By Vincent Ujumadu & Chinonso Alozie
OWERRI—TROUBLE is said to be steering up in Imo State chapter of the All Progressive Grand Alliance, APGA, over the planned ward congress of the party.
Vanguard was told yesterday that some governorship aspirants in APGA, protested that their supporters could not get forms to participate in the said ward congress and that the plot was targeted to favour a governorship aspirant who recently joined the party.
As a result of this development, the ward congress scheduled to hold yesterday was shifted to Tuesday (today) tentatively. The reason is to give some aspirants enough time to purchase forms for the ward congress.
Vanguard gathered that one of the governorship aspirants in the party, said not to be satisfied with the process, was the immediate past governor of Imo State, Ikedi Ohakim.
Consequently, it was gathered that Ohakim and seven other governorship aspirants of APGA had perfected a move to meet with the national leadership of the party and the Governor of Anambra State, Willie Obiano, with a view to resolving the controversies.
However, the Chief Press Secretary to Ohakim, Mr Collins Ughalla, denied any plan by his boss to meet with Obiano and the leadership of the party.
He said: “It is not true that Ohakim is leading other guber aspirants to Anambra to protest the issues arising from the ward congress.
“The forms are not enough in supply, so the congress which is supposed to hold yesterday was postponed after the stakeholders meeting.
“So, APGA is not the kind of party that will allow its ward congress to be hijacked. I learnt that the forms are now available and some people have started picking their forms.”
Community protests alleged imposition of candidate in Obiano’s constituency
Meanwhile, there is tension in Governor Willie Obiano’s Anambra East constituency following alleged attempt by some stakeholders in All Progressive Grand Alliance, APGA, to renege on the agreement over the rotation of House of Assembly among all the communities in the area.
The people of Igbariam, the only community yet to produce a member of the House of Assembly for Anambra East threatened yesterday that they would embark on a protest to the headquarters of APGA to drive home their displeasure over the decision to impose the current member representing the area on the people.
The traditional ruler of Igbariam, Igwe Kelly Nneli said it was the turn of his community, adding that his people had already selected Chief Lawrence Anikpe to contest the election on the platform of All Progressive Grand Alliance, APGA.
Igwe Nneli, who introduced Anikpe to the people insisted that Igbariam people would resist any attempt to deny them their right to produce the next lawmaker for the constituency.
Anikpe, in an interview in Awka yesterday said that communities in the constituency had religiously followed the selection of their member in the legislature and hoped that the agreement would be kept by APGA during the forthcoming party primary.
He said: “We have six communities in Anambra East constituency. Hon O.C Chinwuba from Aguleri represented us from 2003-2007; Mike Obiodu from Nsugbe and Joe Isiagu from Umuleri had also been there at various times, while Obinna Emeka has been there since 2011.”
“Because of the understanding the governor had with members of the state House of Assembly in 2011, he stayed for another four years, which will end in 2019. It is therefore the turn of Igbariam and our people have decided that I should represent them.”
“The governor appealed to Igbariam people in 2015 to allow Emenaka to retain the seat because of the agreement he had with members of the house then and it would be our turn this time around.
“We are very hopeful that the governor will call the people together to address the issue and to remind the stakeholders the agreement reached in 2015.
“It is zoning that produced Governor Willie Obiano. Our people demanded for equity and justice during the administration of Governor Peter Obi who zoned the governorship to Anambra North and we expect that for equity sake, the governor will keep the promise he made to our people.”
“It would be improper for one community to be in the House of Assembly for three tenures when other communities had not been given a single opportunity.
“The people of Igbariam have nominated me to represent the constituency because they believe that I have paid my dues in APGA.