Romanus Ugwu, Abuja
The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has confirmed that no fewer than 123 candidates have won the party primaries to contest the Movrmber 16, Bayelsa and Kogi states governorship elections.
The statistics from the electoral commission, detailing the primaries conducted in the two states, released yesterday, revealed that while 59 candidates will contest for the Kogi State poll, 64 will vie for the governorship election in Bayelsa.
The documents equally disclosed that while some candidates emerged through direct, indirect or consensus mode of primaries, many others were picked unopposed through what the commission described as single candidate by affirmation.
According to the documents, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Kogi State fielded higher number of aspirants numbering 13 while 10 aspirants contested on the platform of the All Progressives Congress.
Among those that contested the primary poll that Wada Musa emerged winner include Abubakar Mohammad, Wada Idris, Dino Melaye, Mohammed Shuaib, Aminu Abubakar Suleiman, Erico Ameh Joseph, Victor Adejoh Alewo among others.
Describing the emergence of Governor Yahaya Bello through an open secret ballot in an indirect primary, it named other aspirants as Babatunde Irukera, Hassan Abdullahi, Hadiza Iyoma Ibrahim, Yahaya Odidi Audu, Sani Lulu Abdullahi among others.
Among the six aspirants, according to the Electoral Management Board (EMB) that contested the Bayelsa primary on the platform of the APC where Lyon David emerged with 42,138 votes, included Diseye Poweigha, Prince Ebitimi Amgbare and former Minister of State for Agriculture, Heineken Lokpobiri.
The document revealed that the PDP which conducted indirect primaries has the greatest number of aspirants numbering over 21, confirming that Senator Douye Diri, emerged the party candidate.
However, in a footnote by the INEC’s Director of Voter Education and Publicity, Oluwole Osaze-Uzzi, the commission pointed out that parties may chose not to sponsor any candidate even after conducting the primaries.
“For purposes of clarity and avoidance of any ambiguity, the lists are not the list of candidates contesting the respective governorship elections! As stated in the heading, they are the result of the political party primaries monitored by the Commission.”