The National Chairman of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), Comrade Adams Oshiomhole, says the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) is in haste to conclude that his party will not field candidates for 2019 general elections in Zamfara State.
Oshiomhole, in a letter addressed to INEC Chairman, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, said the commission ought to have inquired from the APC leadership before taking a position that was devoid of legal basis.
“As a party, we are in the process of exhausting those internal procedures before forwarding the names of our candidates to you. We are perplexed that you did not wait for us to submit the names of our candidates in Zamfara State (considering that the time within which such submission should take place has not elapsed) before raising your observation in your letter under reference.
“This is more so when we received no correspondence from the Commission at least to inquire from our party the true state of affairs in Zamfara State, in the spirit of fair hearing, before making haste to write your letter. We, however note that the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) did not also hold primaries in Kano, but no such similar letter was written to the PDP in relation to Kano State.
“It is our contention, in the circumstance, that your letter is not only pre-emptive, but your position seems to negate the spirit of any fair hearing and is devoid of legal basis.
“Be informed, (emphasis by the party) that in the spirit of due compliance with the law, we affirm that we shall indeed be presenting candidates for Governorship, National Assembly and State Assembly Elections in Zamfara State for the 2019 General elections before the deadline for submission of such names which has been fixed by your Commission on the 18th of October, 2018 and in line with section 87 (6) of the Electoral Act, 2010 (as amended).
“If you raise further observations after you receive our list of candidates, we shall be glad to clarify them.
According to the electoral body, the decision was taken as a result of the failure of the party to elect its candidates within the stipulated period in accordance with the electoral act.
Recall that the sacked leadership of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Zamfara State returned Alhaji Mukhtar Shehu Idris as winner of last Wednesday’s botched governorship primary election in the state.
The National Working Committee (NWC) of the party had announced the dissolution of Zamfara APC exco led by Alhaji Lawali M. Liman.
But the embattled Liman, who insisted he remained the chairman of the party, had also declared Governor Abdulaziz Yari as winner of Zamfara West senatorial zone’s primary election in the state, who he said had scored 166,610 votes.
Alhaji Liman said the state government-backed Shehu Idris polled 310,380 votes to clinch the governorship ticket of the party; while Senator Kabiru Marafa, a member of the G8 fighting Governor Yari, came second with only 54,607 votes.
He said the other governorship contenders scored votes as follows: Alhaji Mahmuda Aliyu Shinkafi 5,514; Deputy Governor Ibrahim Wakkala Muhammad 517; Alhaji Sagir Hamidu Gusau 102; Alhaji Aminu Sani Jaji 12,039; Alhaji Abu Magaji 340; Alhaji Dauda Lawal Dare 5,396; and Brigadier General Mansur Dan Ali (rtd) 292 votes.
However, the Major General Abubakar Mustapha Gana-led Zamfara State Electoral Committee, said the results announced by Alhaji Liman could not stand, adding that they would submit their report to the national headquarters that there was no primaries in Zamfara.