Strong indications have started to emerge that Alhaji Yahaya Bello, the runner up in the All Progressives Congress (APC) governorship primaries last month, will likely be nominated as the party’s candidate in the Kogi state supplementary polls slated for next week (December 5). Daily Trust reports.
This is in contradiction with the remarks made by the APC national chairman John Odigie-Oyegun, in a statement, which suggested that the party will organize new primaries to pick a replacement for Prince Abubakar Audu who died on Sunday, November 22, shortly after the election was declared inconclusive.
It would be recalled, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) handed APC a deadline of December 1, to nominate a replacement for Audu, days after his death.
This has stirred controversies in the party as some party leaders believe, there should be a new primaries to pick Audu’s replacement why others believe the calls for a new primary is not needed as Audu should be automatically replaced with another candidate.
The Party’s hegemony believes it is in line with the letter of the Electoral Act, which says a party would be allowed to make a substitution if its candidate dies.
The APC leaders also kicked against the appointment of James Faleke, Audu’s running mate as the party’s substitute candidate because he did not contest in the primaries.
According to the APC, Faleke is a Lagosian of Kogi ancestry who served as chairman of a local government in Lagos state and is currently a legislator representing a constituency in Lagos state, hence his rejection.
However, Alhaji Yahaya Bello, who is Igbirra from Kogi state’s central senatorial zone, had polled 703 votes to finish second to Audu who polled 1, 109 votes in the APC primaries.