Posted by News Express | 25 October 2015 | 2,876 times
A pressure group within the Kogi State All Progressives Congress (APC) has raised an alarm over an alleged plot by party members from a section of the state to sabotage the chances of the party’s candidate, Prince Abubakar Audu, in the impending Governorship Election in the state.
The group, Kogi East APC Youth Front (KEAYF) in a press statement issued in Lokoja by its Pesident, Dr Abimaje Ocheni and Secretary, Miss Grace Ebune, alleged that some party leaders from Kogi Central District were among other grievances blaming Prince Audu for the defeat of Ebira candidates at the party’s primaries and have covertly decided to work against the party.
“There are very disturbing evidence that a section of our party members acting an ethnic script are trying to pull back a moving train. Regrettably, this section, specifically the Ebiras of the Central Senatorial District, is deviously scheming under a diverse agenda to reverse all the advantages of our great party in the state.
“Ever since the resounding victory of Prince Abubakar Audu, the Adoja Attah-Igala, at our party’s primary election, members of the APC family from Kogi Central have not been at ease.
“First it was alleged that the sudden realisation that the combined votes of their candidates who were the first, second and third runners-up surpassed that of Adoja ignited a fresh sense of micro nationalism propelled more by regret than reason.”
KEAYF which is an Igala forum supporting Prince Audu’s candidature lamented that the plot was now so pervasive that the Central Senatorial APC rally was largely boycotted by members from the area.
Beside the group alleged that the first runner up at the primaries Alhaji Yahaya Bello who is Ebira had mounted and sustained a crusade to snatch Prince Audu’s ticket even when it was obvious that it is a fruitless mission.
“Then one of the candidates who came runners up picked up the gauntlet . . . in trying to reverse the victory of Adoja even when a change of candidate is now statute barred.
“All the propaganda of Adoja stealing N11 bilion and promising to return it can be traceable to this fellow obviously working with the enemies of the candidate.
“It was this same fellow who is behind the party’s appeal committee’s recommendation asking for the disqualification of Adoja on the ground of corruption even when he has not been convicted of anything.
“Even while it is clear that this fellow cannot get anywhere, he is unrelenting. It is therefore open to conclusion that he is playing the same ethnic card against Adoja.”
KEAYF lamented that the choice of a running mate in the person of Hon James Faleke an Okun-Yoruba from the Western Senatorial District is equally been tribalised and used to stoke animosity against Audu in the area with the claim that the candidate had already entered into a secret pact to shift power to the Okuns after his tenure.
While insisting Audu never entered into any such pact, the group however declared that in the spirit of justice and fairness the Okuns deserve to produce the next governor and not the Ebiras.
“The Ebiras have already previously enjoyed the position of governorship in a democratic arrangement in the person of Adamu Attah of blessed memory in the old Kwara State.
“However the closest the Okuns have come to the revered position is deputy, first by Chief Sam Akande and now Architect Yomi Awoniyi. But even in this regard the Ebiras have produced deputy governors in Kogi State for a total period of 13 years - 1999 to 2012 in the persons of Chief Patrick Adaba (1999 -2003) as Adoja’s deputy, and Philip Salawu who was deputy to Alhaji Ibahim Idris (2003 -2012). The tenure of the Okuns as deputy cumulatively amounts to only five years. Chief Sam Akande as Adoja’s deputy (1992 -1993) and Awoniyi (2012 – 2016).
The group appealed to Ebira members of the party to rise above ethnic sentiments and work for the success of the party and its candidate while warning that in the event that Prince Audu coasts to victory in spite of them they should not expect any special treatment.
“Perhaps we need to repeat the apt words of our leader, President Muhammadu Buhari, in the event that the Ebiras are unable to purge themselves of this hatred for our candidate and it ends up reflecting in the pattern of voting: ‘We cannot ignore the majority who vote for us to pander to the wishes of the minority who voted against us’.”
•Photo shows Abubakar Audu.
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