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APC Congress: Foreign Affairs Minister Under Fire over Moves to Doctor Enugu List

‎From  Ignatius  Okpara, Enugu

(AFRICAN EXAMINER) – Federal political Appointees from Enugu state, South-East Nigeria, led by Minister of foreign Affairs,  Geoffrey Onyeama, have been accused of making  desperate move to replace the authentic list of delegates in the just concluded non elective local government congress of the ruling All progressive Congress, APC held in the state, earlier submitted to the National Secretariat of the party, by the congress Committee.

African Examiner gathered from a source close to the party’s national headquarters that the accused    Enugu state born Abuja politicians, who could not make the delegate list, have been allegedly trying to induce some of the party officials whom they believe would assist them have their way.

It would be recalled that the ruling APC, had on 29th July, 2017, held a Local Government congress across Nigeria, where delegates for its forthcoming  national convention emerged.

At the end of the exercise, the Enugu state, four-man congress committee members  from its headquarters in Abuja, had addressed news men  at the party’s secretariat in Enugu ,during which  they okayed the election and asked aggrieved member to channel their grievances to the appeal committee.

Our Correspondent reports that after the congress, on 29th July, a three-man appeal committee led by Barrister Ali Nyelog, from Plateau state, arrived Enugu on Monday, the 30th, to receive petitions from aggrieved party members.

Following non receipt of any petition from any member of the party, after three days, the committee ratified the election and wrote its report.

The report which was signed by the three members, namely, Barrister Ali Nyelong, chairman, Hon. Fatima Abdulkareem Alladey, (Secretary) and Hon. Abubakar A. Imam member,  and obtained by African Examiner read thus:  “The appeal committee arrived Enugu on 30th July at the State Party office located at 126 Park Avenue, GRA, Enugu, where the committee met and held a brief meeting with the Party chairman, Dr. Ben Nwoye, who was instructed to convey and inform aspirants (contestants) of our party to intimate them of our presence and to let them know that the committee would start her work on the next day by 9 a.m.

“On Monday 31st July, 2017, the committee sat from 9:30 to 7 pm without any complain or appeal from any person. On 1st August 2017, the committee also extended her sitting and got the same result (ie no complain or appeal).

“Having sat for two days in Enugu State APC party office without any petition or appeal, the appeal committee herby considers the Local Government congress held in the State to be free and fair without contention and upholds the result.

“Attached for your further confirmation is the original statement of result as collated by the congress committee, signed, sealed and delivered.”

The original result which was obtained  by Our Correspondent,  was signed by the four members of the election committee sent from the APC national secretariat for the purpose of the congress.

They are, Hon. Hussaini Ibrahim (Chairman), Hon. Sani Adamu Dugge (Secretary), Mrs. Chinyere Okwara (Member) and Hon. Kabiru Haruna Getso (member).

But, few days after the list was submitted to the national headquarter of the APC, another delegate list purportedly packaged  by two members of the same committee appeared at the APC national secretariat, a development that raised serious dust .

The  list, which African Examiner learnt is under investigation by the APC leadership in Abuja, was termed “The harmonized List prepared from the original copy of two groups in Enugu State.” and was endorsed  by Kabiru Getso Haruna and Mrs. Chinyere Okwara, who also appended their signatures in the earlier original  list submitted to the APC leadership.

However, the two lists indicates  that a lot of politicians who did not participate in the  congress, such  as foreign Affairs Minister, Onyeama, Special Adviser to president Buhari on Judicial Reform, Mrs. Juliet Ibekaku had their names smuggled into the alleged harmonised  list.

In  Udi council  Area for instance,  where Mr. Osita Okechukwu, the Director General of Voice of Nigeria VON, a former Enugu state Woman Leader of the peoples Democratic party PDP, now APC member,  Mrs. Oby Nwofor, and Hon. Magnus Ozongwu participated in the congress  and emerged victorious, their names were replaced with Ibekaku and Minister Onyeama in the smuggled list, even when the two Appointees apart from Okechukwu were conspicuously absent during the congress.

Ibekaku’s name was smuggled into the questionable list, even when she is still serving the suspension slammed on her, the state Deputy chairman, Adolphus Udeh, and among others, over alleged anti-party activities by the party in the state

Members of the party in the state are insisting that the presidential Aide,  was not supposed to be a card-carrying member of any political party, because she is  still a staff of the nation’s anti graft agency, the  Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, and that she was on secondment to the ministry of justice.

Also, in Awgu Local Government Area, the party’s major financier in Enugu State, Emperor Chris Baywood Ibe had his name expunged from the original list. None of the three persons elected in Awgu made the new list prepared by the Abuja politicians.

According to the Source, “the new list being paraded within the secretariat emanated from some Abuja politicians from Enugu State, including that of Awgu, where the party’s major financial in the state, chief Baywood Ibe, hails from.

He said “they have been trying to substitute the original list with it but that has not worked; they tried to bribe their way through the office of the national chairman but it has not worked; they have also tried to smuggle it in through the office of the national organizing secretary but that has not worked either.

“We learnt that some of the committee members collected N2m from the said politicians, with a promise that they will held them substitute the authentic list but that will not happen.

“Harmonization is not done after an election; most of them refused to participate in the election, now they want to go behind and substitute those that clearly won their elections. It is not going to happen.”

However, when African Examiner contacted, Mrs. Okwara, who is also the woman leader of APC in Imo  state on  phone, on  the allegation of inducement, and why she signed the controversial harmonized and original  lists,  she said “please, am not interested, don’t disturb me on  that issue, please, please.

Effort to get the reaction of  Kabiru, who is the state secretary of a faction of APC in Kano state, met a brick wall as he did not respond to text message sent to his mobile phone, just as the foreign Affair’s Minister could not respond.

 

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