Mixed grill as APC holds councillorship primaries in Lagos

APC member angry over extension of party’s NWC members’ tenure, heads to court
United Bank for Africa

Councillorship candidates of the All Progressives Congress (APC) for the upcoming local council poll in Lagos emerged in many areas on Monday, but disagreements led to postponement in some areas.

The party had on Sunday announced that the councillorship primaries in the 377 Wards of its 57 local government areas would hold on Monday.

Senator Tokunbo Afikuyomi, chairman of the APC  Local Government Electoral Committee, who announced this on Sunday, had called on party members at the ward levels to make themselves available at the designated centres where the councillorship elections will hold.

In some areas visited by the News Agency of Nigeria correspondents, the elections went on smoothly, though delegates had to wait for long awaiting arrival of electoral officers.

There were, however, some disagreements in some other areas.

At Ward G in Oriade Local Council Development Area (LCDA) of Lagos, Mr Segun Lawson emerged winner of the primary election, polling 18 votes to defeat Ramon Aladega and Saidi Ayinde who got a vote each.

The News Agency of Nigeria reports that 20 party members had voted at the election held at Satellite Town Primary School.

Lawson expressed joy at his election and thanked members of the party for the confidence reposed him.

“This is victory for the party and all the people of the ward.

“I thank party members for the confidence in me and I promise not disappoint them” he said.

It was however an easy victory for Mr Jamiu Abiodun in the election as he emerged unopposed as councillorship candidate of Ward F in the area.

Abiodun and his supporters went in wild jubilation as soon as his candidacy was endorsed by party members at the primary.

NAN reports though the primary started several hours behind schedule, it was conducted peacefully.

Security officials manned the gate and thoroughly screened party members before voting.

The Sole Administrator of the LCDA, Mr Habeeb Aileru, together with some officials were around to ensure peaceful conduct.

At Ward C, Isheri- Osun in Igando/Ikotun Local Council Development Area (LDCA), the election, which was scheduled to hold at 9 a.m., did start until 3.45 pm.

Mr Gbenga Bankole, a consensus candidate, was eventually declared winner at the ward, where policemen and Lagos State Neighborhood Safety Corps were present to maintain order.

At Ward E, in Orile-Agege LCDA, after initial skirmishes, an Electoral Officer, who came to the venue at 2:p.m. relayed the guidelines and conducted the primary election.

However, Prince Sunday Ajayi, Chairman, All Progressives Congress (APC) in Orile-Agege Local Council Development Area (LCDA) told NAN that as far as he was concerned, there was no councillorship primaries in the council.

However, the APC primary election did not hold at ward C Amuwo Odofin LG  following conflict in the register sent by the state and the one from the ward.

A chieftain of the party in the ward and former Secretary of the local government, Mr Abayomi Omisore, said the APC members in the ward were not ready to entertain imposition of a candidate through whatever means.

He said that the postponement was necessary to ensure that only the wish of the people prevailed.

According to him, all stakeholders, including the Amuwo Odofin DPO, Mr Obong Okon, endorsed d postponement.

He said the election may hold on Wednesday or Thursday.

Security personnel had been on ground at the secretariat located on F Close, 41 Festac, where seven persons are contesting for councillors hip in the ward.

While some members hailed the postponement, others frowned at it.

A member who pleaded anonymity said that the postponement prevented violence as some of the members of the party were ready to fight if their candidates would not win.

However another member of the party said that he was disappointed by the postponement, adding that he had been waiting for the election.

At Ward K, however, the election took place after a long delay

At Ojo LGA, many party members were seen waiting for officials to conduct the primary when NAN visited.

Efforts to get reactions from Sen. Afikuyomi were unsuccessful as he could not be reached on phone.

The Senator had, however, appealed to any aggrieved member to take advantage of the conflict resolution mechanisms provided by the party in the Sunday statement.