Romanus Ugwu, Abuja
Factional members of the All Progressives Congress (APC) Cross River state chapter, have defied the directives from President Muhammadu Buhari and the Caretaker/Extra-Ordinary National Convention Planning Committee, by refusing to withdraw the fresh case instituted against the immidiate past APC National Vice Chairman (South South), Hilliard Eta.
President Buhari had during the recent emergency virtual National Executive Committee (NEC) meeting appealed to party members to withdraw all pending cases at various courts as a way of reconciling various waring factions within the party.
Reechoing the President’s directives, the chairman APC Caretaker Committee, Governor Mai Mala Buni, had during the inauguration of the committee members at the party’s national secretariat in Abuja recently equally appealed to party members.
However, despite the directives, a faction of Cross River APC has remained very adamant because as at June 24, 2020 they are yet to withdraw the litigated status of the immidiate past National Vice Chairman at the Federal High Court of Nigeria in the Calabar Judicial Division.
Still pending in the court is a suit with file no: FHC/CA/CS/52/2020, filed by Ushie Eneji and Euginia Takon against Ntufam Eta, the APC, INEC, and IGP seeking an order of perpetual injunction restraining Eta from parading himself either as the national vice chairman South-South Zone or as acting national chairman or as a holder of any office of the second defendant, until his suspension from the membership of the second defendant by his ward is lifted.
The State Executive Committee of the APC, Cross River State had dismissed Eta’s suspension by the state party.
The executives had maintained that for purpose clarification, the said letter does not emanate from the party either is there any plan whatsoever to suspend the aforementioned party leader.
The statement signed by the state publicity secretary, Bassey Ita and made available to newsmen in Abuja, dissociated the state executive from the said letter or publication.
“Cross River State has been drawn to a trending media report following a letter signed by one Chief Francis Ekpenyong alluding to the purported suspension of Ntufam Hilliard Eta by the party Exco.
‘’While we dissociate from the said letter or publication, we want to draw the attention of the public to the fact that the signatory to the said letter is known to be a dissident whose stock in trade is to cause mischief in the party for his commercial gains,” it read.
However, instead of complying with the directive and following the footstep of the immidiate past National chairman, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole, who withdrew all his pending cases in court, the factional Cross River APC members, have adamantly refused to withdraw the case instituted against Hilliard Eta,