PDP to Senate:Direct primaries is a retrogressive provision

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The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has described the passage by the All Progressives Congress (APC)-led Senate of direct primary for the nomination of candidates for election, in all political parties, as a retrogressive provision.

The opposition party said the amendment is a move that seeks to wipe off all the gains achieved in our electoral practice since 1999.

PDP in a statement signed by Kola Ologbondiyan, its National Publicity Secretary said the decision by the APC-controlled Senate is a humongous blow to the development of democratic norms and a plot to introduce anarchy during internal party elections as currently obtainable in the APC.

The Senate had approved a provision in the Electoral Bill that allowed parties to use either direct or indirect mode of primaries in nominating candidates for elections during primaries. But the red chamber changed that yesterday that it also allowed the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to choose its mode of transmission of the election results.

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“The PDP holds that the provision is aimed at increasing the costs of nomination procedures thereby surrendering the processes to money bags against the wishes and aspiration of Nigerians.

“Our party makes bold to state that with the exception of the APC, which intends to deploy looted funds in future election, hardly will there be any political party that will be able to raise the cost of conducting internal elections under a direct primary process.

“This is why the decision of the Senate has elicited widespread rejection from Nigerians across the board.”

The PDP urged the Senate to immediately deploy its appropriate legislative instruments to reverse itself on the direct primary, adding that it is not operable and does not reflect the wishes and aspirations of the majority of Nigerians.

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