Perhaps born out of the nationwide acceptance of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) as the party to beat in the upcoming general election in the country, the quest for its ticket by aspirants have become very fierce and unruly in some instances and even sordid in some states as have been reported in the national dailies.
And in some extreme cases, some persons otherwise held in honor and esteem by the populace have done things that tended to circumvent the growth and stability of this democracy that we all cherish, exposing in a single breadth such character and attitude that one will not ordinarily attribute to them.
It is in this vein, that I read with astonishing perplexity the press release said to have been personally signed by Senator Ayogu Eze, one of the governorship aspirants to the concluded governorship primaries in Enugu state and the Senator representing Enugu North Senatorial zone in the red chambers of the National Assembly, in Daily Sun of Wednesday, December 10, 2014 in which he claims to be the validly elected PDP candidate in the said election.
All who have followed Senator Eze’s performance at the senate would agree that he has shown some sparks of brilliance in his contributions to issues and debates at the floor of the senate. But one wonders whether it was a fatigue of the brain or the mind, perhaps born out of the stress of the struggle to the Lion Building, Enugu that made him adduce such unconvincing arguments in the said release.
Senator Eze persists that the PDP governorship primaries held at the Nnamdi Azikiwe stadium, Enugu, the NWC designated venue for the exercise was flawed and that it had “an assemblage of passersby, touts, cheerleaders and office messengers who were hurriedly railroaded to the venue as a face saving measure by the government”. With respect to the distinguished Senator, this in all ramifications is an “Unparliamentarily language” and it will be difficult to explain away such rude and uncomplimentary language that he used on the delegates to that primary election which included such statutory delegates like the Executive Governor of Enugu State, Barr. Sullivan Chime, his deputy governor, Rev. Ralph Nwoye, Deputy Senate President, Senator Ike Ekweremadu, former Senate president, Senator Ken Nnamani, Former national Chairman of PDP, Dr. Okwesileze Nwodo, Senator Gill Nnaji and all the members of the House of Representatives, the speaker of Enugu state House of Assembly, Barr. Eugene Odo and all the members of Enugu state House of Assembly, Enugu state PDP Chairman and his deputy, 17 local Government Council Chairmen and their deputies and Local Government party Chairmen and Secretaries.
If we concede the right to contest the authenticity of the list of Adhoc delegates to Senator Eze, Can he say in all honesty that any of these statutory delegates came to his own primaries conducted at a hotel down town?
He also averred that he has high regards for governorship electoral panel headed by King Asara Asara, but that “their hands were tied by the manipulations that formulated the list at the party headquarters in Abuja”. Sen. Eze should be asked if any of these men and women of integrity that constituted the panel and whom he so much respects ever visited, his chosen venue, the Filbon Hotel? If the answer is in the negative, who then, conducted the said primaries for which he claims to be the rightful candidate? Or did he conduct and announce the result all by himself?
What of the venue of the election, which the party headquarters is required by law to publish to the notice of all aspirants, stakeholders and delegates. Did Senator Eze refer to the headquarters in choosing a different venue from the Nnamdi Azikiwe stadium, Enugu that has been so designated? Isn’t this an infraction of the PDP electoral guidelines and the parties’ constitution?
While we agree with the distinguished Senator Ayogu Eze that governorship is too serious a business to be treated with levity and carelessness. It is important to point out that all who aspire to occupy that position should at all times be true to themselves and play by the rules of the game and be and gracious, and sportsmanly enough to concede defeat when others have won.
The truth of the matter in this particular instance, is that Hon. Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, did unanimously and overwhelmingly win the PDP governorship primaries conducted at Nnamdi Azikiwe stadium by 933 votes to 26 votes scored by the Speaker of Enugu state House of Assembly, RT Hon. Eugene Odo, and was duly declared elected by the chairman of the electorate panel, his highness, King Asara Asara, to the joy and happiness of the delegates and the entire people of Enugu state.
Of truth also, is that Hon. Chinedu Onuh and Engr. Anayo Onwuegbu had before the commencement of the election stepped down their own ambition in the interest of peace and unity among party members, even though they were at Nnamdi Azikiwe stadium, Enugu, the venue of the election.
Any other claim to the contrary smacks of mischief, with the deliberate intent to misinform and mislead the general public and should be regarded as such.
Francis Ede, Public affairs analyst,
Wrote in from Abuja.