RE: The Contrived Apc crisis In Abia State -Unmasking those
behind it, by Monday O. Ubani Esq.
response by Vigilus C. Nwankwo Esq
The Bible, the Good Book, in John Chapter 8:32 rendered “You shall know the truth and the
truth shall set you free”. My learned friend, I have the honour to, and by this my response to
your article avail you of the truth of the situation in Abia APC, so that this truth shall set you
and your associates free.
As you admitted, Abia APC did not do well in the General Elections of 2015 and 2019, except for the Senatorial, House of Reps and House of Assembly positions won by the party in the 2019 in Abia North. APC as a party in Abia State has not been able to win the
Governorship seat in both elections. The reason for the party’s failure in taking over Government House in Abia State since 2015, is that the leadership of the party in the State, particularly the State Working Committee led by Hon Donatus Nwankpa have never
manifested nor exhibited genuine zeal and determination to win elections for the party in the
state. Equally, some members in the leadership obviously are on the payroll of the Abia State
PDP failed government. They work for the PDP to ensure that APC remains a lame duck party in the state. Most of the them hide under ethnic and tribal objectives to work for their brother in PDP to win instead of APC. The evidence remains the fact that most of them in both elections failed to deliver their polling units or wards for the party.
APC since 2015 has not been able to capture any seats or positions in Abia South and Abia Central. What is more? The candidates of the party for the gubernatorial elections in both 2015 and 2019, failed to mount a real challenge to PDP as expected of candidates from the
ruling party in Nigeria. No serious legal challenge in the tribunal was mounted by them. By way of circumstantial evidence, both elections were compromised.
Consequent upon the above, the National leadership of the party having conducted
investigations into the failure of the party to win in Abia State, came to the findings and
conclusion that APC in Abia State is not driven by the genuine and committed members and
resultantly decided that the status quo cannot remain if the party must move forward. In consequence, National leadership of the party decided that High Chief Ikechi Emenike, a
committed founding member of the party, a man with no corruption stain, a flawless, faultless apostle of good governance and proven capacity, competence and a committed party man alongside Rt. Hon Barr Nkeriuka Onyejiocha, the Deputy Chief Whip of the House of Reps, a
4th term member of the House of Reps, a vanguard of infrastructural and human capital
development, a trusted, vocal, hardworking, result oriented and one passionate about the
plight of Abia State with an unwavering determination to reclaim Abia State were chosen by
the National leadership of the party to redeem, reclaim and rescue Abia State from the hand
of the present mercantile politicians in PDP ravaging the state. To achieve the goal, a team of committed and trusted party men and women, who will not be in the payroll of the State Government must be elected party executives from Ward, LGA, Zonal and State levels in the 2021 Nationwide Congresses of APC that commenced on 31st July, 2021.
The enemies of APC in the State, having read the mood of the National leadership of the
party, and being funded by State Government and their agents parading as APC members
swore that redemption will not come the way of APC in Abia State. Hence, they resorted to all manner of antics to frustrate the Congresses in Abia state. The first infantile move was the contrived cum purported suspension of the cerebral High Chief Ikechi Emenike, a man who is well wired in the national political circuit of APC. The purported attempt to suspend him
through his ward failed and turned a nullity because the procedure for disciplinary measure provided by the constitution of Nigeria and APC were not followed and observed. Section 36(1) of the 1999 constitution provides for fair hearing. Article 21 b IV of APC
constitution makes it mandatory for fair hearing to be observed in any adjudication of any complaint or allegation against a party member at whatever level. In breaching the above provisions of the law, High Chief Ikechi Emenike was not served any allegation or complaint
allegedly made against him by his ward, neither was he invited to be heard before the flawed jamboree called suspension. The purported suspension by his ward is made worse by the fact that a Ward exco cannot by the Party’s constitution hear a complaint by the ward against a member. By article 21 b. VI b of the APC constitution, it is the LGA Exco that can hear
allegation against a party member by his or her ward. Thus, the sham called suspension of
Ikechi Emenike and the claimed ratification by the LGA, State Excos and even State Caucus,
is and remains a nullus bollus (nullity). The Supreme Court of Nigeria in the case of ABAH
VS MONDAY, 2015,14 NWLR PT1480, PG 577, RATIO 5, held that any proceedings judicial or otherwise in breach of fair hearing is a nullity. Based on the above, the National leadership of the party did not take cognizance of the said suspension.
Having failed with the suspension, the same group led by Nwankpa decided to scuttle the congresses in Abia state. By article 13 .3 IV of the APC constitution, the NEC of the Party is donated with powers to appoint all committees of the party including Congress Committees
and assign it with any function it may deem fit. The NEC of the party appointed Congress Committees for the 2021 Nationwide Congresses of the party in the 36 states of the federation, including FCT. Rt. Hon Sunny Goli, a high-ranking member of the House of Reps was appointed the Congress Committee Chairman for Abia State with six other distinguished party men as members. On 29th of July, 2021, Hon Goli and his committee reported to Abia State for the Ward Congress of 31st July, 2021. Those who never meant well for the party in the state made efforts to hijack them and when it failed, they declared them wanted. As a
committed committee, Hon Goli and his team conducted a free and fair Ward Congress in the
184 Wards in Abia State on 31st July, 2021 after visiting and getting assurances from INEC,
the Nigeria Police, DSS and NSCDC. On 2nd of August 2021, the said Committee submitted the result and outcome of the Ward Congress in Abia State to the National office of the party
which results the party accepted on the same day.
Like wounded lions, the enemies of the party in the State on 3rd August 2021, commenced suit No HUK/33/2021 at High Court of Ukwa against the Party and the Abia Congress Committee for the Court to hold that it is the list of the purported Congress conducted by
Nwankpa led exco that the party should recognise and accept. On 4th of August 2021, the High Court of Ukwa granted an ex parte interim order restraining APC from accepting the Ward Congress results and list from Hon Goli led committee; and for the LGA and State Congresses not to hold in Abia State. Unknown to them, the High Court of Umunneochi on
30th day of July 2021, granted and interim order compelling APC to conduct the congresses
as scheduled to commence on 31st July 2021 in suit No HUM/26/2021. Equally, on 12th day
of August 2021, the same Court delivered judgement in the suit and made so many declarations – part of which are:
- The APC was ordered to conduct its nationwide congresses as scheduled
- The Court declared that all the nationwide congresses of APC Nationwide by the Congress
Committees of the party is lawful and valid
- The Court declared that any parallel congress not conducted by the Congress Committees
appointed by APC CECPC is illegal, null, void and of no effect.
Nwankpa and his state led exco lacks the power to conduct Congresses. In AKPATASO VS
ADJOTO 2019,14 NWLR, PT, 1693, PG 501 AT 505, RATIO 2, the Supreme Court held
that Any primary or congress election conducted by the state executive of a party is illegal.
See also EMENIKE VS PDP, 2012, ALL FWLR PT 640. The law is also settled that injunction cannot lie in respect of a completed act. See ANGADI VS PDP 2018,15 NWLR
PT 1641 PG 1. APC on 3rd of Sept 2021, at pages 28 to 29 published the judgement of Umunneochi High Court that validated all the congresses of APC nationwide. APC also filled a preliminary objection on the Ukwa High Court suit as well as a motion to set aside the interim order and a motion to stay the execution of the ex parte interim order. On 18th August
2021, the High Court Ukwa declined to extend the life span of the ex parte order. Considering
the above, the LGA Congresses of the party nationwide was conducted on 4th September
2021 – Abia State inclusive and by 2nd October 2021, the State Congress nationwide will
take place, Abia inclusive. The outcome of Abia LGA Congress conducted by Hon Goli led
committee has been accepted by the party. From the above, the question may be asked
between the Ikechi Emenike and Nwankpa group, which group is working with the party and
for the party and legally too? The answer is clear, of course is the Ikechi Emenike. Nwankpa
and his group are simply fighting the decision of the National leadership of the party to
reposition APC in Abia State so that APC will not win the general elections of 2023 particularly the Guber election. This is the reason they want Ikechi Emenike to crucified. The good news is that their game is up and over. The decision of the National leadership of APC in Abia state vide repositioning it under the leadership of which Chief Ikechi Emenike is irrevocable and irreversible. My advice to Nwankpa and his co travellers is to respect the decision of the party if they want to remain in the party. In AGI VS PDP 2017, 17 NWLR,
PT, 1595, PG 388, the Supreme Court held that a political party is supreme over its own
affairs. The Court maintained that “Every member of a political party, in order to remain in
the party, must be loyal and be bound by the rules and regulations of his party and also must
respect the party’s decision”.
From the foregoing, I submit that the enemies of APC in Abia State are the group working against the decision of the party at the national level and we know who is drumming for them. But in all they have failed as the true leadership of APC is Abia State have emerged.
High Chief Ikechi Emenike with Rt Hon Barr Nkeiruka Onyejiocha, will anchor, navigate, sail, drive and take APC Abia State on a voyage of victory come 2023, and with help of God, the National leadership of the party and the full support of change-hungry Abians.