National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress, Adams Oshiomhole, has again come under attack by the Director General of Voice of Nigeria, Osita Okechukwu.
Still bitter over the outcome of party’s primaries in Enugu State, the DG accused Oshiomhole, of ‘deliberately’ refusing to utilise the substitution window to redress the ‘rigging’ of the primaries.
Okechukwu contested the APC primary for Enugu West Senatorial District, which was declared in favour of Mrs Juliet Ibekaku-Nwagwu, the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Justice Reform.
Okechukwu insisted that he won the primary.
He had filed a petition in which he demanded that his name be submitted as the party’s candidate for the senatorial poll.
However, following the expiration of the period for substitution of candidates, Okechukwu has described the setting up of a reconciliation committee by Oshiomhole as a ‘narcissistic ploy’ to consolidate the outcome of the “mangled” election.
In a letter he addressed to the Chairman of the APC Reconciliation Committee, South-East, who is also the Kano State Governor Abdullahi Gandujue, on Sunday, Okechukwu said Oshiomhole refused to ‘redress the rigged primaries’ by wilfully ignoring the substitution window.
The letter, captioned: ‘Tale of the most mangled primary election in Nigeria’, said in part: “Permit me to state that it is a pity that it seems that Comrade Adams Oshiomhole in his narcissistic ploy to consolidate his mangled APC primary elections, belatedly convoked your eminent committee, so as to foreclose the most remedial antidote for us rigged aspirants – the substitution window.
“Hence bolting the door after the horse had escaped, since the substitution window of the National Assembly, governorship and house of assembly, to the best of my knowledge, had closed.
“When Comrade Oshiomhole travelled abroad, some of us pointed out that he deliberately travelled so as not to utilise the substitution window provided by the Electoral Act and the extant laws to redress the rigged primary.
“I am not happy to be vindicated, for at the end of the day as an elder of our great party, I pray that your committee should not end up achieving only the peace of the graveyard, for some aggrieved aspirants might quietly go home sulking.”
The VON DG observed that Oshiomhole ‘rigged’ the primaries in Enugu after imposing direct primary elections on the state chapter of the party.
He added: “Midway, after conducting the election of four local government areas out of 17 at the University of Nigeria, Enugu Campus, he (Oshiomhole) stopped it for no just reason.
“The next day, as an autocrat, he changed it to direct primary, with neither ballot papers nor ballot boxes – a very illegal and undemocratic atrocity.”
Okechukwu urged the Ganduje-led reconciliation committee to ‘unravel’ what he described as the mystery surrounding the ‘allocation’ of votes to Ibekaku-Nwagwu in the Enugu West Senatorial District primary election.
“May I appeal to Your Excellency’s committee to use your good offices to help us unravel the mystery surrounding the allocation of unearned votes to Juliet Ibekaku-Nwagwu in an election which I won.”