The Senator, representing Ekiti Central District and aspirant for the All Progressives Congress (APC) governorship ticket for Ekiti State, Opeyemi Bamidele said he preferred the direct mode of primary election.
According to Bamidele, direct primary is a way of ensuring participatory democracy, which makes it possible for every card-carrying member of the party to participate in the decision-making process and for the most popular aspirant to emerge.
The lawmaker who stated this while addressing journalists after submitting his expression of interest and nomination forms at the APC National Secretariat in Abuja on Friday said that the method of nomination also gives a lot of impetus to the rank-and-file members of the party who feel proud that they were part of the decision-making process.
“That instantly gives them the enthusiasm that is needed for them to be able to even actively participate in the general election campaign, that’s my preference. That’s my choice. It does not really mean that if the party chooses the indirect mode of primaries or any other one, it will not foreclose me from participating.
But as an individual, that is my preference but I believe direct primaries is a way of giving power back to the people. So, I really feel that the leadership of the party, will take whatever decision that is in the best interest of the party,” he said.
Bamidele noted that the refusal of President Muhamadu Buhari not to sign the Electoral Act Amendment Bill on logistics concerns about direct primary election can not apply to using the mode in one or two states.
“Basically, the refusal of Mr. President to sign (Electoral Act) also is not because the President is fundamentally opposed to direct mode of primaries but because of some logistics concerns.
“But the good thing about it is if you do direct primaries in an isolated election holding in Ekiti or holding in Osun which would be the only election in the country by the time is holding, I don’t think that’s a kind of logistics concern that would offset anything or cause pain for anyone,” he said.
The Chairman, Senate Committee on Judiciary, Human Rights and Legal Matters disclosed that he has done a tour of the 16 local government areas in Ekiti to solicit for the support of party faithful and that he would continue with consultations of stakeholders and party members, expressing hope to emerge as APC Ekiti governorship candidate.