Battle for the Soul of APGA

By Nkiru Chukwube on 10/04/2015

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Obiano and Peter Obi

When in 2003 general election, the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) stepped its foot on the political terrain of Nigeria, little did the country know that the party had a mission.

The mission was to have a political party that has at back of its mind the desire to stand in as an alternative for the Igbos to actualize their ambition of producing the president of the country.

At a point the party became a mass movement and it was touted in 2003 general elections of the five South Eastern States.

However the party was only able to recover Anambra state which led to the eight years tenure of the then governor Mr. Peter Obi.

They also made a foray to Imo and Abia States respectively, but later lost the two governors Rochas Okorocha and Theodore Orji to the All Progressives Congress(APC)and the people’s Democratic party (PDP) respectively.

It however retained Anambra State with Gov Willie Obiano as the incumbent governor while reaching out to other States in the zone ahead of the governorship election in the country.

However since the exit of Mr Peter Obi the party seems to have taken its destiny in its hand and build solid political structures for its sustenance.

Ironically the former governor who roe on the platform of APGA to firm is currently receiving knocks over allegations that he is masterminding all operations to send APGA to the dust bin of history.

The recent general election in Anambra appears to be a pointer to those allegations going by the manner the National Assembly elections were conducted and its outcome.

The party won only two seats out of the eleven federal House of Representatives seats in the state and did not win any senatorial seat.

Apparently political watchers have alleged that the outcome of the two elections was a manifestation that the Peoples Democratic party(PDP) won those seats by default.

They further argue that it is a deliberate plan to permanently exterminate the party and ultimately celebrate its demise in the country.

Similarly Gov Willie Obiano in a State broadcast over the election confirmed this grand plan following what he called the systematic way the elections were rigged.

"It is disturbing in the sense that even though the abusive act of thuggery was perpetrated in the current election, it re-awakened in the consciousness of Ndi Anambra, a sad feeling of the return of impunity for which Anambra earned bad name in Nigeria years ago. Beyond the election, the act of brigandage throws up a worrisome concern for governance, that the forces that had insidiously given refuge to all kinds of perverse conducts in Anambra State, namely armed robbery, kidnapping and excesses in high places, are rearing their ugly heads again.

  

 
“That anti-democracy elements, who are also notable figures of the PDP were directly involved in manipulating the electoral process in key areas of the state, kidnapping INEC officials, hijacking the results from polling stations and re-writing the actual figures in favour of PDP candidates. A good case in point is the incident in Ihiala Local Government where an attempt to stop some PDP elements from altering the results of the voting exercise led to the death of two Nigerians – a police man and an innocent citizen. What is instructive in this incident is that citizen Ifeanyi Ubah, the Chairman of TAN, accompanied by Mr.Olisa Metuh, PDP National Publicity Secretary, were allegedly physically present at the scene of the incident. 
 
“That  we rejected in its entirety the purported results of the election in Anambra East/Anambra West and Ayamelum/Oyi  Federal Constituencies and state that we are still studying the report about what actually happened during the March 28, 2015 Presidential and National Assembly elections in the said constituencies, and shall make our position known after consultations with the National Leadership of our great party the PDP. 
 
Also, National chairman of APGA, Sir Victor Umeh who lost his Anambra Central senatorial election described the exercise as a charade.

 Umeh chided PDP for being indolent to the extent of repeating a rigging trick it used 12 years ago and worse still, spear-headed by the very victim of that rigging style, Mr. Peter Obi. 
 
Umeh who said he is heading to the election [petition tribunal said he has all the polling unit election results, otherwise known as Forms EC8A1with which to argue his case and reclaim his victory. 
 
According to him, he, and the three House of Representatives candidates in the Senatorial district, namely: Chief Godson Ezenagu, Mr. Ferdinand Dozie Nwankwo and Ifeanyi Ibezi all won their election according to the Forms EC8A1 in his possession. 
 
Dubem Obaze, the Anambra North senatorial candidate for the party joined voice to Umeh’s voice while reecho how APGA mandates were ripped off by the PDP.

Furthermore, he said that they nearly attacked the state Governor, Chief Willie Obiano, alleging that the personal staff of the PDP candidate worked as INEC officer in Ogbaru.
He said what happened on March 28 in Ogbaru and Anambra North senatorial zone was a shame and exactly what happened in some years back. 
According to Obaze, “what we heard here in the state was not an election, it is actually a shame that we have gone back to the old way in the state.

“Drivers in collaboration with INEC and PDP, refused to transport materials to their designated centres on the day, until late in the evening which gave room to manipulation everywhere.
 
“We also, found out that even the materials that were brought by INEC; there were no ballot papers, result sheets, while the security operatives shielded the PDP candidates who perpetrated the act.

  
“Because we are law abiding people , we did not resort to shooting, thuggery but as peace loving people, and responsible, we are calling for total cancellation.
“In the first place, PDP did not have any candidate in the state because they had not sorted their matter in their party before the Election Day” Obaze said.
 
However the state House of Assembly election seems to be the only opportunity for the party to redeem its image and save the party from dying a permanent death.

State chairman of APGA Chief Mike Kwenthoh  told reporters that “No body can kill APGA , we have wrote petitions to tribunal and it is a question of time all those elections that the Independent National Electoral Commission(INEC) declared in favour of PDP would be recovered.
“Our party is poised towards ensuring that the only voice for the people is not killed and that is APGA and no other political party” those who feel that if they leave the party it would die, are only making a mistake and in due time would be proved wrong”.

 

Source Whirlwindnews

Posted on April, 10 2015

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