From Chuks Moses, Awka
Perhaps, the only good news that came out of the meeting of the All Progressives Congress (APC) Stakeholders Roundtable with Vice President Yemi Osinbajo in Awka, the Anambra State capital, was the announcement of a first from the State.
Osinbajo disclosed that the Nnamdi Azikiwe University(Unizik) Awka will be the first university in the country to have its own independent power supply source. The project will be commissioned in a matter of weeks.
Having listened to the numerous bitter words with which members of the All Progressives Congress (APC)) described how the party and its members in the State were being treated, he blamed it on lack of unity.
He therefore called for unity, pointing out that his presence is the beginning of a new beginning. “We have to start with a new leadership pattern. We are going to make a lot of adjustments so as to position our party towards winning the next governorship of the state”, he said.
He also suggested the appointment of at least three members per council for the schools feeding programme.
It was a pin drop silence as the state chairman of the party, Chief Basil Ejidike, read his welcome address which sounded like a communique by the members.
Chief Ejidike lamented that despite being endowed with men and women of proven integrity and experience to deliver in any election, the party in the State lacked cohesion and motivation. He noted that though the party in the State had a registered membership strength in excess of two hundred and fifty thousand they were not motivated through empowerment programmes, or given a sense of identity and direction.
He also registered the protest the appointment of Chief Anayo Nnebe by the Speaker of the Federal House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila, as
as an aide. Nnebe, according to him,a card carrying member of the All Progressives Grand Alliance(APGA) who bitterly ran for the last election against APC candidate; and had allegedly demonstrated an eagerness to destroy APC in the state.
He said this appointment was very demoralizing to APC members who toil daily to uplift the party. The party called on Gbajabiamila to sack Nnebe immediately and replace him with a certified APC member from the state.
Ejidike said the members were aghast that even in the Federal Government’s school feeding programme, even the contractors and cooks were hijacked by APGA members. Painfully, he added, the cooks were forced to wear aprons that were clearly marked ‘Willie is Working’. Willie Obiano is the Governor of Anambra State, elected on the platform of APGA.
As he put it, ‘monkey dey work, baboon dey chop’, urging the VP to arrange a meeting with leaders of the party from the state, in his office, to formulate a way forward.
Minister designate, Dr Chris Ngige, was intermittently shouted down, as he spoke at the event, though he acknowledged he won’t make a long speech because of the palpable anger in the hall. “Please we will talk at the forthcoming summit between October and December”, Ngige said.
Party chieftain, Dr Tony Nwoye, put it bluntly: “APC as a party does not exist in the state. I joined the party to use it as a platform to better the lot of my people.
“APC has never won a state assembly or any National Assembly seat in the state, let alone winning governorship seat in the state”.
He went on to reel out numerous other areas of dismal performance of the party in the state, “… which was due to lack of unity, cohesion and empowerment.”
Fort Dike said, “if you give us the governor of this state by one means or another, that will be enough for us.
“We want to be the people enjoying the benefits of being in power, not the opposition…”, he added.