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Foreign Minister, Onyeama Risks Expulsion Over Anti-party Conducts

From Ignatius Okpara, Enugu

ENUGU, NIGERIA, (AFRICAN  EXAMINER) – The  Enugu chapter of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), has warned the Foreign Affairs Minister, Mr. Geoffrey Onyeama on the likely expulsion from the party owing to his alleged misconducts, including sowing the seed of discord within the party.

The State Chairman Dr. Ben Nwoye, stated this Tuesday while speaking with newsmen in Enugu, in reaction to a statement recently credited to Onyeama on issues concerning the party.

Onyeama, had told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) last weekend, that the crisis in the party in his home state Enugu, emanated from lack of transparency of the State Working Committee (SWC) in relation to funds from the party’s account as well as the delegates’ list that excluded some chieftains of the party.

Nwoye, advised the Minister to take time and study the APC constitution very well before arrogating to himself imaginary powers, insisting that the (latter) has done more harm than good to the party in Enugu state since he became Minister.

There has been contention over the list of Enugu delegates for the APC National convention, following the submission of an alleged fake list to the National secretariat of APC by the Minister and some aggrieved as well as suspended members of the party in the state.  

It would also be recalled that after the congress committee had submitted its list, which was okayed by the appeal panel, another version termed “harmonized delegates’ list” appeared in public domain through the Minister and his supporters, who could not make the authentic list.

Ever since the said harmonized list emerged, there ‎‎had been conjectures over who was actually behind it, as names of several persons who were reportedly absent during the congress were used to replace other members in the initial list.

‎But the Minister told NAN, “In fact, I don’t know some of these people (delegates), so when there were agitations over the list, I got a number of stakeholders and told them that we should harmonize the two lists so that everyone will be included.”

Nwoye stated that Onyeama’s action, as he personally admitted in the interview, was in breach of the party’s constitution, adding  “now that the Minister has admitted that he indeed doctored the party’s delegates’ list, we shall look at it.

According to the Chairman, “The punishment for such offence is expulsion from the party, if he is indeed the one that said that, he is liable for expulsion and possible prosecution.

“It goes to the heart of our democracy that those who participated in an election will have their names replaced.

“I’m shocked that the Minister did what he did in breach of Article 21 of our party’s constitution, which prohibits alteration of delegates’ list.

“It is viewed as an interference with the internal democracy. He admitted violation of our party’s constitution and tagged it ‘making peace’.

“We are aware that his PA passed N2m to two members of the congress committee. The one from Kano State was also sent to Meca; as we are speaking, he is in Saudi Arabia enjoying himself.

“Now, the Minister has turned himself into a judicial officer of the party. He should revert to the constitution of the party, not constituting himself into a supreme judge.‎”

Commenting on the 2015 election campaign fund, Nwoye declared that the Onyeama had no moral right to speak on the matter as he was not  even a member of the party as at the 2015 election, neither did he contribute a kobo to the exercise.

“The Minister neither campaigned with us nor contributed a kobo to the campaign fund. He does not even know the source of the fund.

“To now sit and assume the auditor in Chief of the party, he is just making mockery of himself. He misplaced these issues. He is the chief sponsor of this crisis.

“The Deputy Chairman led a coup de’tat and invaded the party secretariat and this same faction, led by A.C. Ude is what the Minister is working with, holding nocturnal meetings with them here and there.

“While Buhari was in London, the Minister was here holding meeting with the so-called ‘Integrity group’, which is said to be working for Atiku 2019. Though to their shame, Atiku later disowned them. But he is clearly working for Atiku’s 2019 interest, because it was his PA that called for that meeting on behalf of the Minister, and the Minister presided over it.”

While accusing the Minister of worsening the crisis in the party, he lambasted him for holding the meeting of the Enugu APC at the Foreign Affairs Ministry all in a bid to spite the leadership of the party.

“At that meeting held at his office on the 8th Floor of the Foreign Affairs Ministry, those in attendance told him the truth that he has no right to call meeting of Enugu APC in his office.

“Instead of taking the advice, he now came down to Enugu here, a day before our caucus meeting, for which he was formally invited, and called for a nocturnal meeting of APC stakeholders but he was disappointed as nobody showed up, except A.C Ude and other suspended members of the party.

“The Minister refused to show up at the caucus meeting, which held following day, and which was attended by all the members, except few that took permission. He never took permission nor sent a representative.

“So, he is working hard to divide and destroy the party for his selfish interest.” But we will resist that ” Nwoye declared.

 

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