APC’s Imported Crowd Stranded In Uyo
As the All Progressives Congress (APC) Chairmanship and councillorship candidates for the forthcoming December 2nd local government elections continue to bask in the euphoria of the seemingly large turnout at the flag-off campaign over the weekend, it has been discovered that a large percentage of the crowd were imported from the neighbouring states.
Investigations revealed that most of those who made the crowd were from Rivers State and coordinated by one of the aides of former Governor Rotimi Amechi, now the Minister of Transport.
A reliable source confided on us amidst laughter that they were coming to Uyo for APC campaign.
Upon enquiry, he said they were paid to join the crowd in Uyo as members of the party were not many in Akwa Ibom.
Further investigations revealed that the negotiation started when the Managing Director of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), Mr. Nsima Ekere, visited his benefactor, Mr. Rotimi Amechi at Abuja to discuss the fate of the party ahead of the local government election in Akwa Ibom State.
Ekere who also sought solution to the increasing defection from the party to the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), appealed to the Minister for Transport to assist the Akwa Ibom APC to have a make-up crowd in order to safe him and his allies from possible embarrassment.
This arrangement, it was gathered, was extended to Cross River State through the Chairman of the NDDC, Senator Ndoma Egba, who mandated his aide to act on the demand.
The Vice President, Prof Yemi Osinbajo, who was to flag off the campaign, it was gathered, cancelled his trip to Akwa Ibom when his intelligence report informed him of the fictitious crowd arrangement.
Similarly, the National leader of the party, Senator Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, who had prepared to come with the Vice President, cancelled his trip at the eleventh hour when he was informed that the Vice President had taken a decision not to attend the event.
It would be recalled that the APC had earlier scheduled its flag-off campaign for Tuesday 14th November, but postponed it to Saturday 20th as the earlier date coincided with President Buhari’s visit to Anambra State.
This arrangement, it was further gathered, was to ensure that either the President or his Vice must be present at the flag-off but was frustrated by the turn out of event.
It was also gathered that after the campaign, most of those who came from neighbouring states were looking for friends to accommodate them for the night as it was late to travel back while some could not find their way to the AKTC Park.
In a related development, the crisis which has bedevilled the party following the emergence of the Nsima Ekere-led faction has deepened as the real APC led by Senator John Akpan Udoedehe has perfected plans to hold its campaign next week.
Nsima Ekere’s faction is losing its grip at the national level as some of the political gladiators of APC at the national level have started asking question on the fate of the party without the likes of John Udoedehe, Group Capt Sampson Ewang, Rt Hon Emmanuel Ekpenyong, Dr Udoma Bob Ekarika, Bar Joe Ukpong.