PRESS RELEASE 1 October, 2018
… Say election standard compare to Presidential primaries in Abuja
The All Progressives Congress, APC, governorship primaries in Borno State was one of the “most highly organized and credible” from nationwide assessments of governorship primaries held by political parties nationwide, a coalition of civil societies which monitored conduct of the election in Maiduguri has declared.
Omooba Kenneth Aigbegbele, President, Coalition of Civil Societies and Media Executives for Good Governance in Nigeria(COCMEGG), who doubles as Executive Secretary, Citizens Watch Nigeria (CWN), said in a statement that because of the interest generated by the number of governorship aspirants in Borno’s APC which was as high as 21, his coalition of civil societies decided to quietly enter Maiduguri to monitor all processes in the conduct of the primaries from accreditation of delegates, transportation of delegates to the venue, voting and the conduct of electoral officials sent from the APC headquarters in Abuja.
“Borno State recorded the highest number of governorship aspirants in the APC and because of that we expected a chaos situation which was why we came into Maiduguri silently for very serious monitoring of all processes. We monitored every step from accreditation of delegates at the state hotel on Sunday to access of all aspirants to meet with delegates, the conduct of electoral officials and the voting. We saw a complete neutrality of electoral officials, voting, collation and sorting of votes were done transparently before agents of all aspirants; we saw all aspirants going round to meet delegates, we also saw that aspirants had agents, ballot papers were sealed on arrival and procedures were well read out and followed. In summary, the standard of what we saw during the APC governorship primaries was one that can compare to well organized presidential primaries of a ruling party in Abuja. All delegates had tents seated orderly and were invited in orderly manner, voting was done through secret balloting to guarantee freedom of choice and all aspirants were given time to address delegates and everyone from the podium. We saw ten aspirants announcing they were stepping down for the eventual winner and we saw five aspirants took part freely without any intimidation whatsoever. We commend the conduct of Borno APC governorship primaries and recommend their standard to all political parties whether now or in future” Aigbegbele said.
The election was won by Professor Babagana Umara Zulum, mni, a former Commissioner of Reconstruction, Rehabilitation and Resettlement who scored 4,432 votes and he was trailed by Idris Mamman Durkwa who scored 115 votes.
All four other contestants who took part in the election including a party chieftain, Alhaji Gambo Lawan, accepted the outcome and congratulated the winner with a promise to work for the party’s victory in the 2019 general elections.