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INEC writes Oshiomhole as issues in Zamfara APC worsen



– INEC has stopped Zamfara state chapter of the APC from fielding candidates ahead of 2019 general elections

– This followed the failure of state chapter of the party to meet the commission’s deadline (Sunday, October 7) for primaries

– Moreover, INEC wrote to the APC’s national chairman, Adams Oshiomhole, stating its resolve over political affairs in the state

Following its failure to meet the Sunday, October 7, deadline placed by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) the All Progressives Congress (APC) has been declared ineligible to field candidates for all elective positions in Zamfara ahead of the 2019 general polls.

INEC made its resolve known to APC’s national chairman, Adams Oshiomhole, in a letter on Tuesday, October 9, Premium Times reports.

Before now, the state chapter of the ruling party was heated up as political camps were engaged in stiff battles in efforts to produce candidates for positions.

The key contest was between the camps of the state governor, Abdulaziz Yari, and a senator, Kabiru Marafa. On the one hand, Yari worked to ensure his preferred aspirant, Mukhtar Idris, the state commissioner of finance, to take over power after him.

On the other hand, Marafa decried what he referred to as the governor’s high handedness and attempt to force Idris on the party.

Consequently, the APC’s national leadership dissolved all party structures in the state while also directing Yari, who is also running for a senatorial seat, to stay away from all matters relating to party primaries in the state.

The National Working Committee (NWC)’s decision on the removal of the party officials brought about a fresh fight between Oshiomhole and his deputy, Lawal Shuaibu. Both camps eventually organised parallel primaries, producing different sets of candidates.

However, the electoral panel sent to the state by the party’s national leadership announced that it was unable to organise primaries in the state.

The letter written by INEC to Oshiomhole, signed by the commission’s secretary, Okechukwu Ndeche, read: “You would note from the timetable that the conduct of party primaries is scheduled to take place between 18th August and 7th October 2018.

“Kindly also refer to the last schedule communicated by your party to the commission on the dates of party primaries nationwide, including Zamfara vide your letter Ref. APC/NHDQ/ INEC/19/18/51 dated 3rd Oct. 2018.

“However, report received from our office in Zamfara State shows that no primaries were conducted by your party in the state, Notwithstanding that our officials were fully mobilized and deployed.

“Based on the provisions of Section 87 and 31 of the Electoral Act 2010 (as amended), the commission does not expect that your party will submit names of any candidates from Zamfara State.

“For clarity, our position is that the All Progressives Congress (APC), will not be fielding candidates for the governorship, National Assembly and State Assembly Elections in Zamfara state for the 2019 for the general elections.”

Meanwhile, TRACK NEWS reported that following the cancellation of the governorship primary in Zamfara state by the leadership of the APC, Yari had faulted the decision.

Yari also accused Professor Abubakar Faki, chairman of the primary committee of bias, alleging that he was sponsored by the opposition to influence the outcome of the elections.

The governor who disclosed this in Gusau, the state capital on Thursday, October 4, insisted that the election was credible.

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