JUST IN: APC postpones screening of presidential aspirants

From PETER OKORE, Umuahia

The All Progressives Congress (APC) says the party is moving towards reconciling all existing warring factions in the party in all the states of the federation, before its proposed National Convention scheduled to hold next month (February).

Chairman of the 2022 APC Special State Congress Committee for Abia state, Hon. Kolawale Babatunde, who dropped this hint in Umuahia, while announcing the results of the state Congress, said that the party cannot afford to go for the National convention in factions.

He said reconciliation committees have been dispatched to states where factions existed to harmonize contending issues and report back to the National Headquarters in Abuja, pointing out that the crux of the whole crisis is all about “interests”.

‘It is good we have a good leader of the party, in the person of Gov. M.M. Buni of Yobe state, who is out for reconciliation of factions,” he said.

In pursuance of the new move of the APC, a Special State congress of the Party was held in Abia state , last Saturday, to fill the vacancy created by the sudden death of the former Chairman, Mr. Enyinnaya Harbor, who was elected in October 2021 but died November 2021 after a brief sickness. He is yet to be buried.

Speaking after the election before declaring Dr. Kingsley Ononogbu, winner and new chairman of the party in Abia state, Hon Babatunde explained that the Special Congress was conducted in- line with the Party Constitution. He described Ononogbu as the only candidate for the race and that he scored a total vote of 1,069 out of a total of 1,075 votes cast and 1,080 of delegates from the 17 Local Government Areas of Abia state accredited to vote.

He said the election was supervised by the National Working Committee (NWC) of the party from Abuja, the National secretariat of the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, some Party functionaries from different states of the federation as well as State and National Houses of Assembly members. There were also security operatives drawn from the private sector, the police and Civil Defense organizations.

He commended all who contributed in one way or the other to make the congress a success.

In his acceptance speech, the new chairman, Dr. Ononogbu thanked the organizers of the congress and the national body of APC for the honour done him and promised to work as a team-member in the bid to carry APC to a higher level.

He said he was on a rescue mission to take over Abia state from the PDP in the 2023 general elections. He paid glowing tribute to the late immediate-past chairman of the Party in Abia, Enyinnaya Harbor, saying that the late Harbor was dedicated, honest and a credible man, who was poised to take APC higher in Abia.

In his own speech, the Publicity secretary of the party in Abia state, Mr Okeh Ezeala claimed that the existing two factions of the APC in Abia are gradually fusing into one, saying that all the party officials in the Donatus Nwankpa-led parallel faction were all at the Special congress to express their loyalty and support to the Ikechi Emenike-led faction (now recognized by the leadership of the party). He disclosed that efforts were on to identify and eject those PDP-sponsored members hired to destabilize the APC in Abia state.

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