Romanus Ugwu, Abuja and Bamigbola Gbolagunte,Akure
Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has said the All Progressives Congress (APC) may not participate in the October governorship election in Ondo State.
The commission said it does not honour the letter sent by the APC notifying it of the conduct of its primary in Ondo State.
In a letter entitled: “Re-Notice of conduct of primary,” addressed to the APC national chairman and signed by the commission Secretary, Rose Oriaran-Anthony, INEC observed that only the acting national secretary of the APC signed the letter notifying it of its primary in Ondo State.
“The commission notes that your notice scheduling the conduct of APC governorship primary on July 20 was signed by only the acting national secretary of the party.
“This is contrary to the provision of Article 4.4 of the commission’s regulations and guidelines for the conduct of party primary which requires that such notices shall be jointly signed by the national chairman and national secretary of political party.
“Accordingly, your party is advised to issue appropriate notice for the conduct of its Ondo State governorship primary in line with relevant provisions of the regulations and guidelines for the conduct of party’s primary,” INEC said.
Meanwhile, the campaign organisation of an aspirant, Olaide Adelami, has raised the alarm over alleged plot to forcefully use local government chairmen to discredit Adelami membership.
The campaign team, in a statement, yesterday in Abuja and signed by Segun Ogodo, urged APC national leadership and the presidency to disregard what is described as ‘campaign of calumny’ against its principal.
“We hereby call on APC leadership, the presidency and members of our party to disregard this malicious and fallacious harassment,” it said in the statement.
Regardless, about 26 associations, on the platform of Unity Forum, have purchased expression of interest and nomination forms for Olusola Oke, for the governorship election.
Speaking during the formal presentation of the forms to him in Abuja, the party chieftain boasted that only Oke possess the magic wand to stop APC from sliding into opposition.
“Let me thank God that brought this mission to fruition. About few days ago, leaders of the Unity Forum and other 26 associations raised N22.5 million to enable me purchase these forms. They also travelled to Abuja to collect the forms themselves. I thank the leadership of Unity Forum for this honour done to me and assure all that my candidature will bring the APC together in Ondo State,” Oke said.