One killed, others injured as APC factions hold parallel congresses

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Suspected thugs, delegates and security agents at the Ekiti State All Progressives Congress governorship primary in Ado Ekiti...on Saturday. Photos: Olufemi Atoyebi, Femi Makinde and Saheed Olugbon
Our Correspondents
The obvious cracks in the All Progressives Congress manifested on Saturday when factions within the party held parallel Local Government Congresses in some states.
SUNDAY PUNCH correspondents, who monitored the polls across the country, also observed that there were violence and protests in other states where parallel polls were not held.
There was tension in Ifako-Ijaiye and Agege local government areas of Lagos when one person reportedly lost his life in Agege during a shoot out with policemen.

States where factional groups held parallel polls included Ondo, Kwara, Edo, Bayelsa, Ebonyi and Abia.

Akeredolu, Kekemeke factions hold separate congresses

Ondo State Governor, Mr. Rotimi Akeredolu, and a former chairman of the APC in the state, Mr. Isaac Kekemeke, led members of the party to parallel congresses on Saturday.

The two factions claimed to have held the authentic congress while one of our correspondents observed that both exercises were held without violence

The Acting Chairman, Ade Adetimehin, denied knowledge of any parallel congress and argued that the real exercise conducted and attended by the APC congress committee, set up by the national secretariat, Abuja was the authentic one he participated in.

But a member of the House of Representatives from the Ifedore Local Government Area, who is a leader of the Kekemeke’s faction in the council, Mr. Bamidele Baderinwa, said the party held its congress at the APC secretariat, Igbara Oke, the headquarters of the local government.

Buhari, Saraki factions divide Kwara

A group, which identified itself as a faction of the All Progressives Congress loyal to President Muhammadu Buhari, on Saturday, held local government congress in Kwara State.

The spokesman for the group, Mr. Kayode Oyin-Zubair, during a media briefing, said the group was aggrieved over its alleged marginalisation and discrimination.

Kayode Oyin-Zubir said, “We conducting the Ilorin West local government congress. This is the only congress we know today where we will elect the officials that will run the party in the council.

“As you are all aware, the APC congress is taking place in all the LGAs in Nigeria. The same exercise is going on simultaneously in all the 16 LG areas of the state.”

However, the group led by the Senate President, Dr. Bukola Saraki, claimed that the  APC LG congresses across the 16 local government areas of Kwara state were peaceful.

Saraki’s senior media aide, Alhaji Abdullahi Olesin, said the exercise had been concluded in some local governments, especially in the  Ilorin West, Ilorin East, Ilorin South, Asa, Moro and Irepodun local government areas.

The Chairman Congress Committee for Kwara State, Senator Mohammed Ohiare, said he was satisfied with the peaceful conduct of APC members during the Congress.

Minister, ex-gov’s candidate divide Ebonyi APC

A faction loyal to the Minister of Science and Technology, Dr. Ogbonnaya Onu, and another under the control of the party’s governorship candidate in the 2015 general elections, Senator Julius Ucha, held separate LG polls in Ebonyi State.

They were massive turn out of voters to elect the 27-member executives of the party across the state.

The Onu faction has Pastor Eze Nwachukwu as its chairman while the Ucha faction has Mr. Ben Nwaobasi as its own factional chairman.

The two factions have been battling for the soul of the party since 2015 with each operating its own separate offices in the state.

Violence mars Edo parallel congress

Two factions of the APC in the Owan West Local Government Area held separate congresses on Saturday.

It was gathered that a faction, led by one Ojo Asein, rejected the harmonised list presented by another group loyal to a former Secretary to the State Government, Prof. Julius Ihonvbere.

Gunshots were reportedly fired on Saturday as violence marred the exercise in the Owan East Local Government Area of the state.

It was gathered that members of the APC in the area had disagreed over the consensus arrangement proposed by the state leadership of the party.

The Commissioner of Police, Mr. Johnson Kokumo, could not be reached for comments as calls to his mobile did not go through.

Sylva, Binabo split members in Bayelsa

A faction loyal to a former governor of Bayelsa State, Chief Timipre Sylva, and another loyal to a former acting governor, Chief Nestor Binabo, conducted separate congresses.

Sylva, while commenting on the outcome of the LG congresses in the state, commended the delegates and party members for the peaceful conduct of the exercise.

But Binabo, who addressed the media on the outcome of the congresses, claimed that the LG congresses, conducted by his group, were the authentic while the ones conducted by Sylva’s faction were fake.

One dies in Lagos

There was tension in the Ifako-Ijaiye Local Government Area of Lagos State on Saturday as the congress ended abruptly when delegates disagreed on the election of some candidates.

Trouble started when the electoral officers announced some names as elected executive members after a voice vote by the delegates.

Nurudeen Olanose said there was shooting from inside the venue and a bullet hit a man at the gate of the Central Primary School, Oniwaya, Agege, where it held.

Efforts to confirm the shooting and arrests by the police were, however, unsuccessful as the Lagos Police spokesman, Chike Oti, promised to get back but had yet to do so as of the time of filing this report.

Two parallel local government congresses that produced various party executives for the ruling APC, were conducted in all the 21 local government areas of Adamawa State on Saturday.

The development deepened the crisis pitching Governor Mohammed Bindow against a faction of the party controlled by the sacked Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Babachir Lawal, and former Governor Murtala Nyako.

Nyako and Lawal supporters held  parallel local government congresses at the state headquarters of the Buhari Campaign Organisation along Aminu Galadima Way in Yola, the state capital.

Stories by: Success Nwogu, Etim Ekpimah, Alexander Okere, Peter Dada, Clement Nnachi and Hindi Livinus


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