Geoffrey Anyanwu, Awka
A founding member of APGA, Chief Sylvester Nwobualor speaks on the crisis rocking the party. He warns that Governor Willie Obiano would eventually dump the party
What’s really happening to APGA?
I did a forecast some years ago, if you were around here 10 years or thereabout, you must have noticed my reaction to what was happening in the party. I even took Victor Umeh to court to vacate his seat, which he occupied then illegally. Tenure of office of party then was a maximum of eight years. You spend four years in the first term and if you want to continue, you stay another four years and after which you cannot be there anymore. But Victor continued and then he was so authoritarian, he was so difficult to deal with, he was the landlord of the party and it’s all and all. And we said no, you can’t continue to do that. This party belongs to all of us and some of us actually contributed morally and financially in setting up this party for the interest of the Igbo nation, but now, one man is running the party. This cannot continue. The crises were on for some years actually, because he refused to vacate. The party is nowhere again. It’s been run down in bits and pieces. It will require a spiritual effort to take it back to normalcy.
So this was not the APGA you people dreamt of at that time?
Definitely not! There was definite policy in the party hierarchy and there was definite internal democracy in operations. People were respecting the rules in the party because we knew that the Igbo nation required a strong party, which is not just a political party, it’s an organization that is working for the interest of the Igbo nation and we were not playing with it. But today, it’s just terrible what is happening. You can see the party is rocking into bits and pieces and I do not see what will happen unless, like I said, we invoke the spirits to come and restore normalcy because God won’t listen to us. No point saying let’s pray to God. God won’t listen to us because we offended God in its totality.
Are you saying there is no hope for APGA again, or is there anything you think could be done to save the party now?
The problem is that people who are running the party now and before now are not prepared to leave. They are always there, they are always manipulating; they are always destroying. So, we don’t have basis for reconciliation. It’s everybody to his own tent. Unless God will have mercy on us and come to our aid in spite of our bad behaviour, our bad intentions and all that negate trust. Any party or any organisation that must make success and survive, must imbibe the tenets of democracy, the tenets of justice, the tenets of equity, the tenets of good conscience.
Do you still have love for that party? Do you still have interest in the party?
The policy is very good. We started it. We invested money, we invested all interests, we invested everything you can think of, but we are now regretting our investment except that people who are coming or who came to make money and name roped the thing into deep sea. It’s painful, but we cannot do anything now. I still have the intent of the party at heart, not the name. Name means nothing. APGA means nothing, but the intent was something that will bring the Igbo together, something that will be credited to people who are knowledgeable and people who are prepared to die so that the Igbo may live but it’s been overtaken by people who are not interested in the Igbo agenda; those interested in leadership, they want to be governor, they want to be national chairman, they want to be state chairman and all that. . The present governor moves out, all good things about the party will move out with him and then, we will sing hallelujah.