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Enugu APC: Clash of interests between old and new

By Dennis Agbo

The entry of such prominent persons as Senator Ken Nnamani, Senator Jim Nwobodo, former Governor Sullivan Chime among other high profile personalities into the Enugu State chapter of the All Progressives Congress, APC was supposed to give fibre to the party in the state.

Gov Sullivan Chime

However, the assemblage of the high profile persons seems to be leading to a clash of interest between the newcomers and the original members of the party. Most of the defectors who came from the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP came after the PDP lost the presidential election in 2015.

The apostle of the Ebeano phenomenon, Senator Chimaroke Nnamani despite entreaties from the APC has snubbed the party preferring to sustain his politics in the PDP where he is now reconnecting with one of his former protégées turned political kingmaker, Senator Ike Ekweremadu.

However, the influx of the former PDP members into the APC seems to have become a disadvantage as the interest of the new entrants and that of the older members appear to be at variance, resulting to squabble and even clashes such as one that took place last Tuesday as the different factions of the party in the state tried to gain control of the party secretariat.

The fracas between the Dr. Ben Nwoye faction and the Deacon Okey Ogbodo faction made the commissioner of police sack both factions from the Secretariat to avoid casualty.

Ken Nnamani

The commotion made supporters of each faction wield clubs and hold each other to the jugular. Interestingly, both factions are sharply divided on the method of primaries for the state. Whereas the Ogbodo group said they would adopt direct primaries, the Nwoye group favours indirect primaries for candidates of the party.

The disagreement has in effect polarised aspirants of the party and in particular the governorship aspirants who have reinforced their strategies that would make each and every one of them emerge candidates.

The governorship aspirants that have so far indicated interest to fly the flag of APC in the state include a former Attorney General in the state, Mr. Ifeanyi Nwoga, Engr. Ben Eche, the thespian, Kenneth Okonkwo (aka Andy Okeke) and Senator Ayogu Eze.

Eze’s emergence is breeding discussions because he was the only PDP governorship aspirant in 2014 who ‘seriously’ challenged Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi up to the Supreme Court.

But whether has the structure to win the candidacy of the APC, with his late entry into the party or is he going to be an imposed candidate even in the face of disagreements on the method of primaries will adopt is an issue.


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