From Tony Osauzo, Benin
Ahead of Saturday States Congresses of the All Progressives Congress (APC), there are indications that the Edo State chapter of the party will organise parallel congresses as some members of the party are against consensus arrangement.
Addressing the media in Benin City, a chieftain of the party, Chief Francis Inegbeniki, who is also the State Vice Chairman (Edo Central) and the leader of APC in the senatorial district, announced his intention to contest for the state chairmanship of the party.
‘I’m also an aspirant for the position of APC State Chairman in Edo State in the forthcoming nationwide state congresses of APC slated for Saturday 16th October 2021,’ he said.
‘There is a rumour going around that I have stepped down or asked to step down. I’m here to set the record straight and, therefore, I wish to state emphatically that I’m still in the race!
‘It is true that there was a kangaroo meeting held a few hours ago, where it was insinuated that the Edo APC state congress will not hold as scheduled, but rather a process that is alien to the ethos and principles of democracy will be adopted, whereby incompetent state executives will be handpicked and imposed on the party.
‘I hereby dissociate myself from such undemocratic decision of a kangaroo and illegally constituted meeting.
‘I and the majority of our party members completely dissociate ourselves from that illegal meeting and its undemocratic decision, and as such, insist on a free and credible state congress as stipulated by the Constitution of APC and the congress guidelines released by the Caretaker/Extraordinary Convention Planning Committee (CECPC).
‘We are by this medium appealing to the leadership of our party and the chairman of CECPC, HE Mai Mala Buni to intervene and stop our party in Edo state, from imminent political annihilation,’ he said.
Chief Inegbeniki stressed that if the group canvassing consensus arrangement “go ahead with their illegal congress, the majority of our party members will conduct a credible congress” and urged party members to come out and vote.
Leaders of the party had agreed on a consensus to return party executives who had remained loyal in the face of the crisis in the party.
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