By Nimi Princewill.
The Kwara State chapter of the Abundant Nigeria Renewal Party (ANRP) has weighed in on the ongoing feud between its State Chairman, Ade Alabi and the party’s flag-bearer in the 2019 governorship election, Dr. Abdulmumin Yinka Ajia.
The ANRP, in a statement jointly signed by its Spokesperson, Kiyesola Ismaila and Secretary, Yusuf Saheed Adedire debunked allegations made by its former guber candidate that the party’s state chairman submitted fake names of aspirants to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) during the build-up to the general election.
Recall that Ajia, in an interview with INSIDER last Friday, accused the Kwara ANRP chairman of allegedly submitting fake names of candidates that never existed to INEC, describing him as a desperate, lying, unethical charlatan.
“Please ask him, why was ANRP primary election scheduled on the last day of INEC’s regulation? Why? There was a reason for that. The second question is, why did he lie? And I’m saying all of these with all sense of responsibility knowing that we may end up in court. Why did he submit fake names of candidates that never existed to INEC? He’s a desperate, lying, unethical charlatan”, Dr. Ajia said.
The party however, refuted the claims, stating that the primary was conducted under the supervisory eyes of INEC, whose officials were present at the venue from start to finish.
“There is no law preventing or that says the party cannot hold its primary elections on the last day of the INEC’s deadline. The said primary was conducted under the watchful and supervisory eyes of INEC as their officials were present at the venue from the beginning to the end of the primary elections”, the statement noted.
The ANRP urged its former flag-bearer to produce the alleged fake list he claimed was sent to INEC, adding that his allegation was an indictment on the electoral body, hence the need for formal investigation.
It said, “On a second look at the allegation of fake lists, it shows that, Dr. Ajia is indicting INEC to have received a fake list from the party which requires more formal investigation from the electoral body by inviting him to make clarifications. On the other hand, we hereby give notice to Dr. Abdulmumin Yinka Ajia to produce the said fake list.”
Addressing why the party declined Ajia’s request to support the leading opposition candidate, Alhaji Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq of the All Progressives Congress (APC) prior to the governorship election, the statement explained that the ANRP chose to be different from other political parties who threw their weight behind the APC and PDP.
It averred that after the party made its position clear, Ajia agreed to continue with his mandate/ campaign only for him to surprisingly decamp to the APC few days later.
The ANRP wondered why its erstwhile candidate was now trying to patronize Governor Abdulrazaq after rubbishing the governor’s candidacy during the gubernatorial debates, claiming that he (Abdulrazaq) had no ideology to move Kwara forward but fly an empty manifesto that was of no benefit to Kwarans.
Read full statement below:
Our attention has been drawn to the interview granted by the State Chairman, Ade Alabi and subsequent response by our former gubernatorial candidate, Dr. Abdulmumin Yinka Ajia on insiderng.net online newspaper.
Based on the claims and counter claims, the executives of Kwara state ANRP wishes to unequivocally state the following facts:
1. That the State Chairman, Ade Alabi and former gubernatorial candidate, Dr. Adulmumin Yinka Ajia had a very sound relationship from the beginning until now. It is important to note that all aspects of the duo’s deliberations concerning the party were always cascaded down. We were in the picture when the relationship between the both of them went sour, which the state executives prevailed to no logical end.
2. That there is no law preventing or that says the party cannot hold its primary election on the last day of the INEC’s deadline. The said primary was conducted under the watchful and supervisory eyes of INEC as their officials were present at the venue from the beginning to the end of the primary election.
3. On a second look at the allegation of fake lists, it shows that, Dr. Ajia is indicting INEC to have received a fake list from the party which requires more formal investigation from the electoral body by inviting him to make clarifications. On the other hand, we hereby give notice to Dr. Abdulmumin Yinka Ajia to produce the said fake list.
4. On the issue of abandoning his mandate six days to the election, it is surprising to know he said in his interview that:
“Sometime in February, I had a meeting with the ANRP excos and they said they were not going to support the leading opposition candidate, that they just wanted to go to the election. Since that was the majority view of the excos, I registered my minority view and said I didn’t agree with that position. At that time I didn’t have any intention
of leaving the ANRP. I just wanted them to understand that we needed to line behind Alhaji Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq to get the election over. But when they said they don’t care how it goes, whether the winner is PDP or APC, that they just wanted to go to the election, I said it was pointless going forward because we clearly didn’t have a path to victory.” (end of quote)
5. We categorically state that Dr. Ajia’s quoted statement above is false. The ANRP excos only wanted to be distinguished from other parties throwing their weight behind either the APC or PDP for different reasons which could be used against us in the future.
After the said meeting, the erstwhile candidate agreed to continue with his mandate, hence our campaign train moved with him to Ilorin South for campaign activities, only for him to surprisingly cross carpet few days later.
Let us quickly add that the same Governor Abdualrahman Abdulrazaq he (Ajia) is trying to patronize now, was rubbished in all of his debates, where he claimed that Abdulrazaq had no ideology to move Kwara forward but fly an empty manifesto that was of no benefit to Kwarans.
6. That it is pertinent to note that ANRP’s ideologies and manifestos are pro good-governance, as such the party is ready to align and accommodate anybody or organization that share the same visions.
7. That the ANRP executives have a cordial and professional relationship contrary to any claim by anyone, and are working in unison to make the ANRP a party to reckon with both at the state and federal level.
8. That on a final note, let it be known that ANRP is a party that plays ethical politics geared towards promoting accountability, probity, aimed at enhancing the welfare and lots of Kwarans and Nigerians at large.
We also wish Governor AA all the best in his quest, as we call on both parties to sheath their swords in the interest of peace.
Kwara State ANRP Spokesperson
Yusuf Saheed Adedire
Kwara State ANRP Secretary