The senator representing Ebonyi Central Senatorial District, Obinna Ogba, has opposed direct primaries, captured in the just-passed Electoral Amendment Bill. He said he is supporting the position of his party, the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) on the issue.
Ogba stated this while reacting to reports that senators from both the All Progressives Congress and the PDP had united to embrace the direct primary as the only mode of primary for political parties.
The senator, who spoke with newsmen at the National Assembly, said he was not in the country when the final amendments to the 2010 Electoral Act (amendments) Bill 2021 were passed.
He, however, said his position on the mode of primary was not different from that of his party which had consistently insisted that the National Assembly should not force a single method on the parties.
The senator said he was quoted out of context recently when a report on him indicated that he was in support of direct primary.
‘I am surprised when I was quoted to have said that the governors can’t buy delegates in a direct primary,’ he said.
‘I respect my party as a loyal PDP man. The governors in the PDP are in support of the party position on the issue. I couldn’t have made any statement against my party or our governors.
‘I have been winning elections in my party with indirect primary and I can still win if the party agreed that we should adopt the direct method.
‘I know that I will no longer have a say on the issue if the President sign the Electoral Bill into law but as it is now, I abide by whatever decision taken by my party on it.
‘I don’t know whether some people are afraid of direct primary or not but if I contest under whatever method I will win,’ he said.