Delta APC crisis worsens as parallel state executive committee emerges

A suppoter tries to display All Progressives Congress (APC) party flag on a pole, during incumbent President Mohammadu Buhari's presidential campaign rally at the Sanni Abacha Stadium in Kano, on January 31, 2019. - Buhari has flag off campaign in Kano, the commercial nerve centre of northern Nigeria to seek re-election at the forthcoming February polls. (Photo by PIUS UTOMI EKPEI / AFP) (Photo credit should read PIUS UTOMI EKPEI/AFP via Getty Images)

A harmonised list of the parallel executive committee of the All Progressive Congress (APC) in Delta State emerged at the weekend to pilot the affairs of the party in the state.

This is coming after two weeks when a 35-man state executive committee which has Omeni Sobotie as chairman-elect emerged at a congress in Asaba that had in attendance the Deputy Senate President, Ovie Omo-Agege, Senator Peter Nwaoboshi, O’tega Emerhor among others.

But the Delta APC Leaders’ Council with the Minister of State for Labour and Employment, Festus Keyamo, as chairman, dismissed the October 16 congress and came up with what it called a harmonised list of 36-member state executive committees of the party.

The parallel list which was contained in a release has Silas Buowe as chairman, Elvis Ayomanor, and deputy chairman, Chidi Okonji, as secretary among other positions.

The release was signed by Keyamo; Dr Alex Ideh, co-chairman of the council; Cairo Ojougboh, Secretary; Great Ogboru, the party’s 2019 governorship candidate; Victor Ochei, executive director, NIMASA and Mrs Mariam Ali, foremost woman leader of the party, among other notable leaders.

The release said in line with the constitution of the party and the guidelines for the 2021 congresses which stipulates consensus amongst stakeholders, the Council of Leaders resolved to release a harmonised list of state executive members who shall be recognised by all APC faithful in the state and will run the affairs of the party henceforth.

However, the other faction of the party which had its state congress on October 16, described the harmonised put together by the Keyamo-led Council of Leaders as illegal and an afterthought.

In a statement by Mr Pius Ituru of the Directorate of Media and Publicity of the APC, condemned the announcement of the harmonization of the state executive of the party credited to a group of persons of who “parade themselves with an illegal contraption called ‘Delta State APC Council of Leaders.”

Ituru said those who signed the release were anti-party agents, adding that the APC shall no longer condone indiscipline “within its fold as we move with a focus towards winning 2023 elections.”

Regardless, those promoting the harmonised list, insisted that the list emerged after several meetings where diverse interests were considered in addition to wide consultation with other stakeholders, adding that the new state executive would work with the existing local government and ward executives already in place.

They hinted that they were not unaware of a few leaders who refused to join the arrangement of the council put together by the Congress and Extraordinary Conversation Planning Committee (CECPC) of the party and who decided to be part of a one-man-show.

“Their positions and spaces within the Council of Leaders are still open anytime they are done with their solo runs,” they posited.

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