BY EDIDEM UYA in Calabar•
The All Progressives Congress (APC), the Cross River State chapter, have sustained that the Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Pastor Usani Uguru Usani remains suspended from the party.
This was disclosed by some stakeholders of the party who spoke on the crisis bedevilling the party particularly the recently concluded state congress to fill the position of state chairman.
Speaking to journalists on the crisis, Hon. Ernest Irek, a chieftain of the party and former member of the federal House of Representatives, said that the Minister remains suspended because he has not appealed his suspension at any level or organ of the party.
He also said the recently conducted congress is a nullity because there was a subsisting injunction against the conduct of the said congress. He also decried the attitude of the National Organizing secretary of the party accusing him of complicity in the crisis bedevilling the party.
“There was no directive whatsoever by the national leadership of the party to organize a state congress in Cross River, our party constitution is clear that there should be fourteen days before such a congress can be conducted in the state.
“In this case, the said directive was not adhered to and as loyal party men, we tried to address this too no avail. There was a valid court injunction, which was ignored by those who organized the congress.
“The Chairman, Deputy national chairman and six vice chairmen exist in hierarchy before the Osita Izunaso who is the National Organizing Secretary. He (Osita) jumps into the fray when he should not and keeps talking to the press in place of the National Publicity secretary, which is very wrong”, he said.
He accused him of working in cohort with the Minister of Niger Delta Affairs to fuel crisis in the party and called on the President to urgently wade into the crisis facing the party in the state.
Also speaking, Comrade Iso Bassey Edim an APC stalwart and Chairman of the coalition of APC support groups in the state said the minister’s suspension is still valid and emphasised that John Ochalla remains the acting chairman of the party.
He accused the minister of working with the governor of the state to frustrate the party at the state level because the party has a good chance of assuming power in the state.
He said that right from his time as chairman of the party in the state till this moment, the Minister has never spoken out against the misdemeanour and utter failure of the governor saying this underscores his collusion with the governor to undermine the party to his advantage.
Also speaking, Egere Osim, said that the recent congress in the state was invalid as INEC was not notified of it in line with Section 85 (1) of the constitution. He also said the National Legal Adviser of the party is not on the same page with those who organised the said congress.