A former president of the Nigerian Medical Association (NMA), and governorship aspirant of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Ondo State, Professor Francis Adedayo Faduyile, on Sunday, advocated direct primaries to elect the party’s standard-bearer.
Faduyile, who made the call while speaking to journalists in Akure, the state capital, said apart from the clamour by the majority of party’s members for direct primaries, he noted that the mode would provide a level-playing field for the aspirants.
According to him, state governor, Mr Rotimi Akeredolu, has also backed direct primaries, as the system will help to bring the crisis in the party to an end.
The professor of pathology called on the APC national leadership to respect the demand of the majority on the mode of primaries to be adopted to pick the party’s standard-bearer for the next election.
He said: “I have not seen any aspirant who has come out openly and say that he doesn’t want direct primary, even the incumbent has said that he will defeat anybody if it is direct or indirect. If he wants direct, let us go for it. I will say all aspirants in the party are comfortable with direct mode of primary.
“I think the National Working Committee (NWC) has agreed that it should be by direct mode and if that is the case we are very happy with it and I will want to encourage them to let us go and test our popularity.
“I’ll abide by the decision made by the NWC of our party which is the organ saddled to decide. But looking at the previous primaries, coming from Edo State, it’s direct, Imo State was direct, Bayelsa was direct, Osun and Lagos were direct. What I’m sure about is that we have two state exco. The state has two parallel executive bodies.”
Faduyile alleged moves by some elements to induce party leaders and prospective voters in a bid to subvert the will of people.
Faduyile said that virtually all the sectors in the state were begging for attention, hence the need to rescue the state from its present condition by someone with capabilities.
“We have gone to places that naturally should take about 30 minutes and we have to wriggle ourselves out maybe in 45 minutes and sometimes, as much as an hour and I really feel sorry for the citizens of the state. Another issue is the large number of our youths that have been disenchanted. You see a lot of our teeming youths who have been largely unemployed and have lost confidence in themselves. Many specialist hospitals are not fit to be called so as they lack the necessary equipment. Many of them do not have incubators and they do not have the number of the needed regular staff compliments,” he said.