From Scholastica Hir, Makurdi
The Benue All Progressives Congress (APC) National Assembly Caucus has debunked claims that there are two factions of the ruling party in the state.
They stated this in a statement signed by the joint spokesman of the NASS members and federal appointees from the state, Hon Philip Agbese.
Recall that at the inauguration of members of the Benjamin
Omakolo led faction of the State Working Committee, SWC, of the party recently, the Chief of Staff to the Governor, Mr. Paul Biam, stated that Governor Hyacinth Alia remains the leader of the party in the state.
Biam also noted that the Omakolo-led executives remained the authentic leadership of the party in the state and advised APC members in the state to discountenance any other group claiming leadership of the party.
“Let me assure all of you that there is only one Governor in Benue State, and there are no two leaders of APC in Benue state; we have only one and the only leader of the party in the state as recognized by the National Working Committee of the party is Governor Hyacinth Alia.
“Let no one make any mistake anywhere or anytime, Governor Alia has a four year mandate and he remains the leader of APC in Benue State.”
The lawmakers insisted that the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Senator George Akume, remains the leader of the party in Benue as far as the APC’s doctrine and philosophy are concerned.
They said as long as the party’s constitution and National Working Committee are concerned, Comrade Austin Agada is still the state chairman.
Agbese cited Borno, Ogun, Kebbi, and other states where Senator Kashim Shettima, Chief Olusegun Osoba, and Atiku Bagudu are still recognised as leaders of the party.
“Even before Shettima became the Vice President of the country, he was regarded as the leader in Borno State,” the Deputy Spokesman of the House of Reps added.
Agbese also wondered why Governor Alia who has barely spent one year in office wants to be equated with a man who has been governor for eight years, Senator for 12 years, Minister for four years and currently the SGF.
“We are true party men and doing things the unique way in line with the party’s doctrine of command, and that’s why members of the National Assembly Caucus are highly respected in our constituencies.
“We have not told anyone in our domains that we are the leaders of the party. For example, how do I address myself as the leader of the party in my federal constituency with Senator Ameh Ebute, Chief Audu Ogbeh, and Chief John Ochoga all from my place?”
He, however, urged true APC members to condider those parading themselves as the new leaders of the party as merely entertaining the Benue public.