Stakeholders of All Progressives Congress (APC) in Yobe have threatened to take legal action if their complaints of injustice allegedly exhibited during the Ward and Local Government congresses in the state were not addressed.
Speaking through their spokesperson, Alhaji Adamu Yaro, during a press conference in Damaturu on Sunday, they said the manner of conduct of the congresses in the state could attract litigations, as well as threaten future electoral fortunes of the party.
“The gross injustices shown in the congresses, if not addressed, will leave us with no option than to fight it in a court of law.
“The party, as a matter of urgency, must take appropriate measures to address the disaffection, strengthen unity and promote internal democracy, to avoid the consequences of imposition and marginalization suffered by other political parties in the past,” they said.
According to them, aspirants vying for various offices paid for nomination forms in a designated bank account of the party but were denied same as officials handling the forms deserted the party secretariat.
“At the end of the day, some people were returned as elected through affirmation; this is in aberration to the provisions of the party constitution and breach of the congress guidelines, which must not be tolerated and encouraged.
“It is important to note that we have at no time opted for consensus or affirmation, but resolved for conduct of credible, free and fair election for the emergence of party leadership,” the stakeholders said.
The stakeholders urged the party to declare the ward and local government congresses conducted in the state as null and void.
“The party should organize fresh elections, distribute nomination forms to all those who paid and allow them to participate in a free and fair election,” they insisted.
Reacting to the claims, Secretary of the APC in Yobe, Alhaji Abubakar Bakabe, told newsmen that the party agreed on affirmation of the existing structures in the ward and local government councils because of lack of time and resources to organize straight elections.
“It was agreed that the party in the state will go for affirmation and replace officials who died or left the party, or left the state for any reason; that was our resolution and we abided by it,” he said.
The secretary refuted the allegation that aspirants paid for nomination forms but were denied the forms, adding “I have not seen anyone who came for the nomination form but was denied”.
Meanwhile, Alhaji Mohammed Lamin, a chieftain of the party and commissioner for education, said the party was aware of complaints on alleged marginalization, disenfranchisement and disaffection arising from the congresses.
He however described the complaints as “in-house problem that would be sorted out”.