As the crisis rocking the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) in Edo State gets messier, the party is in deep trouble over the conduct of its primary elections in Ondo State.
A source at the party headquarters disclosed that they may not have a candidate for the Ondo Governorship election scheduled for 10 October 2020.
Documents available to our reporter indicate that the party notified INEC that it has fixed 20 July 2020 for its primary election in the State and invited the Commission to monitor the primary.
However, the letter with Ref. No. APC/NHDQ/INEC/19/020/013 dated 17 June 2020 was only signed by the Ag. National Secretary of the party, Arc. Waziri Bulama.
INEC in a letter sighted by our reporter replied the party, saying that the letter violates the provision of Article 4.4 of the Commission’s Regulations and Guidelines for the Conduct of Party Primaries which requires that such notices must be jointly signed by the National Chairman and National Secretary of a political party.
Consequently, INEC in the letter signed by the Secretary to the Commission Mrs Rose Oriaran-Anthony rejected the latter and advised the party to do the needful. .
Unless it takes urgent steps to rectify the situation, APC runs the risk of not having a candidate for the Ondo Governorship election. By the provision of Section 85 (1) of the Electoral Act, parties are required to give INEC 21 days notice for the conduct of their primaries for Governorship elections. Time is running out for the party.
It would be recalled that according to the Timetable released by INEC on 6 February 2020, party primaries for the Ondo governorship election starts on 2 July and ends on 25 July 2020 while the last day for submission of names of candidates is 28th July 2020.