The National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Adams Oshiomhole may be headed for a showdown with his successor, Godwin Obaseki, over the type of primary election to be used to pick the party’s flagbearers in the state ahead of the 2019 general elections.
While the Oshiomhole-led National Working Committee (NWC) favours the direct primary option for all positions, the Edo State chapter is believed to be bent on using consensus option which it said is less rancorous.
The state chapter is also believed to be opposed to the direct primary option because of lack of comprehensive membership register which it said was integral to the conduct of direct primaries.
This emerged as Oshiomhole is said to be preparing to meet APC governors, many of whom favour indirect primary and consensus options, to iron out differences over the issue.
The APC National Chairman speaking through his media aide, Simon Ebegbulem said that any state desirous of adopting indirect or consensus must do so through a resolution reached by all major stakeholders, Vanguard reported.
“They should write a letter to the national secretariat on the issue and where there is a disagreement, the national secretariat will go and conduct direct primaries,” he was quoted as saying.
But a top APC and government source in Edo said, “It (primary) is going to be by consensus.
“How have we been doing it? If not by consensus, the other way is direct. Now where is the register? Who is a member of APC that will come and vote?
“So when you talk about direct, you must first have a comprehensive membership register. It is like conducing election in Nigeria and you will tell everybody to come and vote; will it work?
“You must start at a point. Lagos that is talking of direct primaries, they are doing registration now so they can have a register and say this is what we have.
“For direct primaries, you have a known registered number otherwise everybody can come and vote.
“Do you have the logistic to conduct a direct primaries in Edo State?
“Some leaders of the party including aspirants have been angling for direct primaries as they say that is how popular and generally acceptable candidates would emerge.”
However, the Media Assistant to the Edo State Governor, Crusoe Osagie, denied any knowledge of the primary option to be adopted in the state.