The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to elect the party’s candidate for the Anambra Central senatorial zone ended in chaos with different aspirants declaring victory for themselves.
In Anambra Central zone, Mrs. Jonathan had told oil tycoon, Arthur Eze, that she wanted him to back Ms. Uche Ekwunife, a controversial former banker turned politician who recently defected from the All Peoples Grand Alliance (APGA) to the PDP.
Some of the candidates told our correspondent today that the party never told them the venue for the primaries nor did the party release the names of voting delegates.
SaharaReporters had reported a few days ago that many party members were aggrieved over reports that President Goodluck Jonathan and his wife, Patience, had decided who they want to emerge as the party’s candidates in all the senatorial and House of Representatives primaries.
“We all paid N4.5 million to collect forms to run in the primaries. But the party that collected our money did not have the decency to tell us the venue for the primaries or the identity of those who are delegates,” one of the candidates told SaharaReporters.
Our correspondent learned that Ms. Ekwunife declared herself winner of a “primary” from which other aspirants were excluded.
Another aspirant, Sylvester Okonkwo, organized his own “primary” at Emmaus Hotel in Awka and declared himself elected as the party’s candidate. Yet another candidate, Obiora Okonkwo, reportedly held his own “primary” at Choice Hotel in Awka and was “elected”.
A faction of the party controlled by controversial “godfather” Chris Uba is expected to arrange its own “primary” and declare former Senator Annie Okonkwo as the winner.
“This is a shameful day for Anambra State, for the PDP, and for Nigeria’s attempt at democracy,” one party member told SaharaReporters. “If our party continues in this way, then we are likely to lose the support of voters all over Anambra,” he added.
At a different location in the state, disgraced former minister of aviation, Ms. Stella Oduah was declared winner at the primary election held at Nteje in Anambra state. Ms. Oduah reportedly defeted Sam Ikefuna; John Emeka and Senator Margery Okadigbo with 259.
SaharaReporters was unable to reach Olisah Metuh at the PDP national office to seek clarification on why the primaries in Anambra were marked by chaos and confusion.