There is intense panic and a feeling of enormous unease at the Awka Government House following the out come of a case at the Appeal Court which Governor Willie Obiano had hoped to benefit from.
The Court of Appeal, sitting in Abuja, yesterday adjourned till December 14, 2017, the appeal brought by Dr Victor Oye, the former National Chairman of the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA).
Oye was removed last week by an Enugu High Court, in a suit he instituted against the decisions of the National Working Committee of APGA which sacked him on 5th October 2016.
The Enugu High Court had in an unrelated matter (Suit No. E/192M/2017) on 22nd day of May, 2017 enforced the decisions of the NWC which Dr. Oye tried to circumvent.
The court, presided over by Justice A. R. Ozoemena, had sacked the Victor Oye led NWC and had ordered INEC and the Inspector General of Police to recognize Chief Martin Agbaso, a foundation chieftain of the party, as the APGA new National Chairman.
Governor Obiano had hoped that with the Dr Oye-led APGA NWC, his position as the unopposed APGA candidate at the November 18 gubernatorial election in the state was guaranteed.
However, with the long adjournment at the Appeal Court beyond and long after the three-month deadline for nominations, which falls on August 18th, there is the general fear that the Agbaso-led APGA NWC would insist on providing a level-playing ground in the party by opening up the gubernatorial candidacy of the party through a proper democratic nomination process to accommodate all other aspirants who had been allegedly side-lined by the Oye leadership.
Our correspondent was told by sources at the Government House, Awka, that because of the obvious hostility exhibited to the new Agbaso leadership, it is being feared that if the nomination is thrown open to accommodate the many qualified aspirants in the state, Governor Obiano might come out the second best.
However, sources close to Chief Agbaso, the new APGA National Chairman, maintain that Chief Agbaso, who is said to be irrevocably committed to the maintenance of democratic ideals, is expected to act within the confines of the party’s constitution with keen eyes on providing a level playing ground to all members of the party, big and small.
The Media and Public Affairs Advisor to the APGA National Chairman, Chief Uche Ezechukwu, said that Ochudo Martin Agbaso will ensure that transparency, justice and democracy will be enthroned henceforth in the affairs of the party – to enable it accommodate everybody under the party’s canopy.
“By so doing, the party (APGA), which is seen and regarded as a mass movement, would continue to live up to its billing as belonging to all,” Chief Ezechukwu said.
All efforts to get the reaction of Dr Victor Oye’s camp remained abortive as at our press time.