The Ondo State All Progressives Congress, APC, House of Representatives’ primaries for the Idanre/Ifedore federal constituency was on Friday marred by violence.
It was gathered that during the primaries, several members of the party were reportedly injured when suspected political thugs were said to have used dangerous weapons to chase away party members who were at various wards in Ifedore and Idanre local government areas.
According to some of the party members, the exercise was allegedly manipulated in favour of one of the aspirants, Sunday Akinwalere against four other aspirants (Olawole Sunday-Jepson, Tuyi Akintimehin, Teniola Peter-Oladele and Ayodeji Adeniyi).
Members supporting the four other aspirants were said to have been attacked with dangerous weapons by thugs allegedly sponsored by the state chairman of the party, Mr Ade Adetimehin.
One of the aspirants, Olawole Sunday-Jepson called for the nullification of the house of representatives primaries in Idanre and Ifedore.
The incumbent representative of Idanre state constituency in the Ondo state House of Assembly, who is also an aspirant for the House of Representatives, Tuyi Akintimehin and another aspirant, Teniola Peter-Oladele, said there was no recognized and credible membership register for APC members in the state that could be used to conduct such primaries.
The aggrieved aspirants disclosed that the purported primaries were not supervised by any official from the National Secretariat while APC wards chairmen in Idanre were used as agents of Akinwalere, the anointed aspirant of Adetimehin.
Reacting, the party’s State Publicity Secretary, Mr Alex Kalejaye, insisted that the APC National Assembly and state Assembly primaries for 2019 elections were peaceful across Ondo state and denied any violence during the exercise.
The APC spokesman said the State Chairman, Adetimehin, had promised that all grievances would be genuinely looked into to avoid internal wrangling in the party.
Kalejaye said, “the Ondo State chapter of the party conducted a transparent and peaceful primaries to pick its National and State Assembly flagbearers 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. The State Chairman of the party, Engr. Ade Adetimehin, all it members for their maturity and peaceful conduct during the exercise.
“Adetimehin urged them to continue to stand by the party, assuring that all grievances would be genuinely looked into to avoid internal wrangling,” Kalejaye said.