Some members of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Cross Rivers State under the name, Integrity Group has asked the National Working Committee (NWC) of the party not to recognize Hon. John Etim as the authentic chairman of the party in the state.
The Integrity Group made the call at the weekend at a press conference in Abuja ahead of the party’s National Executive Committee (NEC) meeting planned for today (Tuesday). The members said they have to raise the alarm to avoid what they described as “assault on the internal democracy of APC in the Cross River state chapter of the ruling party.
The Group said they are specifically raise their voice this time based on a letter circulating in the social media purporting that Hon. Etim has been invited to attend the 5th Session of the NWC meeting in Abuja on this Tuesday, 27 March and purporting that he has been recognized as the substantive State Chairman of APC in Cross River.
“We do not believe that such a letter was actually signed and issued by the National Secretary of APC after receiving several petitions and court processes/documents showing that…congress was substantially invalid event, in that, it was constituted contrary to the relevant provisions of the APC constitution,” Chairman of the group, Mr. Maxwell Etta.
Their grouse is that the election that produced Hon. Etim as the acclaimed chairman of the state chapter of the party is devoid of due process and laid down rules of the APC and the Nigerian constitution on election of party executives.
Etta said the election that purportedly produced Etim was not monitored by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) because Etim and his co-travelers only gave 14 days notice to INEC instead of the 21 days allowed by Section 85, Sub(1)(3) and (4) of the Electoral Act 2010 (as amended) which provides for 21days notice before Congress is held.
Ideally, five people from each of the 195 wards of the state are required under law to hold elective Congress. “Curiously, Etim did not have the desired number to hold the Congress,” Mr. Etta said while addressing journalists in Abuja.
While they said they have not seen the original copy of the letter, they group said “we do not believe that a Democratic Party such as APC can ignore those issues of constitutional violation and go ahead to uphold the outcome of a fake the questionable state congress held on the 24th of February, 2018, in Calabar.”