Over 7, 000 delegates, yesterday converged in the special convention of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), to affirm President Muhammadu Buhari’s candidature for the 2019 poll.
As early as 12noon, dozens of heavily armed security operatives had cordoned off major roads linking the Abuja Eagle Square, venue of the convention in a bid to ensure that nothing untoward occurs.
Delegates from the 36 states passed through rigorous accreditation processes in various locations, including the National Stadium and at the Old Parade Ground.
As has been the case with events of such nature in the past, scores of petty traders and food vendors took up strategic positions within the precinct of the venue to make brisk business, and they were heavily patronised by delegates and party supporters, who thronged Abuja in vehicles plastered with APC posters and those of President Buhari.
The convention earlier billed to commence at 12 noon yesterday, was rescheduled to 8 pm to enable delegates from states like Imo, Zamfara, Edo, FCT, and Adamawa where primaries were billed to hold earlier in the day to participate in the exercises.
President Buhari, the sole presidential aspirant of the party, was billed to deliver his acceptance speech by 1 am this morning
The convention notwithstanding, the crises rocking the party on several fronts appear far from being over as six Imo state governorship aspirants faulted the primary in their state.
Imo state deputy Governor, Prince Eze Madumere insisted that the result declared by Ahmed Gulak, which indicated that Senator Hope Uzodinma won the primaries should stand.
He maintained that the rescheduled primary had already been compromised adding: “I can tell you that there is nothing going on in Imo state.
The result as I speak, has already been written and waiting for submission today and we have totally rejected it and have already gone to court and the processes have already been served on the national chairman and all the relevant critical stakeholders of the party that we have rejected that and we will stand firm on that.”
Senator Ben Uwajimogu who spoke in the same vein noted: “ I am here to say that what is going on in the state is a charade.
From the point the panel was appointed, they were taken by the son in-law to the governor in a private jet to lmo State.
We did not meet any of them until yesterday night when they claimed they were going to have a stakeholders’ meeting and the governor used that opportunity to insult and assault all those that are opposed to his plan to install his Son in-law.
Hope Uzodinma said it would be sub-judice to conduct the primary again since there is a pending suit that had ordered a halt to the process.