The spate of election rigging in the 2007 elections as all Nigerians gape at, which the Court of law is unfolding in many areas today, has become a bane the Rivers State chapter of the Action Congress would not like to repeat in the coming 2011 elections in Nigeria, but especially in Rivers State.
In a recent statement signed by the party's Publicity Secretary, Chief Eze Chukwuemeka Eze said that Prince Austin Eweka led a South-South leadership of the Action Congress in Port Harcourt, the Rivers State Capital, on the 18th of February, 2009, to familiarize and reposition the Action Congress for the challenges ahead of it for the
2011 general elections.
Prince Austin Eweka when him and his team paid a visit to the leader of the Rivers State AC at his residence at old GRA in Port Harcourt said: "We have toured Cross River State, Akwa Ibom State, Bayelsa State from 13th to 17th February and today we are in Rivers State to assess the performance of the State Chapter, listen to the problems facing the Chapter and proffer solutions where necessary and give an insight into the future of the party in the Zone and Nigeria as a whole as we have done in the states we have visited so far.
“We have listened to the state of the party in Rivers State and feel proud and happy of the steps taken by the Chapter to keep the party afloat. We will all the same direct the Chapter to take further step to bring back to the fold, some aggrieved members and other Nigerians that want to use the platform of the party to further their political ideals and better the lots of our people. These people must be identified and accommodated if the new vision and mission of the party to capture all the States in the zone come 2011 can be realized.”
Prince Eweka was later quoted as saying, “The Zone and the National Leadership of the party feel proud of the bi-partisan relationship with the Rivers ACr and the Amaechi-led PDP administration in Rivers State. We thank Prince Tonye TJT Princewill, the Rivers State AC leader for his sagacity, initiative and ingenuity in making the Chapter a study in political engineering and maneuvering in the Nigerian politics.
“The Rivers State Chapter remains the most compact, organized, cohesive, vibrant, proactive Chapter in the South-South and will feel that the standard and level the Chapter should be improved. The Chapter should also try to carry along other weaker Chapters in the Zone so that we can be our brother's keeper.
On the areas of problems facing the Chapter, like the plea for assistance in funding
the Chapter's problems, Prince Eweka said: we will study the request and get back to the chapter in due course, but most importantly, every member of the party must be a financial member of the party and it takes only N600.00 per annum for one to be a financial member of the party except the political appointees that are expected to pay higher fees ranging from N50,000.00 to N250,000.00, depending on the level of appointment or the office such an appointee is occupying within the party.
The South-South zone of the AC pointed hand on the Atiku's recent visit to Chief Obasanjo, and said through Prince Eweka thus, “to us, that visit is a private visit and has nothing to do with AC as a party; and besides the Party has made its position known and we are convinced that Atiku will not dump the party as his relevance and future lays within the party, but we are monitoring the unfolding scene and will act accordingly when necessary."
Reportedly, the Chairman of the party in Rivers State, Hon. Badey Alex Suage, had
earlier welcomed the National Vice Chairman and his Team to the State stated: "We feel proud to welcome Prince Austin Eweka, our indefatigable National Vice Chairman, whose love and interest in the Rivers State Chapter has literally earned him the title of the 'father' of the new Rivers State AC. The fact remains that without the inputs and
contributions of this master in political administration, the peace we are enjoying in the State would have been elusive. As our father, we will do everything to make his vision for the party and the Zone possible. It is a fact that we are in Unity Government with the
Government in the State, but that does not translate to cash as the burden of funding the party still lays on the shoulders of the State Leader and the burden is becoming too much on one single man and any assistance from the party will be highly appreciated".
It was gathered that other speakers praised the leadership qualities of the Rivers State leader of the party, Prince Tonye TJT Princewill and urged him not to relent until
the party gets to its maximum potential in the State. An elated Prince Tonye JTJ Princewill who spoke later thanked Prince Eweka and his Team for the visit and the encomiums poured on him for the little he has done in taking the party to the level it is today. Princewill was reportedly stated that members of the party will be happier by next time the zonal leadership visits the chapter again as all have marked out
strategies to empower members and the party as a whole.
Hear Princewill I am starting by formally donating two buses to the party today. One bus to the Women Wing for being a great and the most organized unit of the chapter, and one bus to the state secretariat of the party to assist the party run its affairs adequately. We will do everything humanly possible to take AC to any height but let me reiterate that I hate injustice and we teamed up with Amaechi for nothing else but to fight injustice perpetuated on us by the analogue politicians from our State who have made themselves fugitives in Abuja. Let me state for avoidance of doubt that if by tomorrow AC as a party becomes immoral and injustice vehicle, we will fight AC to a standstill. To us in Rivers State, the state comes first before AC or any other consideration. I am elated and so happy that the Federal High Court sitting in Abuja has in its wisdom struck out a suit filed by our son, Dr. Abiye Sekibo, fomer Minister of Transport that sought for the review of the judgment of the Supreme Court, which pronounced Honourable Chibuike Amaechi as the duly nominated candidate of PDP and the Governor of Rivers State. We have stated it at various foras that Amaechi becoming the Governor of Rivers State was a divine arrangement and no conspiracy or human plotting can change it. That is why I
sympathize with those wasting their resources and time going to Court
in order to remove a God gift to our state.”
Princewill further said that “with the facts and records before me, Amaechi will serve out his tenure and from there another thing can happen. But for now, any sound and patriotic son or daughter of Rivers State must come on board and assist Amaechi to move this State forward if we are truly interested to take the State to the next level.”
Dr. Brian Wilfred writes from Port Harcourt
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