APC Will Never Be Party To Okowa’s Failed Government --- State Chairman
Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC) Delta State chapter, Prophet Jones Ode Erue has said his party would have nothing to do with the grant given to political parties in the state by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP)-led government of Senator (Dr) Ifeanyi Arthur Okowa.
According to Prophet Erue, “the All Progressives Congress Delta State will not, cannot and will never collect any money in the name of grant or otherwise from the failed Okowa-led PDP government in Delta State”.
This was contained in a press statement Tuesday, signed by the chairman of the party in the state and made available to newsmen after an enlarged meeting of the party over alleged anti-party activities of the State Secretary, Mr Chidi Okonji.
Hear him: “a government that could not pay workers salaries for over 10 months in spite of the bail out fund given to it by the APC led federal government. A government that could not revamp the existing but decay insfrastructure in the state let alone build new ones. A government that has illegally reduced the salary of workers by over 60 per cent without recourse to their economic well-being”.
Prophet Erue continued: “a government that has unconstitutionally sacked over 600 civil servants on the flimsy excuse that they were not employed through due process. A government that has failed to pay salaries of local government/council workers for over 13 months, thereby defeating the purpose for setting up the third tier of government. A government that has smartly increase the pains and woes of Deltans by astronomically increasing tertiary school fees by over 50 per cent”, adding that Deltans are yet to feel the impact of Okowa’s smart agenda two years after.
He said the PDP led government for the sustenance of their evil mechanization decided to employ the services of her suspended secretary-Comrade Chidi Okonji and others whose identities will soon be unravelled, “the APC Delta State takes exception to the activities of these political miscreants and these issues will be decisively dealt with”, he assued.
Meanwhile, the party has suspended Mr Okonji, its state secretary for alleged anti-party activities indefinitely from office pending the report of a 5-man Disciplinary Committee set up to investigate his anti-party activities in accordance with provisions of Artcle21 of the constitution of “our great party. That the allegation against the secretary borders on criminal forgery, fraudulent coversion and connivance with the Delta State government where in he unilaterally collected the sum of N600, 000 as purported grant from the Delta State government without the knowledge and permission of the hierarchy of the party”.
Erue said, “This action became necessary as the party will not condole criminal activities within its fold which is capable of bringing the party to disrepute and public approbrium”.
However, Mr Okonji, who opened the bowl of worm, rubbished his purported suspension, saying that there was no meeting of the party's State Executive Council (SEC) made of 35 members which has the constitutional right to suspend him.
On the alleged N600, 000 bribe money, Mr. Okonji said he was duly authorized by the state chairman to collect the grant of which he (chairman) appropriated half to himself.
“Prophet Jones Erue authorized me, Chidi Okonji through a letter to collect the grant of N500, 000.00 only on behalf of the party which Prophet Jones Erue splitted into two and collected half. He further insisted that the amount ought to be N600, 000, and that he was going to see the SSA to confirm the amount”, Okonji said in a counter statement made available to newsmen.
According to him, the present crisis started when he (Okonji) asked the chairman to “return the party bus donated by former Vice President Abubakar Atiku; call SEC meeting to address burning issues including the 13.5 million Christmas gift given to the party”.
Okonji added that he also asked the chairman “to account for the N5 million given to run the party every month; and to stop using his personal account to siphon money from the party account”.
He said his “purported suspension is null and void as the nine person-meeting (State Working Committee) lack the constitutional power to suspend or apply any punitive action without the approval of SEC”.
He therefore called on the national leadership of the party to set up a committee to look into the allegedly endless financial crisis of the state executive led by Prophet Erue, and that the chairman should give financial accounts of his stewardship since 2013.