By Izunna Okafor
After a quite protracted time dissipation, the primary election of the All Progressive Congress (APC) in Nnewi South Local Government Area of Anambra State has been cancelled.
This was coming shortly after some video clips emerged from various political wards across the local government, showing the electorates expressing their distress and discomfort after waiting for all day long without ‘any show’ on the election materials and other principal officials that would conduct the election.
Addressing a press conference in Ukpor, the Local Government Headquarter, the Chairman of APC in Nnewi South Local Government Area, Prince Linus Eze regretted and apologized for the inconveniences caused to the electorates, and attributed everything to late arrival of election materials.
He noted that election materials meant to be used to conduct the election arrived very late to the local government area, due to a reason best known to the concerned authorities.
He said, “You can see things for yourself. The election materials arrived here after 5 PM, and you can see with me here, the INEC officials, the security agencies and other officials who escorted the election materials.
“The electorates in Nnewi South were indeed disenchanted. The people came out before 10 AM because they were told that the process, the accreditation would start at 10 AM and end at 2 PM. And they stayed till noon and evening, until they started going home, after waiting for so long.
“In the 20 ward collection centres in the local government area, nothing was seen; and nobody told us anything. People were calling me here and there to know what was going on, but I had no answer to give them.
Responding to a question of what could have been the possible cause of the delay, the APC stakeholder said, “That was what I told you before, that I got no information, no communication, nothing whatsoever at all on what caused the delay. And when people were calling me, I told them that I have not gotten any information from the headquarter. And I never saw any personnel on ground to also conduct or pilot the electoral process.
On whether the election would still hold as planned, he said, “What is it by your time? This is 5:23 PM, and if you were the electorate, what would you still be doing at your ward collection centre by this time? Those people who came at 10AM, do you believe or expect that they would still be here by now? Of course they all must have been impatient and disenchanted.
“So all I’m saying is that you can see things for yourself. Practically, when it’s 5:23, when will you begin the accreditation? when will you conclude that? When and from where will you recall people who have been disenchanted from morning till after 5? Eeh? How can you recall them? I’m asking you.
“How can you recall the electorates from their various homes in the 20 ward collection centres? What mechanism will you put in place at night to make it work, in the face of this security reality in the country? And will they be patient again to come back today? Of course, you know the implication of all these.
Asked when the people should reconvene, he said, “I am not the authority that will say that. But I have implicit confidence in our party, our National Working Committee, Governor Dapo Abiodun who has been sent to conduct it in Anambra State, and our state’s party executives. They are the people who will tell us when such will be done, and what next to do. Thank you”
The electoral materials were thereafter returned to Awka amidst tight security.