A top ranking national officer of the All Progressives Congress, name withheld, has revealed that the party has indeed plans to hold fresh congresses in Rivers State. The official who spoke to the Telegraph on phone in Abuja remarked that plans are currently underway to set up new party structures in the State. Recall that the Rivers APC could not field any candidates as a result of a gruesome struggle for power which preceded the last elections. “What did Amaechi do wrong?”, the official who said he had seen the statement issued by Senator Magnus Abe queried. “We have sent notice of the planned congress to INEC billed for September, and we are only waiting for the 21 days expiration period as allowed by law. “It is real. We are waiting to roll into action”, the official hinted. The Telegraph has learnt that the notice which is before INEC was signed by the National Party Chairman, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole and the party’s Secretary, Victor Giadom. Under the law, INEC which is on notice does not need to approve the date of the congress. “It is merely for its information “, the national official further disclosed. “We already have an auspicious date in September for the congresses to hold”, the official added. In Rivers State where the forthcoming congresses seem to be generating rancour, especially in the Abe camp, there has been no reactions from other stakeholders. Observers say the impression that is emerging suggest that Abe who might be in the political wilderness, given what is playing out, may have spoken up in a bid to keep a strong hold on his supporters. Abe had said in his statement that even though he is out of office, he is still a politician. “What kind of Congress, is he the Chairman of the party? Is he the National Working Committee? Is he the Court? What gives him the power to come and announce congress on the day he was inaugurated as Minister?”, Abe asked. “Everybody in Nigeria knows that the origin of the crisis in Rivers APC was from the Congress and how the Congress was handled, and there are extant judicial pronouncements on the last congress which the party was misled to ignore”, Abe said. He observed that “we have all kept quiet in the hope that by keeping quiet we will create room for resolution of these challenges so the party can move forward”. But from the run of events, it is apparent that the proposed congress may not be Amaechi’s making. Worried by the existence of what looks like parellel party structures in Rivers, the APC may have come to the conclusion that charting a new path may well be the best way to end the imbroglio. Will Abe and his supporters participate in the planned congress or would they head for the court? In Rivers political circles where anger sometimes overrides reason, only time will tell.
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