Niger, Taraba, Imo, Bauchi APC Primaries Engulfed In Violence

By Enyioha Opara, Justin Tyopuusu, Gibson Achonu and Armstrong Bakam

ABUJA (PUNCH)--The primary elections of the All Progressives Congress in Niger, Taraba, Bauchi and Imo states resulted in pandemonium and violence as one person was reportedly killed and 17 supporters were injured.

It was learnt that over 10 vehicles said to belong to the aspirants were reportedly badly damaged during the mayhem.

It was gathered that dangerous weapons including cutlasses, daggers and charms were used by thugs and hoodlums on both sides to inflict injuries on each other.

Our correspondent also learnt that trouble started when supporters of the House of Representatives aspirants met at Dikko junction near Suleja, Niger State, during their final campaigns for the APC primary election.

It was said that initially, the misunderstanding was in the form of abuses by both supporters, but later degenerated into a free-for-all during which dangerous weapons were used resulting in people in the area running for dear lives.

The Police Public Relations Officer, Muhammad Abubakar, confirmed the incident saying it was a clash between supporters of two aspirants of the APC.

Abubakar said, “As I speak to you, the two aspirants − Lado Abubakar and Ardo Abubakar − are with the Area Commander in Suleja helping the police with the investigation.”

He also confirmed that several vehicles were damaged during the fracas but he could not ascertain the number of vehicles, adding that three people were injured.

Youths in Sarkin Dawaki Ward in Jalingo Local Government, Taraba State, attacked and destroyed a car belonging to Ahmed Yusuf − a chieftain of the party in the state.

The youths were said to be angry with the appearance of Ahmed Yusuf at Sarkin Dawaki Ward when he was supposed to be at his Turaki A ward.

When contacted, Yusuf said, “I went to the ward for supervision, I did not make trouble with anybody, the youths on their own decided to descend on me and destroy my car.

“I left the venue quietly without making trouble with them and I thank God it is only my car that got damaged.

In Imo State, members of the camp loyal to Governor Rochas Okorocha, also known as Ugwumba Movement, and those of the opposition popularly called the Coalition Alliance, engaged in a fight.

In virtually all the wards in the Ohaji/Egbema and Oguta Local Government Areas, irate party members opposed to the planned imposition of Uche Nwosu as the party’s governorship candidate by Okorocha impounded all vehicles at sight bearing the Ugwumba Movement inscription and diverted them to an unknown destination. Some vehicles belonging to the movement were reportedly set ablaze in the Mbaitoli LGA, where the state Deputy Governor, Prince Eze Madumere, hails from.

Meanwhile, a governorship aspirant on the platform of the APC in Imo state, Dr Chris Nlemoha, earlier called for the postponement of the governorship primary of the party in the state.

Nlemoha, who briefed journalists in Owerri, on Monday afternoon, said that the process had been compromised.

He, therefore, called for the disbandment of the Ahmed Gulak-led electoral committee overseeing the conduct of the primary.

One person was reportedly killed in Bauchi, while two others were injured following violence that erupted during the governorship primary of the APC.

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