By Sunday Ani, Lagos
Members of the All Progressives Congress (APC) from Somolu Local Government Area of Lagos State on Saturday evening staged a peaceful protest at the party’s secretariat on Acme Road, over what they called ‘the illegal and unjustified cancellation of the APC primaries in Somolu LGA.’
In a protest letter addressed to the state chairman of the party, Mr Tunde Balogun, and Dr Obafemi Hamzat, Head of Local Government Election Committee of the APC, they alleged that the ‘illegal and unlawful cancellation of the primaries’ in the local government came as a rude shock.
Part of the letter jointly signed by 20 party members in Somolu and made available to the Daily Sun, read:
‘It is on record today that there was no news of violence in any of the eight wards in Somolu LGA.
‘Our insistence that the council secretariat should not be used for distribution and collation of the primaries materials and results that had been previously diverted and hijacked by an aspirant and his co-travellers, but rather the Secretariat of the APC on 172 Ikorodu Road, Somolu, should be used because it would be a neutral ground and would give zero advantage to all interests, did not go down well with the aspirant.
‘Our fears and suspicion of foul play by the aspirant was confirmed when some of the ballot boxes that were meant for the primaries were later found to have been hidden in a corner in the council secretariat and were retrieved in the presence of the Area Commander and his team.
‘One of the cintestants categorically stated that if the local government secretariat is not used for the distribution and collation of materials and results, the election will be cancelled. The returning officer for the primaries publicly admitted that the result sheets for the chairmanship primaries were not included in the materials given to them from the state secretariat.’
The protesters alleged that true to the words of the candidate, the scheduled primary election for Somolu LGA was cancelled despite the fact that there was no record of violence.
They demanded to know whether the candidate in question is greater than the party wherein he can frustrate the right of the people to vote in the existing peaceful atmosphere in Somolu to decide their choice for the next chairman of the LGA.
They urged the party leadership to reschedule the chairmanship and councillorship primaries in the LGA with adequate security provided in all the eight wards.