Chairman, Caretaker Committee of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Ebonyi State, Elder Fred Udeogu, said the party had concluded every necessary arrangement to ensure a hitch-free state Congress scheduled for today, Saturday, October 16, 2021.
Udeogu also explained that the party resorted to using private facilities for its Congresses and programmes, because the ruling All Progressives Congress administration in the state, would not allow them to use Government-owned facilities.
He said the party was prepared to conduct a free and fair State Congress, adding that security agencies had been notified of the exercise.
He assured that there was not going to be an imposition of any kind on the party.
Elder Udeogu said, “For our State Congress, we are ready and prepared. We have written and informed the Nigeria Police Force; the Department of State Services; the Nigerian Army; the Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps and others. We are aware of how the security situation of the environment is currently and that was why we wrote them, so they can provide security for us. The INEC has also been notified and anything outside this, you are already out of the law.
“And this is not the kind of Congress you find in other political parties, where people are forced or imposed on the people against their will. In our party, the PDP, there has never and there won’t be an imposition. Anybody trying to foist candidates on party faithful against their will have it so hot with himself or herself. We want to allow the party members to choose their leaders.
“We have already secured a venue for the Congress because we are a law-abiding party. We have avoided Government property or facilities and so we are going to use private facilities, in the state. We are very much aware the state government would not even approve any for us, should we decide to use a government-owned property. Even though we know that the National Broadcasting Commission gives all parties the right to use all states and national stations for the programmes, but we don’t use the ones in Ebonyi State, because we know how the government operates and, it’s very hostile to the opposition. We have been using radio stations in Enugu and others, for the dissemination of our programmes. It is that bad.
“I want you people to appreciate one good thing about this party, the PDP. Right from the time of the former President, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo, PDP has been consistent in winning Ebonyi State. I don’t know the secret; we have been winning here and there won’t be a difference come 2023.”
Meanwhile, Ebonyi State David Umahi has directed security agencies to seal off Salt Lake Hotels Abakaliki, the venue of the alleged APC parallel state Congress.
This is as Umahi alleged that a disloyal member of the All Progressives Congress in the state, he identified as Kenneth Nwakparata, and his cohorts were allegedly planning to hold a parallel State Congress of the APC, at the hotel premises, today.
Umahi stated this during a stakeholders meeting of the APC, at the Ecumenical Centre Abakaliki, on Friday.
According to the governor, no form of activity, either political or economical must take place at the hotel, today.
While declaring the Nwakparata wanted, Umahi pledged N500,000.00 bounty as a reward to anybody who could give information that would lead to his arrest.
Salt Lake Hotel is owned by a Chieftain of the Peoples Democratic Party and Senator representing Ebonyi Central Zone, Chief Obinna Ogba. The hotel is the temporal office of the PDP in the State.
Both the APC and the PDP are holding their State Congresses today in Ebonyi State.
“I can’t remember his name they said is Kenneth Nwakparata and that he wants to conduct parallel Congress tomorrow and where he wants to conduct the Congress is Salt Lake Hotel, at Obinna Ogba’s hotel.
“That letter he wrote is fake news and I have declared him wanted. Anywhere you see him, bring him to the police and you will get N500,000.00
“I am cancelling any meeting there tomorrow. The place should be sealed off. There shall be no meeting there and the CP must ensure nothing takes place there and that the entire place must be beefed up with security.
“But if you want to try, you try and go there and see what will happen. I am the Chief Security Officer of the state and it is my duty to maintain law and order….Ebonyi State is APC,” Umahi said during the meeting.
Reacting, the Caretaker Committee Chairman of the PDP in the state, Elder Fred Udeogu, Umahi said there was no iota of truth in Umahi’s allegation.
Udeogu said, “I state categorically that the information coming from Umahi is as useless as it is unimaginable. As far as I am concerned, the owner of this hotel is a bonafide member of the PDP. It is not easy for even an APC man to even come here to use this place for anything. The level of non-communication between PDP and APC is so diametric. It has been long since the governor has been looking for how to seal the hotel.”