The Segun Oni Campaign Organisation has called on the National Working Committee (NWC) of the All Progressives Congress to investigate the alleged compromise of the Tanko Al-Makura-led committee which supervised Saturday’s primary in Ekiti State.
The organisation says the committee’s actions led to the disruption of the primaries of the APC.
Mr Oni, a former governor of Ekiti State and the Deputy National Chairman of the party, is one of the 33 aspirants seeking the APC ticket for the governorship election slated for July 14.
A statement by the organisation, signed by its Director General, Ife Arowosoge, said some lapses were observed in the conduct of the exercise.
“It was alleged that the nomination of the secretary to the committee was influenced by his close relationship with one of the aspirants,” the statement said.
“This led to a protest by the other aspirants which they expressed at a meeting with the Primary Election Committee. Despite the promise of his removal by the chairman of the committee, he still actively participated in all the processes of the election.
“It was also observed that contrary to the standard rules guiding the conduct of primaries whereby only one agent of an aspirant and accredited delegates are allowed into the venue of the election, many associates and aides of this same aspirant were issued tags as observers and allowed into the venue.
“Their presence constituted a nuisance of significant proportion while they willfully interfered with the voting process,” the organisation added.
Mr Arowosoge alleged that some security operatives appeared to have been compromised, and “when this was pointed out to the organising committee, no decisive action was taken.”
“The situation eventually degenerated to protest by some of the delegates which led to the eventual disruption and abortion of the electoral process. Delegates from Eleven (11) Local Government Areas walked out without voting in protest.
“Evidence of the lackadaisical attitude of the security operatives was well captured in a video that has since gone viral in the social media. Given their presence, it is hard to believe that an individual could proceed to scatter the ballot boxes to the consternation of the delegates.
“Clearly, aspirants and delegates have since lost confidence in the Al-Makura Primary election Committee.”
It also listed its requests to the NWC.
“Our prayers are as follows: The conduct of the primary by the Al-Makura Committee should be thoroughly investigated by the National Working Committee to determine the extent of their involvement and compromise of the process.
“The NWC will need to provide a renewed assurance and confidence that the primary can be conducted transparently, honourably and creditably without any bias and without any favour.”
However, the organisation appealed to all the delegates to maintain calm and “continue with their support for Mr Oni.”
Meanwhile, the Kayode Fayemi Campaign Organisation has issued a warning to the organising committee not to annul the process and the votes already cast in Saturday’s botched election.
The organisation threatened that it might seek legal redress if the committee decides to completely annul the process.
Samuel Abejide, who was the agent of Mr Fayemi, had claimed the other aspirants disrupted the primaries because “they were already losing in the number of votes cast so far.”
“They sensed that Mr Fayemi was leading and they were not comfortable and decided to disrupt the election,” he said.
He added that it appeared the security operatives were compromised because “those who disrupted the process were allowed to go free.”