Senator Annie Okonkwo
Indications are that neither you nor Gov Rochas Okorocha obtained the mandate of APGA before going into the on-going merger talks?
We did. No one would have embarked on such a serious mission without deep consultations and support. The real APGA members are in full support. They are not talking or antagonizing the visible progress already achieved in the merger talks. But the ones currently attempting to discredit the move are those APGA-PDP(Peoples Democratic Party) members led by Anambra state Gov Peter Obi members.
But that is very unfortunate because we have already gone beyond that level and there is no going back. We sincerely thank our dear able leader Gov Rochas Okorocha whose foresightedness has continued to propel and save the Igbos today. More over, what other mandate do you really need when the who is the leader and sponsor of the party is leading the members to the talks. Obi was duly consulted. But because he was already on a mission to kill the party before his PDP gambit, through the judiciary. They are now celebrating the favourable judgment they just got. What else do they want? I wish everyone shows sincerity about the roles they are playing in all these.
Do you not foresee any legal hiccups over the need to obtain the party?s ratification for merger option through a Convention?
The Electoral Act is very clear on that. Once the party agrees and writes INEC on their intention; after 60 days it becomes automatically effective.
Okorocha pleaded severally with Obi to withdraw the matter from the court in the interest of all. Today he has the order of court to destroy the entire party structure at all levels. In one breath they are celebrating and in another he is calling for a meeting. To discuss what? No. It?s to use such opportunity to continue to deceive the people into believing he has anything good to offer the party. Unfortunately for him the people have known better and have already moved on with the actual progressives.
Obi is not fair to the Igbos at all. After benefiting so much and reaping from their goodwill and the party but unfortunately he has continued to scheme for the South East to be left in the cold, left to the vagaries of a hostile and inclement Nigeria?s political weather. He has vowed to destroy the very fabric of the party that made him.
The matter shouldn?t be made personal
No, there is nothing personal about it. But just as Gov Okorocha is doing his best to save and salvage the party, Obi is doing his best to wreck the party. Everyone should be happy to acknowledge their avowed roles in the whole episode.
Else how can the same governor who prevented the party and the South East zone from fielding a presidential candidate in the 2011 general elections which he ensured was ratified vide the convention at Awka where other issues including the election of the Chief Victor Umeh-led were likewise ratified go to court to through the chairman out. He has succeeded in using the same convention to secure and announce to the world that the party has thrown its weight behind the candidature of our incumbent president. Their latest actions are indirectly casting negative aspersions on those noble decisions. APGA is the only party we have. All our opponents and contemporaries fielded presidential candidates then, but we didn?t.
If not for the swift intervention of Gov Okorocha the Igbos would have been stranded politically today.
Where do you go from here?
That?s why we have to be party to the emerging mega party, to give alternative to Nigerians.
Anambra governorship election is barely 8months away, don?t you worry this disagreement would affect the chances of the party in installing Obi?s replacement?
That?s a correct observation but we are doing our best to rescue and save the party. Gov Obi is clearly not interested in anyone. He?s always concerned about self, if not he would not have destroyed APGA structures
But Chief Nwobualor has indicated the newly restructured APGA would be ready in the next 90days?
That is self delusion. They did not and couldn?t install, deliver anyone or do anything commendable when the party structure was intact, not even in their immediate constituency. They are still trying to deceive the people. We are restraining the party members who have been itching for a mass revolt over the continued public deceit.
They also spoke about the party certificate that must be returned before INEC registers the new party?
Which certificate are they talking about? Is it the same that is with Chief Umeh? When are they going to conclude with the appeal? What if it gets to the Supreme Court? Obi and his co-travellers are scheming to deny the party chance to present a governorship candidate in the forthcoming election in November; just as he destroyed the composition of the Anambra State Independent Electoral Commission (ANSIEC) to ensure there would be no Local Government election in his two tenures. It won?t work for him this time.
That?s why the progressives driven by unflinching love for the Igbos led by Gov Okorocha are working tirelessly to save the situation through the evolving merger and the consequent emergence of a mega party as a clear alternative to the PDP.