Guber primaries: Enugu PDP disowns Senator Eze

By The Citizen

The Enugu State chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, yesterday disowned Senator Ayogu Eze, saying his claim of being the party's gubernatorial candi­date, was false.

Similarly, the party also described as untrue the claim by Senator Ayogu Eze, that he won the party's primary in the state.

In a statement signed by the party's publicity secretary, Dr. Okey Eze, the party insisted that the primary elec­tion, which held at the Nnamdi Azikiwe Stadium and which was attended by INEC and other stakeholders, which produced Hon. Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, was the authentic one.

According to the party, even the PDP Governorship Primary Election Panel from Abuja headed by King Asara Asara, was at the said venue and duly conducted the election with the official delegates list, ballot papers, and result sheets all obtained from the party headquarters.

It further said in the end, it announced the result and declared Hon. Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, as the winner, having obtained a total of 937 votes out of the 983 votes cast.

The statement further said: 'All the statutory delegates of the Enugu State Chapter of the PDP, including Gover­nor Sullivan Chime and his Deputy; the Deputy President of the Senate, Senator Ike Ekweremadu; the State Chairman of the PDP and all state party officials; all Members of the National Assembly from Enugu State (except Senator Ayogu Eze); all members of the Enugu State House of Assembly (including the Speaker and gubernatorial aspirant, Hon. Eugene Odo); all Local Government Council Chairmen and Local Government party Chairmen; Board of Trustee members, including the former National Chairman of the PDP, Dr. Okwesilieze Nwodo, etc. were all present and voted at the primary held at the sta­dium, along with the elected delegates.

'Some gubernatorial aspirants, such as Chief Anayo Onwuegbu and Hon. Chinedu Onu, who withdrew from the gubernatorial race in the interest of the peace and cohesion of our party, were also in attendance.

'It is noteworthy that Senator Ayogu Eze, by his own admission, claimed that his purported 'election' was conducted at Filbon Hotel, Enugu. The said venue was not recognised by the PDP, its National Panel for the gubernatorial primary elec­tion, INEC, and other relevant agencies for the conduct of the election, hence their absence at the illegal venue and charade,' it added

Querying the authenticity of the Senator Ayogu Eze's claim further, the party asked 'Since the bodies authorised by the party, the 1999 Constitution, and the Electoral Act 2010 to organise/supervise/observe primary elections were all absent, which ballot papers, result sheets, and certificate of return did Senator Ayogu Eze use?

'Senator Eze also admitted that it was the delegates, who were supposed to vote at the primary election that conducted his purported primary election. Who certi­fied and accredited the delegates? Do our laws, party constitution and guidelines for primary elections permit aspirants to just assemble a handful of rented passers-by to assume both the roles of delegates, elec­tion organisers, returning officers, INEC, etc. and declare themselves winners?'

Meanwhile, a prominent member of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Board of Trustees who was a delegate to the December 8, 2014 governorship primary election of the Party in Enugu State, Amb. Mrs. Justina Eze yesterday lampooned Senator Ayogu Eze for his utterances, vituperation and false claims that he was 'the duly elected candidate of the party for the February general elections'.

Reacting to the 'uncultured comments' made amongst other unprintable allegations, by  Senator Eze in the national dailies that the PDP governorship primary election held at Nnamdi Azikiwe Stadium, which produced Hon Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi as the Party's candidate, was an 'assemblage of passersby, touts, cheerleaders and office messengers', Amb Eze expressed utter  dismay over Senator Ayogu Eze's rude choice of words against the integrity of the Party and the personalities that attended the said primary election.

She further called on the State and National leadership of the Party to take appropriate disciplinary actions against his utterances.

She stated that Senator Ayogu Eze's submissions and false allegations concerning the primary election held at Nnamdi Azikiwe Stadium, Enugu were inconsequential, mischievous, baseless and unfounded, stressing that the exercise was duly conducted in line with the PDP constitution, the Party's guidelines for the primaries and the 2010 electoral act.

Amb. Eze noted that Senator Eze's false claim that he held a parallel governorship primary election elsewhere in Enugu, was only a media hype mischievously anchored to cause confusion in the Party, mislead the public and discredit the duly conducted primary election that took place at Nnamdi Azikiwe Stadium, Enugu, which was attended by 983 delegates, including the Governor and State leader of the Party, Sullivan Chime, the Deputy Senate President,  Chief Ike Ekweremadu, the State Deputy Governor, Rev Ralph Nwoye, the Hon. Minster of Power, Prof. Chinedu Nebo, all members of the National Assembly except Senator Ayogu Eze, former Senate President, Senator Ken Nnamani, former PDP National Chairman, Dr. Okwesilieze Nwodo, the Speaker (Hon. Eugene Odo) and other members of the Enugu State House of Assembly, members of the State Executive Committee of the Party, 17 Local Government Chairmen and their deputies and most importantly, all the Ad-hoc delegates duly recognized by the National Leadership of the Party.

Amb. Eze further added that since Senator Ayogu Eze did not dispute the fact that the five-man Electoral Panel from the National Secretariat of the Party headed by His Highness, King Asara Asara and the Enugu State Resident Electoral Commissioner of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Dr. Lawrence Azubuike and his team were present at the governorship primary election held at Nnamdi Azikiwe Stadium, Enugu, which produced Ugwuanyi as the governorship candidate of the Party in Enugu State, his allegations and negative comments against the exercise remain a nullity and should be disregarded in all its ramifications. - Additional report from The Sun.