IFEANYI EZUGWU, ENUGU.
A political pressure group, Enugu West People’s Forum yesterday asked the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) chairman in the state, Engr. Vita Abba to resign and face his gubernatorial aspiration.
The group also decried alleged attempts by some State Government functionaries and the Enugu PDP Chairman, Engr. Abba to compel and railroad various government functionaries and party executives into hasty endorsement of the Governor of Enugu State, Sullivan Chime and his preferred candidates for elective political positions in the forthcoming 2015 general elections.
Addressing a press conference in Enugu, the chairman of the group, Hon Paul Anikwe, condemned what he called the descent of Enugu State into a “political garrison”, with stringent measures allegedly applied to muffle voices of the populations and terribly abridge their constitutionally guaranteed rights to freedom of expression and association.
“We warn that these undemocratic and uncivilized actions and utterances are capable of causing serious disaffection, mass defection, disunity, instability, and uncontrollable dissension thereby undermining the cohesiveness and success of the Enugu PDP in the forthcoming general elections.
“PDP thrives on democratic ethos and to steamroll into endorsements is nothing short of dictatorship.
“We call on Engr. Vita Abba to resign his position as the Enugu State Chairman of the PDP to pursue his gubernatorial ambition, which is the driving force behind his undemocratic and nefarious actions. He should no longer be allowed to lord his personal interest over the overall interest and fortunes of the party,” Anikwe who is a member of the Nigerian Shippers Council Board and former member of Enugu House of Assembly stated.
While urging the national leadership of the party to take note of Abba’s alleged abuse of office and call him to order, the group recalled alleged harassment and illegal efforts to remove the Chairman of the PDP in Udi Local Government Area of the State, Mr. Uche Ogbodo by some Enugu State Government functionaries with the blessing of the Chairman of the PDP, Engr. Vita Abba for his refusal to pander to their undemocratic interests as one of the instances of the chairman’s impunity.
Similarly, they alleged that Only a few days ago, some people under the Enugu State Government from Awgu Local Government Area issued a statement claiming the endorsement of Governor Sullivan Chime for Enugu West Senatorial seat by the Executive Council of the PDP in Awgu Local Government, but without any recourse whatsoever to the said Local Government Exco.
“You are also probably aware that four royal fathers who joined their subjects under the auspices of Ezeagu Local Government stakeholders and leaders of thought to an appreciation visit to the Deputy President of the Senate, His Excellency, Senator Ike Ekweremadu, CFR over the numerous development projects attracted to their communities are on the verge of losing their stools”.
Reacting to the allegations,the Enugu PDP Chairman, Abba described them as baseless and also laughable.
“On the purported allegation that I ordered that the traditional rulers who endorsed the Deputy Senate President, Senator Ike Ekweremadu for his Senatorial ambition in 2015 be dethrone, is not only false but also another ploy to ridicule my office and mislead the public”.
He said he has been running the affairs of party in the state since 2008 in line with the provisions of the PDP Constitution without any fear, favour or bias, and cannot under any circumstance deviate from that.