The opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) governorship primary for the November 16 Kogi election was disrupted in the early hours of Wednesday by gunmen, Concise News reports.
It was learned that gunmen invaded the venue, Confluence Stadium, Lokoja, when voting had ended and sorting of votes was ongoing.
This news medium learned that the gunmen stormed the venue at about 1:45a.m. and started shooting from different directions, with Chairman of the Electoral Committee and Governor of Adamawa, Ahmadu Fintiri, reportedly escaping.
Aspirants, delegates and others scampered for safety.
It was gathered that votes in eight out of the 10 ballot boxes had been counted and sorted out before the disruption by the gunmen.
PDP speaks about peaceful election
Earlier, Kola Ologbondiyan, the PDP Publicity Secretary, said that the party had taken essential steps to ensure a free, fair, credible, transparent and peaceful election.
The spokesman for the party disclosed that the names of all the delegates across the state were earlier published in different national dailies and online media.
Ologbodiyan added that each delegate had his or her photograph on accreditation cards, noting that all other aspirants had promised to support whoever won the primary among them, in the governorship election on November 16.
What the electoral chairman said before election
Fintiri had disclosed that 2,388 delegates were accredited out of the total of 2,511 PDP delegates across the 21 local government areas that make up the north-central state.
Fintiri further said that 600 ballot papers had been provided, adding that they had enough.
”We have 13 aspirants for Kogi PDP governorship primaries and no aspirant has signified their interest to step down. So, we have 13 agents representing all the 13 aspirants,” he said.
Aspirants cleared to contest
The opposition PDP, on 21 August, cleared 21 aspirants to run for the party’s governorship ticket.
The aspirants were screened by the Screening Committee headed by the Governor of Taraba State, Darius Ishaku, at the PDP presidential campaign office in Maitama.
Those screened included Wada Idris; Senator Dino Melaye; Erico Ameh, Aminu Suleiman, Grace Adejoh, Abubakar Ibrahim, Kabiru Haruna, Musa Wada, Saliu Atawodi (retd), Mohammed Adah, Victor Adoji, Baye Averehi and Emmanuel Omebije.
Five aspirants step down for Wada
Meanwhile, former Minister of State for Health Arch. Gabriel Aduku said on Tuesday that five governorship aspirants had stepped down for former governor of the state Idris Wada.
Aduku, who is the Vice-Chairman, Kogi East Elders Council (KEEC), disclosed this at a news conference in Lokoja, the state capital.
According to him, nine aspirants agreed to step down for Wada, while listing five, including the only woman aspirant, Grace Iye Adejoh.
Others said to have agreed to step down included Atawodi, Adoji, Mohammed Tetes and Omebije,
He added that the decision to prevail on the other aspirants to collapse their structure into Wada’s was in the overall interest of the party and the state.