Strong indications have emerged of the plot to disqualify one of the All Progressives Congress aspirants, Abdul-Ahmed Mustapha by the screening committee of the party.
Allegations are that Governor Babajide Sanwoolu is making frantic efforts to get Mustapha out of the way through disqalification, thereby frustrate the clandestine moves of some powerful forces to deny the governor a second term.
Sources at the national party secretariat alleged that heavy transactions are ongoing to swing the national chairman to play to the script.
To collaborate the allegation, a member of Mustapha’s campaign organisation confirmed to this medium that they are aware of every efforts by some elements suspected to be working for the governor to get their candidate out of the primary election saying ‘ we have instructed our lawyers to file a petition to the national secretariat”
Insiders in Lagos APC politics are said to have tagged Governor Sanwoolu as GAC candidate while the political leaders at local government claim that they have their own candidate.
In the same vein, civil society has raised allegation of power corrupt in constituting a primary election with questionable and partisan members.
The group identified as All Progressives Congress Professionals for Change, has rejected the committee inaugurated by the leadership of the APC in Lagos to conduct the National Assembly, Governorship and House of Assembly primaries in the state, alleging that the composition of the committee does not reflect a level-playing ground for all the contestants, a statement issued said.
The Chairman of APC in Lagos State, Cornelius Ojelabi, had on Monday inaugurated the committee which is to be headed by the APC Zonal Organising Secretary, Lateef Ibirogba, but the All Progressives Congress Professionals for Change flayed the state chapter of the party for setting up the committee saying it is a usurpation of the functions of the national body which is constitutionally empowered to perform such duties.
The other members of the committee include Olayinka Oladunjoye, Bola Badmus-Olujobi, Hakeem Odumosu, Gbolahan Idris, Adebayo Sanwo-Olu, Sodiq Ademola, Oluremi Shopeyin and Muritala Seriki.
However, the group alleged that many individuals in the committee have strong ties with some of the contestants and allowing them to play the role of umpires could jeopardise the interest of other aspirants in the race.
The National President of the group Hakeem Ogunsanya wondered why an elder brother of Governor Babajide Sanwoolu would be named to the committee that will conduct an election in which his sibling will participate.
He said allowing the committee, as presently constituted, to conduct the election could taint the integrity of the exercise which could ultimately affect the chances of the party at the poll.
He wondered why the state chapter of the party would be the one to set up the committee without the input of the national body, saying such a move is against the constitution of APC and shouldn’t be allowed to stand so that a bad precedent wouldn’t be set which could lead to further chaos in the party.
“The composition of the committee shows the desperation of some aspirants to subvert the process in their own interest. We have some elements in that committee who have close ties with some of the aspirants. It beats my imagination that our great party in the state would appoint the elder brother of the Governor to the committee that will conduct an election in which he is a contestant; this is like taking impunity to another level, what signal are we giving to other aspirants in the race? This is an aberration that shouldn’t be allowed to stand.
“Our concerns are to protect the integrity of our party and the process; it shouldn’t be the business of the state chapter of the party to set up primaries committee, it is an obligation constitutionally reserved for the national body. If we allow this aberration to scale through, we would be creating problems for the future because other states may want to copy that which will lead to further chaos,” he said.
However, the group charged the national leadership of the party to dissolve the Ibirogba-led committee and reconstitute another one that will reflect the neutrality in fairness to all aspirants.
“We in the All Progressives Congress Professionals for Change are calling on the National Chairman of our great party, Senator Abdullahi Adamu to take the bull by the horn and prevent the party from falling into a trap by exercising his powers to constitute a fresh primary committee according to the constitution of our party,” he said.