From Tony John, Port Harcourt
Former lawmaker representing Rivers South-East senatorial district and chieftain of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Rivers State, Senator Magnus Abe, has declared that he had since left the party.
The lawmaker stated that he left the party because APC lacks the wherewithal to win the election in Rivers State.
Abe’s statement, which was on his Facebook account, came on the heels of a statement credited to him that he had written to the National Chairman of the party, Abdullahi Adamu, announcing his resignation as a member.
In the purported resignation letter, the lawmaker was quoted as saying that his decision to quit “is not unconnected with Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s seeming unwillingness to negotiate with me since he expects me to remain in the APC. Hence, my resolve to seek an alternative platform to actualize my gubernatorial ambition in Rivers State.”
But, in a swift reaction, Abe declared: “I didn’t author the purported resignation letter in circulation. But, everybody knows I had long left the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Rivers State. The party does not have what it takes to win elections in the state.”
Related: Magnus Abe resigns APC membership
However, the party (Chibuike Amaechi’s) has expressed that the exit of Abe and his supporters was inconsequential to APC in Rivers.
State Publicity Secretary of the party, Chris Finebone, in a statement issued yesterday, accused the former lawmaker of working with the ruling government and judiciary to deny APC the opportunity for participating in the 2019 election in the state.
Finebone noted: “It has also come to our notice that a few persons that are loyal to Senator Magnus Abe have also resigned recently. These are individuals who have, for the past couple of years, spoken and acted in every way to destroy the APC in Rivers State. Led by Abe, these persons tried all they could to factionalize our party in the State.
“The culmination of their evil machinations was the exclusion of Rivers APC from the ballot in 2019.
“Evidence exists how Senator Abe and his lieutenants broke into celebration the day the party was excluded by the court from participating in that election due to their litigation.”
According to Finebone, Senator Abe and his supporters had since concluded plans to join the Social Democratic Party (SDP), where he (Abe) wants to actualize his governorship ambition in the state.
Finebone observed: “However, it recently came to our attention that Senator Abe and the few persons still with him had concluded plans to join the Social Democratic Party (SDP) on whose platform Abe will run for governor, hence, their persistent hype to the effect that Abe will be on the ballot come 2023.
“In what appears to be a carefully planned exit plan, close associates of Abe started resigning from the APC and making heavy weather of their exit on social media as part of their exit plan as though they have been functional members of the party, just to hoodwink the public.
“This press conference is essentially to explain to you and the public that Rivers APC considers the formal exit of Abe and his associates from the APC as good riddance. We liken it to a successful excision of debilitating cancer from the body.
“Rivers APC can now heave a sigh of relief from the sustained destabilizing onslaught by Senator Abe. We wish him well as he joins the SDP. We pray that he takes everything he exhibited in APC particularly his nuisance value to his new party so that the world would see him for who he truly is.
“We make bold to state without an iota of doubt that Senator Abe and his supporters had, by their actions and utterances, long ceased to be functional members of APC. They shunned and refused to participate in the membership revalidation exercise that was carried out nationwide by the party.
“They also abstained from other legitimate activities of the party, making their recent purported resignation a mere formality and part of their face-saving exit strategy aimed at deceiving the public.
“We appreciate your understanding that there is no blanket exit or exodus of well-meaning members of Rivers APC. We believe that you and the public would appreciate that our party is, by far, better off without Abe and his motley supporters.”