With all of Nigeria unsure about whether there was going to be another primary election to choose the APC governorship flagbearer for Lagos, the presidency waded in to save the day,
President Muhammadu Buhari and Vice President Yemi Osinbajo took the wind from under the sails of the National Working Committee (NWC) panel for the election, by asking APC Chairman Adams Oshiomhole to respect the first set of results which saw Babajide Sanwoolu running away with majority of the votes cast.
Buhari and Osinbajo monitored the primary election
A top ranking official of the APC disclosed that “after multiple briefings and monitoring of the election in Lagos, Abuja advised the leadership of the APC to stand with the people and respect their wishes.
"President Buhari also requested for periodic briefings throughout the day of the primary and at a point, invited Chairman Oshiomhole to brief him on Lagos and other primaries”.
Vice President Osinbajo, who had been accused by a faction of the Sanwoolu camp of trying to manipulate the vote in favour of incumbent Governor Akinwunmi Ambode, also played a prominent role in avoiding a rerun.
Our source continued: “The Vice President also received periodic briefings and stayed glued to his television set. Osinbajo advised the national chairman not to ignore the fact that Lagos APC members trooped out in hundreds and thousands to vote.
“He maintained that it is important not to ignore the people. All of these turned the tide with the announcement that
Sanwoolu beats Ambode with the widest of margins
The Clement Ebri led NWC panel had moved to cancel the results of the election and announce a new date for a rerun, when Oshiomhole overruled them and declared that the results be upheld.
Governor Ambode who had lost the support of APC godfather Bola Ahmed Tinubu and his party’s grassroots structure weeks before the primary election, lost the vote by a wide margin and won’t be getting a ticket to govern Nigeria’s commercial capital, at the second time of asking.
The Chairman of the APC in Lagos, Tunde Balogun, declared Sanwoolu the winner of the election at about 8pm on Tuesday, October 2.
Balogun said: “I am aware that conflicting information has been circulating on our primary election, but I must tell you that the election was held and it was free and fair.
“It would be very painful to disenfranchise the over 1.5 million members who voted across the 245 wards in the state.
“At the end of the exercise, Mr Babajide Sanwoolu polled 970, 851 votes and Gov. Akinwunmi Ambode scored 72, 901 votes. With this, Mr. Babajide is declared winner."
Pulse can report that Ebri has officially declared Sanwoolu winner of the Lagos APC primary.