The House of Representatives Committee Chairman on Climate Change, member representing Ikwuano -Umuahia federal Constituency and the APC Senatorial Candidate for Abia Central Senatorial District in the just conducted 2023 general elections, Hon. Sam Onuigbo, has declared that the purported suspension of chieftains of the All Progressives Congress, APC in Abia State, would not save the party’s governorship candidate in the March 18 governorship poll, Chief Ikechi Emenike, from accounting for the campaign fund released to him for the general elections in the state.
The lawmaker who stated this in an exclusive interview with Vanguard was reacting to his purported suspension by the state leadership of the party recently, dismissed it as “ridiculous”, stressing that Chief Emenike and his foot soldiers were trying to avert probe for how the campaign funds for the party candidates in Abia were spent.
“They gave him money from the national party and he has to account for how he disbursed it.
“He was going about campaigning against me instead of campaigning for the APC and the President -elect. He lost in all the places he campaigned against me including his polling unit.
Onuigbo was on Tuesday, in a letter signed by the party’s Secretary, Chief Chidi Avajah, suspended along with eight other bigwigs of Abia APC for alleged anti party activities during the just-concluded general elections.
According to the APC Abia Central Senatorial Candidate, ” Despite all the money that the national leadership confirmed to us that was given to him for Abia, he was only able to deliver a paltry 8,000 votes for the President- elect.”
Rep. Sam Onuigbo said he remained a bonafide member of the APC, insisted that his purported suspension “holds no water. I don’t see the basis for such frivolous, absolutely irresponsible and reckless letter”.
He explained that suspension of members of a party is based on established anti-party activities. “You don’t wake up in the morning and start suspending people; gather men like puppets and ask them to sign suspension letters.
“My Ward didn’t suspend me. I remain a bonafide member of APC, and I’m working here in Abuja with the National leadership, handling some very important matters concerning our party in the state.
Rep Onuigbo further denied working for the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, candidate for his federal constituency, Rt. Hon. Chinedum Orji, contrary to allegation contained in the letter of his purported suspension.
He claimed that the PDP candidate and others were part of why he left the PDP for the APC in the first place, querying the wisdom in his turning around to work for him at the poll.
“They said that I openly support and worked for the LP Candidate Mr Peter Obi and Hon. Chinedum Orji of the PDP. Such allegation is very ridiculous because it was the same Chinedum Orji that was instrumental to my leaving PDP because he was angling for my position.
“So, how on earth will I go and work for the person who conspired and worked against me because he was angling to take over my position in the House of Representatives? Is it as a reward for his efforts or in recognition of his achievements?” Rep. Onuigbo queried. “He worked with Col. Akobundu for me to leave PDP.”
The Federal Lawmaker described as appalling that the State Chairman and Secretary of a party where he ran for Senate would say that he is from “Ward 3, Ikwuano LGA”. “Apparently, Avajah and Kingsley Ononogbu are unaware of how the wards in Ikwuano are delineated. Neither do they know my ward! That alone should speak to the conspiratorial nature of all the actions taken by the State leaders of the party against me during the election, including not supporting me, and openly campaigning against me. It further shows that this dubious suspension letter has no foundation because it didn’t come from my ward. ”
He further questioned “Chief Avajah and Kingsley Ononogbu stated that I did not participate in APC activities at the Ward level, LGA, and State level. My ward is Ibere Ward 2, and I led campaigns at that level. Can Chief Avajah, Kingsley Ononogbu , and their cohorts who never joined me for a day to campaign point me to the Ward activity that I was not part of? At the LGA level, at what point did they invite me and I did not join? This attitude of completely cutting me off was further proven during the Presidential campaign of our President-elect, His Excellency Senator Bola Ahmed Tinubu where despite subsisting court orders that I am the Senatorial Candidate of our party, they conspired and put another person’s name on the brochure. Despite the fact that the campaign held in my constituency and I was physically present, I was deliberately ignored. Before the end of the event, my campaign team made several attempts to get them to recognize me as the host House of Representatives member present, but were rebuffed each time. Was it at that time that I failed to join party activities at the State level?
Rep. Onuigbo accused Chief Emenike of destroying Abia APC because of his selfish interests, wondering how he thinks he could run the party without other chieftains who mean well for the party and are making verifiable contributions to uplift the party. He has turned Abia APC into a one man small kiosk managed by him alone and where he does whatever he pleases.
“I have never seen anybody like Emenike who wants to dismantle anywhere that he finds himself.”
“For a primary election that I won in the afternoon, the person I defeated was rewarded with ministerial appointment, then Emenike went and brought somebody who was coming in like unknown flying object who never participated in the primary election.
Ikechi and his team continued to lead that man to eight (8) courts, ending up in the Supreme Court where the apex court affirmed my candidacy because the meddlesome interloper never participated in the primary election.”
Hon. Onuigbo advised Emenike and his co-travellers who he accused of destroying Abia APC, to stop engaging in actions that would bring further disgrace to the party.
He urged the National Leadership of the APC to immediately call Chief Ikechi Emenike to account for the money he was given for all the elections.
“I am recommending Chief Emenike for psychiatric examination considering his role in the continued destruction of APC in Abia State instead of working with well meaning members to rebuild the party after a disastrous outing which was caused by him,” Onuigbo advised.