The Sun News

APC NEC wades into Bayelsa congress controversy  

From: Femi Folaranmi, Yenagoa

 The national secretariat of the All Progressive Congress (APC) has stepped into the emerging controversy trailing the non-elective congress held in Bayelsa State.

 An appeal panel headed by Elder Onuoha Udeka is being sent to Bayelsa to resolve all issues arising from the congress.

 This is even as plans are underway to expel the suspended chairman of the party, Chief Tiwei Orunimighe, from the party for anti-party activities.

 Investigations revealed that contrary to comments credited to Orunimighe and the Secretary of the electoral panel from Abuja, Mrs. Mildred Ezoh, that the party held a peaceful congress with voice votes to elect 24 delegates from the eight local government areas, the authentic list had been prepared by party elders after it harmonised all positions to avoid unnecessary bickering.

 Findings indicated that Orunimighe who got wind of the party elders meeting at Hoil Suites Hotel, Yenagoa stormed the venue but was prevailed upon by some chieftains of the party that he could not attend because he is on suspension.

A party source said Orunimighe knew he did not have the power to conduct the non-elective congress and decided to go ahead to conduct it and believed that the National Executive Committee ( NEC) would listen to him.

 “There are no two lists from the state APC. We have one APC under Timipre Sylva and the three delegates per local government council were duly nominated and affirmed in the presence of Party officials. We held a meeting on Friday and consulted with key party leaders. While the meeting was going on, Tiwei and an ex-militant leader, Africanus Ukpariasia came with crowd. They claimed to have been left out but the party leaders sent the Former Acting Governor, Wenipre Seibarugu, Former Chief of Staff, Chief Sam Ogbuku and Former Federal Lawmaker, Walman Ogoriba to explain to him while he will not be part of the meeting. Even I did not make the delegate list and Tiwei was not on the list as expected because he was suspended by the Sylva faction. The issue of reconciliation do not come into play as the party is intact. The decision on the status of Tiwei faction and many other issues will be settled as time goes on with coming state, local govt and Ward congresses.”

 Orunimighe backed by some elders of the party is said to have gone to Abuja to present the list to the NEC prompting the party leadership to set up various appeal panels to look into the controversy trailing the congress in several chapters of the party.

 Chief Onouha Udeka has been appointed by the party to look in the issues arising from the congress in Bayelsa state.

 Meanwhile there are strong indications that Orunimighe would be expelled from the party over alleged anti-party activity before the national convention of the party.

 Petitions against him over his alleged romance with the Peoples Democratic Party( PDP) in the state has been submitted to the party.

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