Romanus Ugwu, Abuja
South East candidates of the All Progressives Congress (APC) who ran House of Assembly races, under the aegis of the ‘Conference of 2019 Southeast APC House of Assembly Candidates’, have placed the failure of the party in the region on the negative actions of regional party leaders.
Rising from a meeting held in Abuja last weekend, the Conference accused the party leaders of anti-party activities, alleging that most of them did not only campaign for the opposition parties but also negotiated with state governors to give 25 per cent of the votes to the party’s presidential candidate, President Muhammadu Buhari.
In a communique issued by spokesperson Jude Okpor and signed by the duo of Toochukwu Onyedibe and Confidence Chukwuedozie, Coordinator and Secretary, respectively, the Conference noted with dissatisfaction the outcome of the National Assembly leadership election, raising concerns over what they see as the imbalance on the composition of legislature’s new leadership.
The communique read:
“The Conference noted with dismay the negative activities of some leaders of the party in the zone which contributed to the unimpressive performance of the party in the South-east. Most of them are guilty of anti-party activities. They neglected the candidates of the party, campaigned for the opposition party candidates and even went into unholy alliances with the state governors to give our presidential candidate 25 per cent, forgetting that we have all it takes to win the election.
“That we noted with dissatisfaction the outcome of the National Assembly leadership election and raised concern of the imbalance on the composition of the new leadership. That the conference expresses optimism in the growth and improved performance of the party in the zone and urge all organs of the party on the need for proactive programmes and early preparation towards the next elections.
“For equity, fairness and growth of the party in the South-East, the conference is appealing to our dear President Buhari and the National leadership of the APC to urgently address the concern of the people of South-east on inclusive governance so as to promote national cohesion.
“We commend the party in setting up Committee on the Review of Anti party activities during the last general election and urge the Party leadership to implement fully the report of the committee especially as it concerns the South-east zone. With the believe that the committee will be unbiased in the discharge of their duties in order to restore party discipline and loyalty with a view to repositioning the party in the zone,” the communique read.
In a paper he delivered during the meeting, titled ‘Understanding Politics and the Nigerian Political Environment: the South East Perspective’, media expert and House of Representative candidate, Vinmartin Obiora Ilo, listed a “lack of leadership, greed, primordial sentiment, marginalization, lack of a sense of history, ethnic dislike and suspicion, infrastructural deficit, lack of strategy and constructive engagement as the challenges facing the zone.
“The way forward for these challenges are unity of purpose, emergence of a new leadership, define agenda and shared goals/objective, develop a workable strategy for engaging the rest of Nigeria, political education and synergy of South East energies,” Ilo said.