The All Progressives Congress (APC) in Lagos State is set for the screening of 1,385 aspirants jostling for the party’s chairmanship and councillorship seats in the forthcoming council elections.

The State Secretary of the party, Lanre Ogunyemi, disclosed this in a statement in Lagos on Wednesday.

Mr Ogunyemi said 332 chairmanship and 1,053 councillorship aspirants will be screened across the 20 local government areas and 37 local council development areas of the state.

“With the end of sales and submission of forms by aspirants of the APC Lagos state, the party is set to commence its screening exercise on May 15.

“The exercise will hold at the state secretariat of the party for chairmanship aspirants and local government party offices for councillorship aspirants.

“332 chairmanship aspirants are expected to be screened, while 1,053 councillorship aspirants will undergo the screening exercise across the state,” Mr Ogunyemi said.

According to him, the screenings will end on May 21, while appeals on screening will start from May 22 to end on May 26.

“The primary elections will hold on May 29 and appeals on the primaries will be heard from May 31 to June 1,” he added.

Mr Ogunyemi noted that the ruling party intended to adhere strictly to its set-out timelines in conformity with the Lagos State Independent Electoral Commission (LASIEC) timetable.

Outcry

The APC screening holds amidst an outcry by major political parties in the state over the cost of nomination forms for the July 24 election.

On Tuesday, the Inter-Party Advisory Council (IPAC), the umbrella body of political parties in Lagos State, called on LASIEC to reduce its fees for nomination forms, to enhance inclusiveness.

The group had earlier made the call shortly after LASIEC’s consultative parley with the leadership of political parties, last month.

According to the guidelines issued by LASIEC chairman, Ayotunde Philips, on April 24, the commission had fixed N150, 000, N100, 000 and N75, 000 as nomination forms fees for the chairmanship, vice-chairmanship and councillorship candidates, respectively.

In the renewed call, IPAC, in the statement by its Chairman, James Adeshina and Secretary, Olusegun Jaiyeola in Lagos, appealed to LASIEC to reduce the fee for chairmanship aspirants to N50, 000 as against N150, 000.

It also said that of councillorship aspirants should be reduced to N20,000 as against N75,000.

“We appreciate the level of readiness and preparedness of LASIEC toward the forthcoming council election slated for July 2021.

“The IPAC, comprising of all political parties participating in the coming election, had a meeting on May 10 and resolved that the cost of the form should be reduced.

“This reduction is necessary considering the effect of COVID-19 pandemic on the nation’s economy which we are all still trying to survive, and the fact that same form was sold for ₦50,000 during the last LG Election,” the IPAC said.

It noted that there was no provision for collection of fees for the vice – chairmanship aspirants in the LASIEC Law 2008 (as amended) hence; aspirants seeking such positions should be exempted from paying.

The IPAC further said that the chairmanship and the vice-chairmanship were running on a joint ticket.

It said that voter’s card requirements should be removed from the LASIEC guidelines in purchasing forms.

The council said the collection of forms should begin after the primary elections in various political parties and should extend to the final day of submission.

It said that the process of payment for the form should be reviewed and made less cumbersome.

(NAN)

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