Four House of Representatives aspirants on the platform of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Ondo state on Saturday called on the party’s National Working Committee (NWC) to conduct a fresh primary election in Idanre/Ifedore federal constituency of the state.
The aspirants included Tuyi Akintimehin, who is the lawmaker representing Idanre in the State House of Assembly, Olawole Sunday-Jepson, Teniola Peter-Oladele and Ayodeji Adeniyi.
They said at a press conference in Akure, the state capital, that the primary election scheduled to hold at the federal constituency on Friday was marred with violence.
They also accused the leadership of the state chapter of manipulating the shadow poll to favour a particular aspirant.
Sunday-Jepson, who spoke on behalf of the aggrieved aspirants, said: “The primary was a mere endorsement of one of the aspirants by the party leadership in the state.
“The primary election was arranged, skewed and designed to favour one of the aspirants, Mr. Sunday Akinwalere, who is enjoying the support of one of the leaders in the party
“There was no party official from the National Secretariat for the election while APC wards chairmen in Idanre were used as agents of Sunday Akinwalere.
“There was no comprehensive and credible register of members of the party with which a free and fair transparent direct primary could be conducted. Leaders of the party failed to turn up for the election.
“Members of the party who trooped out to partake in the exercise in their various wards were attacked, beaten and injured by hoodlums suspected to be political thugs.”
The aspirants urged the NWC led by Adams Oshiomhole to quickly wade into the matter by nullifying the election and conduct a fresh one in Idanre and Ifedore.
Alex Kalejaye, the state publicity secretary of the party, however, said the party’s primaries for the National Assembly and the State House of Assembly held across the state were peaceful.
Kalejaye said the state chairman, Ade Adetimehin, had promised that all grievances arising from the shadow polls would be genuinely looked into.
“The state chapter of the All Progressives Congress (APC) conducted transparent and peaceful primaries to pick its National and State Assembly flag bearers in the next general elections.
“The exercise was carried out with the full participation of the stakeholders and party members, in line with the directives of the National Executive Committee in Abuja.”