2019: PDP blasts APC for fielding a prisoner in election


The Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, on Tuesday, blasted the ruling All Progressives Congress, APC, for admitting a serving prisoner for its primary election in the preparations for the 2019 general elections. The opposition party described the action as “shocking, strange and embarrassing.”

National Daily gathered that Ben Shignugul, PDP Vice Chairman, Plateau Central, in Jos, declared in a media interaction that: “It is shocking that a convict serving a 14-year jail term will be given a nomination form to contest an election. This is just ridiculous.”

Shignugul had observed: “The nomination form has a portion which requests aspirants to state whether they were once convicted; I wonder what information Dariye provided in that column.

“He is our illustrious son and we sympathise with him. We expect him to be sober and reflect on what has happened to him, instead of allowing himself to be dragged around by desperate politicians.”

Shignugul noted that the Plateau PDP executive council, led by the State Chairman, Damishi Sango, recently visited Dariye in Kuje prisons and prayed for him.

“We still pray that he will serve out his 14-year jail term and come out in good health.

“Dariye should equally be praying, instead of attracting unnecessary attention to himself,’’ Shignugul stated.

The PDP Vice Chairman, Plateau Central, cited that section 107 sub-section 1 (d) of the Nigeria Constitution 1999 as amended, states that “no person shall be qualified for election if, within a period of less than 10 years before the date of election, he has been convicted and sentenced for an offence involving dishonesty.”

He maintained that the section also states that “anyone that has been found guilty of contravening the code of conduct shall not be allowed to contest election.”

Shignugul, thereafter, noted: “Dariye cannot be a threat to us because people in the zone are already fed up with him after eight years as governor and two terms in the senate.”

in the case of Iyiola Omisore of the PDP in Osun State, he was in detention undergoing investigation. Omisore was not convicted then. So, the cases are different and cannot justify APC’s breach of the electoral laws.