The Kaduna protesters accused the party of denying them the right to choose their candidate.
The leaders of the Congress for Progressive Change, CPC, Kaduna North Local Government Area, Monday, protested what they described as imposition of Samaila Suleiman as the Chairmanship aspirant of the party by former Senator, Kanti Bello.
The party chairman for Kabala Ward, Saidu Mohammed, who led the protest on behalf of the 146 executives and delegates of the Local Government lamented that they have been denied their constitutionally guaranteed right to elect a candidate who will contest the forthcoming election in the state against candidates from other political parties.
Some of the CPC protesters carried placards with different inscriptions such as: “The same Kanti Bello that insult Buhari is now in CPC,” “Kanti Bello don’t destroy CPC,” “No leadership in Kaduna CPC,” and “No CPC primary elections in Kaduna State.”
The protesters thereafter called for cancellation of the exercise.
In the build-up to the October 18 local government chairmanship primary election in the state, the national leadership of CPC set up the Kanti Bello committee to come to Kaduna with the aim of reconciling Chairmanship aspirants from the 23 LGA’s in the state.
Speaking on what transpired, Mr. Mohammed said that with the appointment of the committee,
“it was hoped that when a consensus is reached, a single candidate will be presented and where the consensus failed, a primary election will be held, but to our greatest shock, the committee turned out not to be a reconciliation committee but an anointment committee”.
“Instead of promoting harmony and reconciliation among the Chairmanship aspirants, Kanti Bello made it very clear that he came to anoint and impose Samaila Suleiman on the party as its chairmanship candidate for Kaduna North LG and that he was not prepared to listen to any opposing views,” he emphasized.
The party leader said, based on the tussle that was going on, the CPC state leadership set up a screening committee which screened all the aspirants from the 23 LGAs and four aspirants emerged including Sadeeq Mamman-Lagos, Garba Adamu, Shu’aibu Lili and Samaila Suleiman.
He lamented that the CPC state chairman, Ahmadu Yaro, disingenuously removed the page containing the names of the other three candidates, except Samaila Suleiman, claiming that he was the only aspirant who appeared for the screening.
“It is illegal and unconstitutional for a reconciliation committee to disqualify an aspirant just because he insists on exercising his democratic right.
“We want to state clearly and unambiguously that we want to exercise our right of electing our candidates, that neither election nor affirmation took place on Saturday, 20th October, 2012 and that as at this moment, we do not have a candidate for the post of Kaduna North LG Chairman,” he said.
In their presentations, the protesters asked the party to stop acts capable of denying it election victory in the forthcoming LG election in the state.
Meanwhile, the Kaduna State Chairman of the CPC, Amadu Yaro, in an interview in his office told newsmen that a committee was constituted by the National Office where all the contestants in a position were allowed to come up with a consensus candidate even though some of them did not agree.
This led to the issue of Kaduna State where the committee appealed to the six contestants for the position to come up with a consensus candidate.
He said Sadeeq Mamman Lagos however insisted on being allowed to exercise his democratic right through participation in the primary election.
He said the decision to come up with a consensus was born out of the desire for the party to succeed in the upcoming LG election.