Raphael Ede, Enugu
As reactions continued to trial the ward congress of the All Progressives Congress (APC), held last Saturday, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr. Geoffrey Onyeama, has called for cancellation of the Enugu result saying that the exercise was highly flawed.
Onyeama made the call as the faction led by the Director General of Voice of Nigeria, VON, Mr. Osita Okechukwu described the exercise as ‘peaceful and transparent’.
Briefing newsmen at the Golden Royal Hotel, on Monday, in company of the Special Adviser to the President on Judicial Reform, Juliet Ibekaku, and other chieftains of the party, the Minister alleged that the election materials and party officials sent to conduct the congress absconded with the election materials.
He said up till the time of the briefing he, as the leader of the party in Enugu State, has neither seen officials sent from Abuja nor has he seen the election materials.
According to Onyeama, “As I speak, I have not seen material for this congress neither have I seen the officials from Abuja who supposed to monitor the congress.
“I am supposed to be the leader of this party in Enugu State but, I can tell you that I didn’t see officials who supposed to conduct the congress or even know them”, stressing that irrespective of that the congress went on.
“The congress was very heart-worming, you can see the enthusiasm of the people who came out here and every transparent process of voting. I am very happy and satisfied with what we have seen.
“I have come here to preach peace and transparency. We don’t believe in grabbing power at all cost. Mr. President has said it a million and one times that we don’t believe in having a non-transparency process.
“So I have come here to witness the process by myself, to be part of the process and make sure it is an inclusive and transparent. That is what we have come here to do”.
In a swift reaction, the chairman of the party, Dr. Ben Nwoye, said that the election was transparent stressing that he was rejected by his people.
In the words of Nwoye, “It is on record that Enugu State have the most peaceful and transparent congress throughout the country. The issue of the Ward congresses have been done and settled.
“So, the Minister should stop complaining because he is not the of the party in Enugu State,” he said.
Meanwhile, the VON DG, in his reaction, described the congress as peaceful and rancor free.
His words, “To the best of my knowledge neither was anybody marginalized nor any material hijacked. Please ask anybody who complains of marginalization to show you the Bank Slip he used to buy forms and was denied buying forms?
“For the forms can also be bought from either the national or state secretariat. Mrs Juliet Ibekaku Nwagu, and his hatchet man, Ejike Njeze, for instance deliberately alienated the grassroots party structures and hoped to reap where they didn’t sew.
“Is it possible to win from Abuja? Njeze kept deceiving my brother the Hon Minister of Foreign Affairs; His Excellency, Geofrey Onyeama. telling him all manner of lies. He made him to come late to the Ward Congress, 1pm after the Congress has ended.
“We recover our brother from them Methinks lessons had been learnt for those who lived on assumption, for assumption is mother of all mistakes.
“All the major stakeholders, from our elder statesmen, His Excellencies – Jim Nwobodo, Ken Nnamani, Emma Eneukwu, Emperor Baywood Ibe to Group Capt Orji, are all commending the peaceful and successful Ward Congress.
“And only a handful are complaining. As they say the majority will surely have their way and minority will have their say”, Okechukwu said.