As the All Progressives Congress (APC) conducted their state congresses on Saturday, to elect state executives of the party in preparations for the 2023 general election, parallel congresses were conducted in several states across the country.
While the exercise went smoothly in most states, there were incidents of violence and attempted disruption in a few states, with the most common trend being the emergence of two set of executive members.
In Osun, APC factions held parallel congresses to elect the new leadership of the party.
The Ilerioluwa Group, a faction loyal to the governor of the state, Gboyega Oyetola, re-elected Gboyega Famodun as its chairman while the Osun Progressives (TOP), the faction loyal to a former governor of the state, Rauf Aregbesola, elected Rasaq Salinsile as its chairman.
In Ogun, loyalists of Dapo Abiodun, the governor of the state, elected Yemi Sanusi as the new chairman of the party, while the faction of Ibikunle Amosun, ex-governor of the state, elected Derin Adebiyi as its chairman.
Also, in Niger State, the APC ended its congress with two factions emerging. The first faction concluded its congress at a private building along Bay Clinic Road in Minna, the state capital.
This was few hours ahead of the other faction exercise attended by Governor Abubakar Sani Bello at the Justice Legbo International Conference Centre opposite the Government House, Minna with Alhaji Nasiru Yusuf Ubandiya emerging as Chairman, while the other had Alhaji Aliyu Jikantoro emerging as parallel Chairman.
In the South-East region, the Enugu State chapter of the party saw the emergence of two factions. Two sets of executives emerged with Adolphus Ude as chairman of one of the factions and Ugochukwu Agballah as chairman of the other faction.
It wasn’t smooth in Abia State as well, as one congress were held at Umuahia Township Stadium and the other at Ekene Dili Chukwu Motor Park.
While Chief Ikechi Emenike’s group held its own at the Ugwunchara area, loyalists of Hon. Donatus Nwankpa gathered at the indoor Sports Hall of the Umuahia township stadium.
The congress by Emenike’s group, monitored by officials of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) was attended by eminent members of the party from the 17 council areas of the state.
They were the member representing Isuikwuato/Umunneochi Federal Constituency, Hon. Nkeiruka Onyejeocha; former governorship aspirant, Sir Friday 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.
The case wasn’t different in Kwara State. A faction backed by the Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, elected Bashir Bolarinwa as the APC chairman of the state, while another faction loyal to the governor of the state, AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq, elected Sunday Fagbemi as its chairman.
Meanwhile, in Akwa Ibom, the group loyal to the Minister of Niger Delta affairs, Godswill Akpabio, elected Steve Ntukekpo as its chairman, while Austin Ekanem emerged as the chairman of the Akpan Udoedeghe-led faction.
In Lagos, a faction loyal to ex-Governor Akinwunmi Ambode held a parallel state congress that took place at the Baptist Academy, Obanikoro and produced Beatrice Omotayo Tugbobo as the first female chairman of the party in the state.
This was even as former Commissioner for Rural Development in Lagos State, Pastor Cornelius Ojelabi, emerged as the party chairman in the state through consensus.
In Kano, despite attempts to prevent the conduct of a parallel congress, the senator representing Kano Central, Ibrahim Shekaru, led a faction of the party loyal to him to conduct their congress and elected Ahmadu Haruna Zago as the state party Chairman.
Those in Shekaru’s camp included senator representing Kano North, Barau Jibril, member representing Dawakin Tofa and Rimingado Federal Constituency, Tijjani Abdulkadir Jobe, member representing Karate and Rogo Federal Constituency, Haruna Isa Dederi and member representing Kano Municipal Federal Constituency, Shaaban Ibrahim Sharada.
Meanwhile, there was a mild drama as security personnel took over and shot tear gas into the air to disperse party supporters at the Sani Abacha Youth Centre along Madobi road, the earlier proposed venue for the parallel congress.
In Bauchi, two parallel chairmen emerged at the Congress elections. Ripples Nigeria learnt that the emergence of the two leaders; Hon Babayo Aliyu Misau and Sunusi Aliyu Kunde both from Misau LGA was a result of power-play between Former Speaker House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara and Minister of Education, Adamu Adamu. While Misau is an ally of Adamu, Kunde is said to be a loyalist of Dogara.
In Sokoto State, two factions also emerged. A congress, which was held at the party state secretariat, was attended by a former governor of Sokoto State and Senator representing Sokoto Central, Aliyu Wamakko; Senator Ibrahim Gobir, the Minister for Police Affairs, Maigari Dingyadi, former Minister for Transport, Yusuf Suleiman, among others.
Isa Sadiq Acida was re-elected as the chairman at the congress while a splinter faction led by the three-term federal legislator, Abdullahi Balarabe Silame, produced Muhammad Daji as another state chairman.
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