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Kogi: Fear, Tension As APC Picks Late Audu’s Replacement

From Abdul Gaffar Bello, Lokoja

BALTIMORE, MD (AFRICAN EXAMINER) – There is tension in the ranks and files of the National and Kogi State Chapter of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) as the party is presently enmeshed in the controversies surrounding the choice of the candidate to substitute its late Governorship flag bearer, Prince Abubakar Audu.

Unconfirmed reports had it last weekend that late Audu’s first runners up in the party’s first primary, Yahaya Bello has emerged the winner of the fresh bye-election purportedly conducted last Friday.

However the choice has been contested by the former and late candidate’s running mate, Hon. James Abiodun Faleke, who insisted that the INEC should declare him the winner of the Saturday, November 21, 2015, Kogi State Governorship election, since he ran on a joint ticket with Audu.

Consequently, he had written both his party’s Chairman, Chief John Odigie-Oyegun and the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), requesting that his demand be considered.

The tension is palpable as the ruling APC has today (Monday) as the deadline to submit its substituted candidate to INEC, for the December 5, 2015 Supplementary poll in 91 polling units of the North central State.

Similarly, the friction being caused over the choice of the new candidate, is intense as all efforts to achieve a common ground, since last weekend till late Sunday have hit brick wall.

As Faleke is contending over his grouse on one hand, the loyalists to late Audu are still maintaining their ground that the deceased son, be presented to INEC stand for the supplementary and concluding poll, on another.

Hon. Faleke has maintained that he is supposed to be the natural choice of his party in the present travails, as well as accused the APC’s choice, Bello, as a disloyal party member, who had previously worked against the party as well as a political parasite, who wanted to benefit from the cause he never worked for.

As the intrigues linger, the APC has been promising he would reach out to all parties and stakeholders for truce. Still, Faleke said at the eight day Fidau of late Audu Sunday, that the mediation move has only been flying on the pages of dailies, saying no one has approached him for any fence mending talk or mediation since the INEC has directed the party last Tuesday to substitute its candidate and he had made public his complaints.

However, the APC confirmed last night that the tussles would be resolved and the party’s final choice would be officially declared Monday and subsequently presented to the INEC for this Saturday finishing poll.


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