Against the crisis rocking the Ondo State All Progressives Congress (APC), the leadership of the party, led by its national chairman, John Odigie-Oyegun, on Saturday said that anybody can endorse any candidate of their choice.
He however, stated that imposition of candidates was not allowed, explaining that endorsement is different from imposition of candidate.
The party leadership also, denied that it has endorsed any aspirant to emerge as the candidate of the party for the November 26governorship election in the state.
The party reached this decision on Saturday in Abuja, during the meeting of members of the National Working Committee (NWC), with the 24 APC governorship aspirants in the election, over the current crisis in the state.
Odigie-Oyegun, who disclosed the resolution of the meeting when he addressed journalists after a closed-door meeting with the stakeholders held at the national secretariat of the party, revealed that the party is giving all aspirants a level playing field in the contest.
He said, “We have had extensive and frank discussions; we have had discussions that were occasionally passionate and strong but at the end of the day, I think we have reached some very basic and fundamental understanding that will guide the process in Ondo State from now through the primary period.
“I think we have all accepted that there is nothing wrong in anybody, member of the party or even non-member endorsing any of the aspirants. We have also accepted unanimously that there will be no attempt on the part of the party to impose any aspirant on the party and on the electorate of Ondo State.
“We have canvassed a very clear distinction between endorsement and imposition. I want to assure all the aspirants that the party at the national level has no preferred aspirant and it is not going to endorse any aspirant.”
Ondo APC has been engulfed in serious of crisis recently over allegations that the national leader of the APC, Senator Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, had already ‘anointed’ one of the aspirants, Mr. Segun Abraham as the candidate for the party ahead of its coming primaries.
This allegation Tinubu has denied, but insisted that as a member of the party he has the right to support any aspirant of his choice.
Meanwhile, there are reports that the State Working Committee (SWC) of the party in the state has removed the state Chairman Hon. Isaac Kekemeke.
The SWC, which addressed a news conference after the end of its meeting subsequently appointed the State Vice Chairman, Mr. Ade Adetimehin, as the Acting Chairman.
The SWC accused Kekemeke of supporting and promoting one of the governorship aspirants ahead the August 27 primary of the party.
The aggrieved SWC members said more than the required two-third members of the committee voted in support of Kekemeke’s removal.
By Ebere Ndukwu …
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