June 17, 2024

Board appointments: APC members write Tinubu, reject Abia nominees


…say only two are party members

…express fear move may affect party in 2027

By Gift ChapiOdekina, Abuja

Some members of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), Abia State Chapter under the aegis of Abia APC Stakeholders Forum (AASF) have rejected all other nominees for appointments into the various governing boards/councils of Tertiary institutions in Nigeria except two nominations.

The Forum stated that outside the former minister of state for science and technology, Chief Henry Ikoh and Barrister Chijioke Ikpo, the other nominees belonged to either the Labour Party (LP) or the People’s Democratic Party (PDP).

To this end, the group has written to President Bola Ahmed Tinubu, appealing for the withdrawal of the names.

Signed by the former minority leader of Abia State House of Assembly, Hon. Chijioke Chukwu who is the convener; Hon. (Barr) Anderson K. Akaliro, member representing Umuahia North State Constituency, Abia State House of Assembly; Hon. (Barr) Emeka Okoroafor, Former Deputy Minority Leader, Abia State House of Assembly; Dr. Mike Ukoha, Former Minority Whip, Abia State House of Assembly and Hon (Engr.) Ejike Chukwu (Umunneochi State Constituency); Chief Blessing Dans Adokiye from Ukwa West Local Government Area of the state, the letter was also copied to the Senate President, Godswill Akpobio.

According to our reporter who sighted the letter titled “Nomination Into The Governing Boards/Councils of Tertiary Institutions in Nigeria: Request to Withdraw/Remove ABIA State Nominees Who Are Not APC Members”, other leaders of APC copied included the speaker of the House of Representatives, Rt. Hon. Tajudeen Abbas, Ph.D; his deputy, Rt. Hon. Benjamin
Okezie Kalu; the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Senator George Akume; the Chief of Staff to the President, Rt. Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila and the National Security Adviser (NSA), Mallam Nuhu Ribadu.

Others were Minister of State for Labour and Employment, Hon. Barr. Nkiruka
Onyejeocha; the ational Chairman, All Progressives Congress (APC), Dr.
Abdullahi Umar Ganduje; the National Vice Chairman South-East, APC., Dr. Ijioma Arodiogbu; Abia State APC Chairman, Dr. Kingsley Ononogbu and the 2023 Abia State APC Gubernatorial Candidate, High Chief Ikechi

The apparent aggrieved APC members of the Forum who described the inclusion of the names on the list as a typographical error said leaving them would amount to defeating the essence of party loyalty and political participation.

They further explained that the nominees scorned them, destroyed their billboards and other sensitive materials during the 2023 electioneering campaigns and stood against victory of APC in the State.

They wondered how the nominees would now reap from where they did not sow.

The Forum stated that the development has caused apprehension and dissatisfaction within the party circles in Abia and also may affect the fortunes of the party in the State.

They stressed that the opposition is being subtly equipped to win future elections.

The letter read thus: “We write with the greatest sense of apprehension as concerned members of the Abia APC Stakeholders Forum (AASF) to inform Mr. President that the recent list published for appointments/nominations into the various governing boards/councils of Tertiary Institutions in Nigeria defeats the intendment and purpose for Party loyalty and political participation.

“Your Excellency, it is important to draw your most revered attention to the fact that the entire list of over 555 persons nominated into the various boards/councils of Tertiary Institutions in Nigeria has only 2 nominees from Abia State who are members of the Abia State Chapter of the All-progressives Congress (APC) to wit: Chief Henry Ikoh and Barrister Chijioke Ikpo.

“It is equally important to inform your good office that the other nominees are either members of Labour Party or the Peoples Democratic Party and not our party members.

“Sir, it may be of interest to note that these nominees are the same people who scorned us during the 2023 electioneering campaigns and stood against our victory in the state, removing the bill boards of the President and destroying campaign materials across the entire state.

“Without sounding prolix, it is our position that the publication of the names of these non-party members as board appointees from Abia State in an APC led government, simply put, is a vent of typographical errors or misprints.

“While we do not want to believe that those names appeared deliberately in the list published, we however regret to apprise Mr. President of the serious apprehension the publication has caused within the circles of the party hierarchy
in the State.

“On the backdrop of the foregoing, we hereby appeal to your good office, Your Excellency, to check the names of the nominees from Abia as published to ascertain the party affiliation and loyalty of these individuals and make the necessary corrections.

“Instructively, Mr. President, please, kindly note, sir, that the present situation if not properly addressed and resolved may stifle the growth of the All-Progressives Congress in the State while equipping the opposition to win the 2027 general election.

“Your Excellency, we make bold to say that the All Progressives Congress, Abia State Chapter is blessed with Men and Women of great repute who can also be managed and grown without any interferences by leaders from other States.

“Sir, without sounding disrespectful to you and other distinguished leaders of our great party, the APC, Abia State Chapter hereby rejects the nominees who are not our members and pleads that in the overall interest of the party in Abia State, these nominees should be withdrawn/removed.

“It is against the law of Nature to reap where you did not sow. Most Abia
APC members have over the years shown dedication to the party
despite the difficulty caused by the incessant harassment by the same
opposition members nominated into the APC led Government. Sir, we believe in your ability and capacity to stand firm in times like this. Please accept the assurances of our highest political regards, Your Excellency.”