Transparency and democratic primaries are fundamental for the choice of governorship candidates by the all progressive congress (APC) in Edo and Ondo State, it was learnt yesterday
At a meeting with nine APC governors in attendance, the National leader of the APC, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu said democratic primary as a core element of internal democracy should not be shunned.
A source at the meeting held at the State House, Marina, Lagos, said Tinubu laid emphasis on the importance of conducting primaries, he went further to admonish party leaders to preserve and safeguard the primary process in the preparation for the right choice of standard bearers.
The Progressive Governor’s forum, led by kebbi State Governor, Atiku Bagudu, disclosed plans last week to mount pressure on his Excellency, President Muhammadu Buhari to support their push for right of first refusal to two of their colleagues, Ondo State Rotimi Akeredolu (SAN) and Edo State Governor Godwin Obaseki, for the governorship.
The polls which will hold in Edo and Ondo State are slated to take place in September and October respectively. No fewer than 10 Chieftains are competing for the ticket in Ondo, with APC’s Akeredolu seeking a 2nd term.
In Edo, other contenders have stepped down for Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu, who is challenging Obaseki at the shadow poll.
The National Working Committee (NWC) last week announced that the primary system will be adopted for the Edo APC shadow poll.
The Governors in attendance include Bagudu, Obaseki, Akeredolu, Simon Lalong (Plateau), Abdullahi Ganduje (Kano), Mai Buni(Yobe), Adegboyega Oyetola(Osun), Abubakar Bello(Niger) and Babajide Sanwo-Olu (Lagos), who was the host.
Specifically, the Governors wanted Tinubu to prevail on the party leadership to give Obaseki the right of first refusal, the source said.
However, Tinubu held the belief that it is better, more democratic and constitutionally right that all aspirants go for primaries to test their popularity, he further added that, through this process, the ruling party will successfully build a strong democratic culture.