The leadership of the All Progressives Congress says it is has not formally received application from Jim Nwobodo, former governor of old Anambra State, and Barth Nnaji, former minister of power, to join the party
| By Anayo Ezugwu | May 25, 2015 @ 01:00 GMT |
THE leadership of the All Progressives Congress, APC, in Enugu State has denied media reports that it rejected Jim Nwobodo, former governor of old Anambra State, and Barth Nnaji, former minister of power from joining the party. The party stated that it was open to everybody who wishes to join in accordance with the provisions of the party’s constitution. In a statement signed by Ben Nwoye, chairman of the APC in Enugu State, said the report did not reflect the position of the party.
He said neither Nwobodo nor Nnaji applied either in writing or in verbal communication to join the party and that the party could only reject people when they apply. Nwoye’s statement said in part: “Nnaji is an eminent son of Enugu State, a patriotic citizen and a statement in his own right. Accordingly, I led a group of party leaders to pay him a courtesy visit on Sunday, May 10, 2015. Unfortunately, those who are jostling for ministerial position have capitalised on our well-intended visit to our illustrious son to engage in character assassination and political blackmail. These short-sighted ministerial hunters have forgotten that Nnaji is a world acclaimed robotic engineer, a former minister of power and a man credited with developing a roadmap for steady power supply for this nation…
“As to Nwobodo, he is a living icon and an elder statesman. In my personal opinion, he is the only Ibo man alive comparable to Dr. Nnamdi Azikiwe. Nwobodo celebrated his 75 birthday on May 9, 2015, as a chairman of a progressive party in Enugu State, I felt that he deserves a public announcement congratulating him on his 75 birthday. Unfortunately, that singular act was misread. His political detractors took to the public media in an attempt to diminish his personal achievements and assassinate my character.” He, however, said the APC as a political party is open to anybody to join in accordance with the party’s constitution. He also said it would be an honour for him to welcome Nwobodo or Nnaji to the APC.
The media report of Tuesday, May 12, attributed to Kate Offor, state publicity secretary of the party, had alleged that Nnaji was lobbying leaders of the party in the state to grab Enugu State ministerial slot in the incoming administration. Offor, therefore, announced the rejection of Nnaji and Nwobodo from joining the party, saying that they were not in a hurry to admit any member of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, into its fold.
Offor, who made the allegation while briefing newsmen on the outcome of its enlarged state executive committee meeting, described the move as medicine after death. She warned that the party would sanction any member found to be covertly or overtly involved in any plot to admit any of the PDP members until a time authorised by the party. “At an enlarged meeting of the State Executive Committee of Enugu State Chapter of APC, we unequivocally resolved that the membership drive aimed at enlisting Prof. Barth Nnaji, Chief Jim Nwobodo and co into our great party be stopped forthwith… Whereas, we hold Professor Nnaji, robotic engineer and our elder statesman, Chief Jim Nwobodo, and other eminent sons in very high esteem, we, however, frowns seriously on clandestine moves of some people reaping where they did not sow,” she said.