By Alli Gideon
The current stalemate in the nomination of a Deputy-Governorship candidate for the 2019 governorship race in Benue State is on account of a purported zoning of the position to Otukpo Local Government Area by a few Idoma elders. In 2014, exigencies of the situation got the Benue APC leader, Senator George Akume to consider Engr. Benson Abounu as Deputy Governor. This was not because it was zoned to Otukpo. It is, therefore, only laughable that Idoma elders alongside other members of the screening committee used this as a yardstick to limit their search for Deputy Governorship nominee to Otukpo LGA and in the process, end up with nomination of two feuding personalities for the position.
This is reminiscent of a similar exercise in 1999 when the two nominees, one from Ado and the other from Otukpo disagreed and the elders, led by wisdom, ceded the position to the aspirant from Obi LGA and peace was restored. This should guide APC leaders in the current stalemate.
The only means of truce in the current logjam is nomination outside of Otukpo LGA. There are many credible aspirants in the race that merit nomination. They include Bernard Ochepa and John Ochoga (Ado) and Agbo Oga (Ohimini).
Idoma elders have failed the party in the nomination exercise. Let the leadership of the party in the state take over and restore peace by looking beyond the two feuding nominees. APC must get it right or risk losing next year’s election to the opposition. Now is the time for truce. Let us have a nominee from either Ado or Ohimini.
Mr Alli Gideon wrote as Coordinator of Alliance For the Defence of APC, (AfDA)