Runner-up in the All Progressives Congress (APC) governorship primary in Ondo State, Segun Abraham, has rejected the result of the primary election.
Mr. Abraham, the perceived candidate of the National Leader of the APC, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, had earlier congratulated the “surprise” winner of the primary election, Rotimi Akeredolu (SAN) and pledged to work for his victory at the November 26 polls.
But in a sudden turn of events, the aspirant challenged Mr. Akeredolu’s victory and submitted a petition with the APC Governorship Primary Appeal Committee.
Mr. Abraham polled 635 votes to come second behind Akeredolu, a former President of the Nigerian Bar Association, NBA, who garnered 669 votes.
Another aspirant, Olusola Oke, who came third, has also rejected the result, alleging like many others that the list of delegates was doctored.
A statement signed by the Director-General of Abraham’s campaign organization Mr. Olu Adegboro, reads: “It is no longer news that as a true democrat, imbued with the best spirit of sportsmanship, I congratulated Mr Rotimi Akeredolu, who purportedly emerged as the candidate of the All Progressives Congress in the September 3rd gubernatorial primary election in Ondo State in the face of palpable disbelief and surprise on the outcome of the primary election by my numerous supporters.
“The news however is that, sordid and staggering facts have since emerged on how the process leading to the primary election was manipulated and compromised. It is now beyond doubt that the delegate list used on the day of the primary election was doctored and strangely injected with a mind blowing number of delegates who are neither executive members of our party nor statutory delegates.
“To say the least, the manipulation of the delegate list, highly skewed accreditation process and the entire processes leading to the conduct of the primary election have cast the darkest stain on the result of the primary election held on the 3rd September, 2016.
“Against this background, coupled with the change and integrity that our party preaches and practises, and having widely consulted with my numerous supporters, I have reached the hour of decision to fall back on the internal mechanism of our great party to seek redress so that the end of justice will be served and, more importantly, our democracy may endure. To this end, the outcome of the September 3rd APC governorship primaries in Ondo State is unacceptable and I hereby against same.
“The allegations that have sadly pelted the supposedly free and fair Saturday exercise, where 24 aspirants battled to pick the party’s ticket, include but not limited to delegates list tampering, fake delegates incursion, disenfranchising of rightful delegates, smuggling of illegal ballot papers into ballot count”, he concluded.