The Chairman of the National committee for All Progressives Congress (APC) Congress in Abia State, Hon. Kolawole Babatunde, has described a parallel congress conducted by a faction of the party in the state as “mere picnic.”
Babatunde who spoke while declaring the results of the elections, said the congress was peaceful and well conducted.
He said 1,277 delegates out of the 1,700 delegates were accredited for the exercise.
“The congress was peaceful and well conducted. People came out from the 17 LGAs. There is no victor or loser, APC won. You can see the response, and it was massive,” he said.
Babatunde who is a former member of the House of Representatives from Ondo state, said those who conducted a parallel congress risk sanction as his panel was the only one sent by the party’s national secretariat to conduct the state congress in the state.
He said, “Any individual or group organising another congress elsewhere is on picnic. The party constitution is very clear that there should be no parallel congress anywhere. There are sanctions for such individuals or groups.”
Elected at the congress are: Chief Enyinnaya Harbour as Chairman; Chief Grant Nwogu (Deputy Chairman), Chief Chidi Avoaja (Secretary), Mrs Chino Erondu (State Woman Leader), among others.
In his acceptance speech, the newly elected state chairman, Chief Enyinnaya Harbour, pledged to rebuild the APC in the state, adding that the doors of the party are open for genuine members.
“APC Abia State stands today at the threshold of a historic breakthrough that had eluded her since 2014. With today’s Congress so peacefully conducted by the National Committee, we are set to rebuild APC in Abia State. Our doors are now wider open to receive all men and women of goodwill that desire to see our dear State take to the top.
“Even as we welcome all, our Exco shall not be a breeding ground for anti party activities or tolerate anyone who claims to be APC at day and other parties at night. We accept the mandate to build a big united party in Abia.
“We have also come to restore their faith in our democracy and our electoral process as typified by our congress today,” he said.
The exercise, which took place at Chidiebere Motors Arena on Uzuakoli Rd, Umuahia, was monitored by officials of the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, and was attended by eminent members of the party from the 17 council areas of the state.
They were; Leader of the All Progressives Congress in Abia State and Secretary of the APC Contact and Strategy Committee, Deputy Chief Whip and member representing Isuikwuato/Umunneochi Federal Constituency, Hon. Nkeiruka Onyejeocha; former governorship aspirant, Sir FN Nwosu; ex-Organizing Secretary of the Nwankpa faction, Chief Obi Aham; and the member representing Isuikwuato Constituency in the state House of Assembly, Emeka Okoroafor and many others.