Chief Nwaka Inem, a chieftain of the All Progressives Grand Alliance(APGA) and the Director of Contact and Mobilization of the Alex Otti 2019 Governorship Campaign Organization, has lambasted the Abia chairman of the party, Reverend Augustine Ehiemere, over his alleged statement on the APGA petition challenging the outcome of the March 9 gubernatorial election conducted in the state.
It was reported that the All Progressives Grand Alliance(APGA), had disclosed that it was not aware of any petition filed by its governorship candidate in the just concluded 2019 general elections, Alex Otti before the tribunal, challenging the declaration by the Peoples Democratic Party’s candidate and the incumbent, Governor Okezie Ikpeazu by the Independent National Electoral Commission(INEC) as winner of the March 9 gubernatorial poll.
The Abia state chairman of APGA, Rev. Augustine Ehiemere, made this known while addressing newsmen in a press conference held at the party’s secretariats in Umuahia last month.
Reacting in an interview with reporters on Thursday afternoon, in Umuahia, the state capital, the APGA stalwart said, “It’s unfortunate that we are hearing that from him. If indeed, he made such a statement, it only goes to confirm the paucity and inherent deficiency in leadership characterising most political parties. I don’t know the game plan of the chairman, and what he intends to achieve. Immediately after the election, he was quoted as rightly saying that the elections were marred by irregularities and refused to accept the result. He had consistently labelled the governor as a failure.
“Few days after, he was seen eulogizing Okezie Ikpeazu and congratulating him for a well-deserved Victory. The turnaround is remarkable. Your guess is as good as mine, as to why after rejecting the results and asking for a rerun, he turned around to claim ignorance of the petition. Maybe, he is talking as a person and not as APGA chairman. To put the records straight, our Governorship petition was duly and properly signed by the party. If the chairman is unavailable, any other responsible member of the State Working Committee(SWC) can act on the party’s behalf”.
Inem added, “Right from my early days in electioneering politics, it is a common belief that when you aspire, pay nomination fees and other levies to the party, which sometimes run into millions these days, and eventually emerges as party candidate, the party automatically assumes responsibility of your campaign, elections and other associated challenges. Both winners and losers are likely to end up in the courts, especially in an election characterised by massive irregularities as seen in the last 2019 elections.
“What is expected of the Chairman, is to reach out to all our candidates that are either dragged to court or take others to court and show solidarity and support. That is the minimum required of a sincere and true head of the party”.