Court to rule on authentic APGA chairman Wednesday

DPC asks INEC to hasten its registration process

A judge of the Federal High Court, Abuja, Abdulkadir Abdul-kafarati, will on Wednesday deliver judgement on who, between Victor Umeh and Maxi Okwu, is the authentic national chairman of the All Progressives Grand Alliance, APGA.

The court had set aside January 15 to give judgement in a suit FHC/ABJ/CS/563/2103 instituted by Mr. Okwu last August 19 against Mr. Umeh and all the officers of the party. Mr. Okwu sought an order directing the officials to vacate their offices; claiming they were not elected in accordance with Article 18 (4) of its constitution.

The section prescribes that election into offices of the party should be by secret ballot.

He also asked the court to direct the National Secretary, Sani Shinkafi, to vacate office having exhausted his two terms of four years each. Mr. Shinkafi, he said, was elected first in January 10, 2003.

Mr. Okwu asked the court to declare him the authentic national chairman and also direct the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, to deal with him in that capacity.

Meanwhile, a political association, Democratic People’s Congress, DPC, has demanded its registration as a party having fulfilled all prerequisite constitutional and statutory conditions for that purpose.

In a communiqué read to journalists by its spokesperson, Chinedu Onyema, after its National Executive Committee, NEC, meeting on Tuesday, DPC frowned at the alleged delay tactics being employed by the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, to conclude the process of its registration.

“An open, free and honest electoral system is fundamental to the attainment of a democratic society,” the association said. “An effective government requires a strong, responsible, and competitive political party system. As a corollary, NEC is optimistic that the Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission INEC, Professor Attahiru Jega will tow the path of honour and release the certificate of registration of Democratic People’s Congress in the interest of justice, competitive democracy and good conscience.”

DPC asked INEC to be proactive by releasing the authentic voters register and permanent voters’ card early enough ahead of the build up to the 2015 general elections.

This, it said would eliminate monumental fraud, rigging and electoral malpractices that marred elections in recent times.

The association condemned the sustained onslaught on the rule of law and the deteriorating reign of impunity in Rivers State.

It said, “NEC is worried that the resort to flagrantly unconstitutional means to achieve selfish, anti-people interests directly threatens the peace, stability, and continued corporate existence of our dear nation and appeal to the major players to stop heating up the polity, creating tension all over the place, out of personal interest, greed, avarice and aggrandizement without regard to the survival of our hard won nascent democracy.” 

The association urged the Federal Government to be alive to its primary responsibilities of good governance, security of lives and property, as well as the welfare of the people.

It also urged the Federal Government to ensure that security agencies did not function in such a manner as to create the impression that they were willing tools of narrow, selfish and unpatriotic interests. It commended the resolution of the university lecturers strike and asked President Goodluck Jonathan not to be distracted in his duties as president.



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