A group of aspirants in the just concluded ward congress of the All Progressives Congress, APC, in Yobe have decried mass disenfranchisement and demanded for another congress.
Adamu Yaro, former state Youth Leader of the party and spokesman for the aspirants, put forward their demand while addressing newsmen in Damaturu on Monday .
He said about 1,000 aspirants paid for nomination forms in a bank account as directed by the party, but were denied the nomination forms.
“The nomination forms were issued to few selected favored candidates, while majority of those who paid for the forms in a designated bank account as provided in the congress guidelines, were denied.
“The party claimed to have conducted a purported congress affirming those it provided with the forms and produced them as ward leaders, while majority of the aspirants were denied participation in the exercise,” Yaro alleged.
The spokesman said the committee mandated to conduct the congress arrived Damaturu with the nomination forms and other election materials at about 9 p.m. on Friday, less than 24 hours to the election, contravening the congress guidelines.
The aspirants alleged that “the conditions and provisions of the congress guidelines were flagrantly abused and breached, rendering the purported election, null and void.”
They cautioned that lack of internal democracy, imposition of candidates and party executives, would affect the party’s fortunes in the state, and therefore called for redress.
The APC secretary in the state, Abubakar Bakabe, however dismissed the claims, saying, “none of those who claimed to have paid for the forms approached me for collection of the forms.”
“The delegates from the national headquarters came with result sheets, summary forms as well as additional nomination and delegates forms,” he said.
Abubakar said the aggrieved persons were looking for straight election against affirmation, “but for lack of time and resources, we opted for affirmation and replacement of existing vacancies.”
He advised them to forward their complaints to the congress appeal committee for redress.
“The party did not impose anyone on the people; it is more of elongating the tenure of the existing structure through affirmation by the congress, than imposition,” the secretary insisted.