committee received petitions from several aspirants demanding the cancelation of the August 26 party primary.
Speaking with journalists after submitting the report, Aladeselu said “a number of persons submitted petitions and also a good number representing our party members from Anambra State also made personal appearances. We also had situations where some groups that did not come, submitted affidavits of their understanding of what they observed to the committee.
“What we have in this report is a collection of those complaints and responses. After reviewing the petitions from our members at the primaries, we also invited officials and other stakeholders indicted by the petitioners and key persons whose responses were key to our reports.
“The report also includes the analysis of the petition, our understanding of the statement by the witnesses and our recommendations to the NWC to decide on the final outcome in their own wisdom,” Aladeselu said.
Meanwhile, one of the spirants who participated in the primary, Nonso Madu, has dismissed the petition from Senator Andy Uba, which called for the cancelation of the primary over irregularities.
Madu in a statement said: “My attention has been drawn to a petition written by Senator Andy Uba and addressed to the governorship primaries appeal committee of the APC. I had earlier expressed disbelief when an online publication reported that Uba was putting pressure on members of the committee to annul the primary election. I had doubted the authenticity of the report, due to the way he commended the entire process while voting was ongoing and gave assurance that he was going to emerge victorious.
“After seeing the petition, I must say that I am unimpressed that our distinguished Senator would tarnish an exercise that was painstakingly organised by the Governor Kassim Shettima-led electoral panel and adjudged to be the best so far conducted.
“In the petition, Uba accused Nwoye of bringing thugs into the accreditation venue to chase away delegates. This is not true as the accreditation was conducted peacefully. Delegates were identified through their Permanent voters Card (PVC), National ID card, driver’s license or International passport.
“They also came with their party membership slip with photograph issued to them by the party during registration. The party had already made the delegates list available to all aspirants two weeks before the primaries. With the delegates known, there was little room for manipulation. The Nigerian police force led by Anambra State Police Commissioner, Umar Garba, the DSS and other security agencies provided adequate security at the accreditation venue, making it nearly impossible for the venue to be infiltrated by thugs.
“The allegation that delegates were swapped is simply laughable. After accreditation, delegates were conveyed to the voting center in marked buses with full police escort. There was no room for any manoeuvre as the delegates had no physical contact with outsiders. The road leading to the voting venue was not even accessible to commuters and other road users, as it was cordoned off by security agencies, making it impossible for any non-accredited person to gain entrance to the venue.
“Most importantly, during voting, once a local government was called, the various ward chairmen were called to vote first, and then line up in front of the hall to identify delegates from their ward who then proceed to cast votes. The allegation of presence of thugs at the venue is untrue, except if Senator Uba is now referring to genuine APC members as thugs simply because they did not vote for him.
“Uba also alleged that some delegates have gone to court to depose to affidavits on what transpired. Our party leaders should note that this tactics was used in 2013 to scuttle the ambition of Nwoye after he defeated the same people in a primary televised live on national TV. The litigation went all the way to the Supreme Court and by the time judgment was delivered, Nwoye had just 10 days to campaign. Despite the short time left for him to campaign, he still came second in the general elections”.