2023 Governorship: Abia APC rallies round Emenike

Following reconciliation of the factions in the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Abia State, the party looks good to wrest power from the ruling People’s Democratic Party (PDP) in the 2023 Governorship election.

The two factions of the Abia APC ended their eight-year-old leadership tussle on June 18 and affirmed Chief Ikechi Emenike as the state leader and governorship candidate of Abia APC and Dr Kingsley Ononogbu as the state chairman.

They also set up a 7-man Interim State Working Committee of the party to ensure Abia APC stakeholders work together to achieve victory in the 2023 polls. The committee has Honourable Donatus Nwankpa as Chairman and Dr Emmanuel Aguzie Ndukwe as the Secretary. Other members of the committee are Egwuatu Egbulefu (Treasurer); Chief Obi Aham (Organizing Secretary); Comrade Benedict Godson (Publicity Secretary); Honourable Helen Ojukwu (Women Leader); and Honourable Augustine Anyaegbu (Youth Leader).

The reconciliation and unification meeting was held at the country home of a former member of the House of Representatives, Chief Emeka Atuma at Ntalakwu Oboro, Ikwuano Local Council, where the two factions resolved to collapse into one united APC and work collectively for the party to take over Abia in 2023.

The Abia APC became factionalised in 2014, following a leadership tussle between the former state Chairman, Chief Donatus Nwankpa, and a chieftain of the party, Chief Ikechi Emenike.

In 2015, the Nwankpa-led faction presented Chief Anyim Nyerere as its Governorship Candidate against Emenike, who contested the governorship position under Dr Emmanuel Ndukwe as the factional chairman.

The party also presented two Gubernatorial Candidates along the two factional leaderships in 2019, with the former Minister of Mines and Steel Development, Chief Uche Ogah, running against Emenike.

During the APC Governorship Primary held in Umuahia on the 26th of May, 2022, Emenike had won the APC Governorship Primary, polling a total of 672 votes out of 907 votes to clinch the party’s ticket for the APC governorship ticket. His closest rival Emeka Atuma got 159 votes while the immediate past Minister of State for Mines, Uche Ogah polled six votes.

However, another faction claimed Uche Ogah was the Abia APC Governorship candidate.

At the reconciliation meeting, Honourable Nwankpa formally handed over the baton of leadership to the incumbent state chairman, Dr Kingsley Ononogbu in the presence of the teeming party supporters across the state. This automatically brought to an end the long-drawn battle between the various party factions in the state.

Addressing the leaderships of the party from the 184 wards and 17 local government areas at the end of the reconciliation meeting, the two gladiators — Nwankpa and Emenike — said the war was over.

According to Nwankpa, in politics, there is no permanent enemy but permanent interest.

In accepting the mandate bestowed on him, Chief Emenike promised to rescue Abia State from the claws of underdevelopment which has plagued the state since the inception of Nigeria’s democracy in 1999. He is riding on the massive goodwill of all Abians to engender the process of progressive change aimed at ushering in unprecedented growth and development in the state. And to this, the APC in the state has pledged to stand by him and help to achieve his dream of a rescue mission.

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