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APC suspends party chairman as crisis worsens

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The crisis in the All Progressives Congress, Benue State chapter, worsens as APC Ehaje Ward 1 in Owukpa, Ogbadibo Local Government Area, passes a vote of no confidence in the party’s state chairman, Austin Agada.

According to a statement issued on Wednesday, signed by eight APC Ehaje Ward 1 members, the state chairman has also been suspended.

However, in a fast response, the supposedly suspended state chairman, Austin Agada, said that his suspension was null and void.

In a declaration signed by the ward chairman, Godwin Abah, and seven others from the state’s Ehaje council ward, Agada was accused of anti-party activities, and he refused to attend when invited by the exco.

Parts of the statement read, “Having established a prima facie case against Comrade Augustine Agada, the Expanded Exco of APC Ehaje Ward 1 in Owukpa of Ogbadibo LGA calls on the various party organs to take note and give life to our great APC party constitution.

“The decision this ward party exco has taken is that Comrade Augustine Agada, hitherto the APC Benue State Party Chairman, whose vote of no confidence has been passed on him by his party ward exco, is thereby suspended from the party. Based on Article 17, sub-sections V and Vi.

“We, the under-listed Ward Exco and Disciplinary Committee members of APC Ehaje Ward 1 in Owukpa of Ogbadibo LGA, have, therefore, unanimously signed this Ward Party resolution to save our darling Party APC in the Ward from total implosion due to Comrade Augustine Agada’s political malfeasance, embarrassment, and disrepute.

“To instill discipline, foster unity, and generally serve as a deterrent to would-be perpetrators of anti-party activities. This suspension takes immediate effect from today, Wednesday, January 31, 2024.

“The ward exco members therefore called on the relevant organs to appoint another person according to the party constitution.”

Agada, the state chairman, responded by stating that the putative chairman of the exco that signed the declaration had been seized as ward chairman since December 10.

Aside from that, he stated that the party’s constitution specifies the procedures for sanctioning any erring members.

He said, “The purported chairman has since December 10, 2023, seized to be the chairman of the ward, and he is currently a supervisory councillor in Ogbadibo Local Government.

“The person we have as chairman now is Peter Onoja, and besides that, there are procedures to follow in disciplining any erring member of the party.”

Agada, who stated that the ward executive was made up of 27 members, questioned how eight people who he claimed were not members of the EXCO would suspend, claiming that “the exercise was a nullity.”.

He explained that on Tuesday, a group from the national working committee visited the state to discuss how to move the party ahead in Benue.

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