Marginalizing Party Big Wigs Sparks Crisis in Ebonyi APC

The crisis is currently rocking the Ebonyi State wing of All Progressives Congress (APC), President Muhammadu Buhari’s party that has been dominating the affairs of Nigeria since 2015.

Governor Dave Umahi and some political potentates of the party are at logger heads over the dissolution, reconstitution of caretaker committee and party registration exercise.

The APC potentates, mostly foundation members, are irked that after all their labour to build the party since 2014, the national leadership decided to throw their weight behind Umahi and his cohorts, who just defected to the party a few months ago, describing it as illegal and unconstitutional.

Chief Silas Oketa, Hon Linus Nweze and Chief Ogbu Joseph Nweke, in a petition on behalf of concerned Ebonyi State APC stakeholders and concerned foundation members, averred that based on NEC 4th resolution, the elected APC state executives led by Chief Eze Nwachukwu Eze, Jeff Ogbu and others still remained the valid leaders of the party in the state.

The petition is signed by the legal firm of Ndah Kato & Co chambers of Adonkolo, Lokoja, Kogi state and dated January 15, 2021.

The petitioners are alleging that the appointment of Stanley Okoro, a serving Commissioner in Ebonyi, as Caretaker Committee Chairman of APC in the state was in breach of the resolutions of the National Executive Committee (NEC) meeting of December 8, 2020.

They also explained that during the NEC meeting, the party resolved and approved the dissolution of all the party organs, and in its 4th resolution, unanimously approved the reconstitution and the composition of the dissolved executives to serve in their respective offices on a caretaker committee capacity.

Furthermore,  they argued that following the unanimous decision of NEC, it was clear that the elected APC Excos led by Eze Nwachukwu Eze, Jeff Ogbu and others still remained the valid APC Caretaker Committee in Ebonyi, by virtue of the NEC 4th resolution.

They are therefore, expressing worry that defectors, who are yet to formally register as members of the APC in Ebonyi, are now treating the foundation members as inconsequential, boasting openly that they have taken over the party structures.

Describing their action as the height of impunity, which could lead to implosion, the petitioners alleged that they are grand plans by the so-called imposters from Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to hijack materials meant for APC membership registration and revalidation exercising the state.

Maintaining that APC constitution remains the ground norm which guides the party and its members, the petitioners reminded the party leadership in Abuja that the “APC resolution unanimously reached on December 8, 2020 is still valid and subsisting and no member(s) of the party, no matter how highly placed, can by use of arbitrary fiat, deception; unconventional and illegal method, impose, or adopted the purported APC Caretaker Committee led by Stanley Okoro.

“In view of the above circumstance, we have our clients instruction to appeal and demand that the foundation APC members who suffered with the party during trying moments should not be sidelined or treated as underdogs by the leadership just as new defectors be called to order.”

They are equally demanding that the Exco led by Eze, Ogbu and others be recognised and be related with as APC Caretaker Committee in Ebonyi, adding that on “no account should the purported APC Caretaker Committee led by Okoro be accorded any recognition or related with in Ebonyi, as action nor duty assigned to or performed by them remains a void act and an illegality which may hurt, affect the future fortunes of the party in Ebonyi.”

Any attempt to the contrary by the leadership of the party, will amount to “act of impunity or illegality and a void act that may plunge the party into unnecessary bickering, leadership crisis or log-jam”, disclosing that it could lead to litigation.

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