Anambra: UPP plunged into crisis, suspends Chidoka and Offordile, Chekwas threatened
There was uncertainty on Tuesday over reports that the United Peoples Party (UPP) has suspended former aviation minister, Osita Chidoka and Chief Chudi Ofodile, both governorship aspirants of the party.
This is coming at the moment UPP is about to hold it’s primaries.
UPP Awka suspends Chidoka and Offordile. National UPP dissolves the state executive. Trouble brewing in the party.
The party claimed that it handed down the suspension on Tuesday over alleged anti-party activities. Affected apart from Chidoka and Ofodile, were the National Treasurer of the party, Mr Flint Obiekwe and Chief Nwabueze Anyichie, the party’s Deputy National Secretary.
The Publicity Secretary of the party in the state, Chief Uche Amaku, said the four were suspended for allegedly indulging in acts aimed at undermining the authority of the state executive of the party.
Contributing to the crisis chief Ifeanyichukwu Okonkwo (aka Onwa Nnobi), a governorship aspirant in the party has served a 7 day ultimatum to Chekwas Okorie to resign as party chairman of UPP or fave humiliation and jail term. (see below documents)
There are speculations that the present crisis is precipitated by attempt to foist Chidoka on the party. Chidoka is accused of being in league with some PDP personalities to have Chidoka as governor after which he will decamp to the PDP.
But in a swift reaction, the National Working Committee (NWC) of the party suspended the acting State Working Committee (SWC) of the party in Anambra State and suspended Ifeanyichukwu Okonkwo.
The campaign team of Chidoka and Chidoka himself, along with Ofodile, also debunked the suspension.
The Campaign Group said: “Our attention has been drawn to reports circulating in a section of the media that frontline contender in the November 18, 2017 Anambra governorship election, Chief Osita Chidoka has been suspended from our great party, the United Progressive Party (UPP).
“This is totally misleading and aimed at destabilizing our great party ahead of our governorship election primaries scheduled for August 19, 2017.
“For the avoidance of doubt and to set the record straight, Chief Osita Chidoka has not been suspended from the party and he is not facing any disciplinary issues whatsoever with the party.
“While we are aware of forces outside our party bent at causing confusion within our ranks having realised our massive support from the people ahead of the elections, we state in very strong terms that they are fighting a lost battle as we are not in anyway distracted in our mission to return Anambra back to the people come November 18, 2017.”
Dr Sylvester Igwilo, the Chairman of UPP in the state, said Chidoka and Ofodile did not show documentary evidence of their resignation from PDP as required by Article 7 paragraph B of UPP Constitution.
He also said both aspirants introduced money politics in the party and induced members to gain advantage.
“They have introduced money politics of inducing members with cash donation which tends to bring the image of the party to ridicule.
“Both aspirants were found to have deposited five million naira into the account of the party without the consent and approval of state executive committee.
“They had also appeared for a purported screening without the approval and authority of the state executive committee outside the provision in the party’s constitution.
‘’All these tantamount to anti-party activities to undermine the state executive authority of the party,” he said.
Igwilo said the two members of the National Executive Committee from Anambra, Obiekwe and Anyichie were suspended for their role in attempts to undermine the leadership of UPP in Anambra.
Chidoka told NAN that he was unaware of his suspension as he had not been informed by the party.
The former minister said he had not contravened any provision of the party constitution.
He said he was busy meeting stakeholders and consulting ahead of the party’s primary election and how to build a stronger and more resilient UPP in Anambra and Nigeria.
On his part, Ofodile described his suspension as surprising. He said he would react after he was served by the party.
Also reacting, the National Chairman of UPP, Chief Chekwas Okorie said the development was a handiwork of enemies of party.
Okorie dismissed the development and described it as `inconsequential’ as officials and delegates for the party primaries were ready for the exercise slated to hold on Saturday.
In another development Chief Ifeanyichukwu Oknokwo a governorship aspirant in the party has served a 7 day ultimatum to Chekwas Okorie to resign as party chairman of UPP or fave humiliation and jail term.
Okonkwo alleged that all the money raised by Anambra State party members were fraudulently diverted in Chekwas private account.
He stated that millions of party funds were also diverted in his personal account including the N5.5 Million paid by governorship aspirants were discovered in Chewas account.
Another N40 Million bribe from Osita Chidoka and Over N100 Million believe to have come from his deal with PDP big Politicians were allegedly discovered in his account.
“This deal was for one purpose, to impose Osita Chidoka the 1 Nigeria ideologist on the party against the popular Biafran Ideologist (Chudi Offodile) whom all party members are supporting”, it was alleged.
Chief Ifeanyichukwu Okonkwo
Reacting to the developments the National Working Committee (NWC) of the United Progressives Party [UPP] suspended the acting State Working Committee (SWC) of the party in Anambra State and suspended Ifeanyi Okonkwo.
The party in a press release issued by the National Secretary of the party, Alhaji Sadeeq Masalla said the NWC in an extraordinary meeting today Tuesday 15th August 2017, at the National Secretariat, Abuja, considered the report of an unfortunate rebellion by some misguided members of the acting State Working Committee (SWC) of our Party in Anambra State which was carried out through a press conference addressed by Dr. Sylvester Igwilo, the acting State Chairman of the Party.
The National Working Committee acting on behalf of the National Executive Committee (NEC) “hereby dissolve with immediate effect the acting State Working Committee of the Party led by Dr. Sylvester Igwilo”, the statement said.
“Mr. Ifeanyi Okonkwo, a member of the Party from Nnobi Ward 1, Idemili South Local Government Area, Anambra State, is also suspended from being a member of the Party for his culpability in the unfolding acts of rebellion against the leadership of the Party.
“The Party shall put the necessary machinery in motion to get to the root of the rebellion with a view to identifying the actual culprits and their sponsors.”