By Levinus Nwabughiogu
ABUJA – Bid to garner massive endorsement of Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila’s candidacy for the Speakership of the House of Representatives using the 2015 retreat of the All Progressives Congress, APC in Abuja failed woefully yesterday.
Vanguard gathered that many new members who came for the retreat kicked against the endorsement.
Consequently, it was learnt that they were asked to vacate their rooms in the hotel they were lodged for the event immediately the Programme ended.
The bills for the hotel rooms, Vanguard learnt were footed by an influential chieftain of the party from the south west.
According to a source, the plan was to replicate the event of last Saturday at the APC Senators-elect in Abuja where Senators Ahmed Lawan and George Akume were endorsed for senate president and deputy respectively.
A member-elect of the House from Bauchi state Hon. Halliru D. Jika (Darazo/Ganjuwa Federal Constituency) told journalists that he came to Abuja from Bauchi for the retreat and was billed to return home on Wednesday (today), but was shocked when he was asked by the hotel management to vacate his room.
“I am shocked that after the retreat ended by 6pm, i went back to my room only to be told to vacate,” Jika said..
Jika, a former speaker of Bauchi state House of Assembly said surprised that that kind of treatment was meted out to them.
“They lodged us without even complimentary breakfast and members are stranded now. What have we done to warrant this from our party leaders?”, he queried
Earlier in the morning just before the retreat got underway, a hitherto contender of the house speakership, Hon. Mohammed Mongonu held a press conference in the Amaechi Hall of Rock View Hotel( Royal), venue of the retreat where he announced his withdrawal from the race for Gbajabiamaila.
He however declared interest in the deputy speakership, saying he was running on a joint ticket with Gbajabiamila.
Members who were at the conference left the room with cap souvenirs which canvassed support for Gbajabiamila.
But they were immediately asked to remove them when they got into the main hall where the retreat was holding.