Internal Wrangling Mars ACN Ward Congress

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As the polls draw nearer, the battle for the soul of Lagos State between rival  groups loyal to former governor, Bola Ahmed Tinubu and his successor, Mr. Babatunde  Raji Fashola, SAN, may have commenced fully as people presumed to be loyal to the  governor were allegedly sidelined in the ward and local government congresses held  across the state.

The move Political Platform learnt, may be a signal that ex-governor Tinubu’s  loyalists are bent on demonstrating their hold on the affairs of the party ahead of  next year’s election.

Although, ACN leaders in the state were said to have opted to maintain the status  quo in order to avoid division, the faction believed to be loyal to Fashola has  condemned the manner in which the matter was handled by the party leadership.

An evidence of the internal rift within the rank of the party was seen on Tuesday  when aggrieved party members trooped to the state secretariat of the ACN to complain  of disenfranchisement during the ward and local government congresses.

The protesters alleged widespread manipulation of the party’s membership register to  favour stooges and lackeys of the party’s leadership in all the local councils in  the state.

The party members complained that delegates were imposed and not elected during the  congresses, a plot they fear would reduce the chances of the incumbent governor of  clinching the party’s gubernatorial ticket.

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Chief David Abidakun, the chairman of Lagos West Senatorial District stakeholders’  group, which has widespread presence in ten local government areas in the state,  said “a cabal wants to impose some people on the party as delegates for their own  selfish end,” adding that the imposition is against the wish of the members of the  party.

Reacting to the allegations of irregularities and lack of democracy during the  congresses, the chairman of the congress committee, Bashorun Alabi said the exercise  went on smoothly, adding that he was unaware of any protest.

“When it comes to selection in any party, such is bound to happen because we have  groups, we have caucuses, there ought to be complaints here and there. So if you  don’t get  something like that, it means something is wrong.

“But what we did was simple. We told them that if they felt that they were being  marginalized, they should not fight but report to us and we will look into it and  take appropriate steps. We even told our returning officers that if their is problem  in any ward,  they should come and report to us.”

He added that the response to the congress was overwhelming and the people were very  happy about the whole process.