A member of the National Working Committee (NWC) of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), Hilliard Eta has taken his party leadership to the cleaners, saying crucial decisions are now taken in favour of moneybags.
Earlier in his reaction, the APC National Organizing Secretary, Sen. Osita Izunaso dismissed Eta’s position, saying: “As far as the party is concerned, that exercise is already concluded.
Eta who is the National Vice Chairman, South-South of the party made the declaration at the party’s national secretariat Friday in Abuja while addressing journalists on the festering crisis in the Cross River state chapter of the the APC.
“In my place, we have a saying that when a lizard falls into a ditch, it becomes a play thing for the fowl. The party has now become a play thing between the National Chairman and the National Organizing Secretary. Anybody who has money can procure anything”, he said.
When asked whether he has reported his grievances to the National Chairman, Chief Oyegun, the APC vice chairman said: “For me, I do things according to the law the NWC has not been invited on any matter concerning Cross Rivers state. Until such is done I will present to my colleagues a detailed narrative of how this constitution has been violated so that a particular narrative will be instituted or established in Cross Rivers state. Until such a meeting is held I can do nothing.
“But if you must know, a lot of the National Working Committee members have been complaining about the extra constitutional processes that goes on at the National Secretariat, especially under the watch of Osita Izunazo, the Organising Secretary.”
He also accused the party’s Deputy National Chairman, South, Engr. Segun Oni of complicity in the matter.
His accusations came days after a national leader of the party, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu wrote the National Chairman, Chief John Odigie-Oyegun, accusing him of acting based on financial inducements.
According to him, what was expected of the party leadership was to have given all the necessary support to the reconciliation committee headed by a former Lagos state Governor, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu.
Explaining the issues in the Cross River chapter, he said; “There was a consensus in the Cross River state chapter that we should have a congress to bring in a substantive chairman since the erstwhile chairman had been appointed as the Minister of Niger Delta Affairs. That was the agreement by the people of Cross River state and based on that, I wrote on behalf of the zone to the National Working Committee NWC to give the zone the authority to conduct a congress to that effect and the NWC said I should liaise with the office of the National Organizing Secretary (headed by Sen. Osita Izunaso) for that purpose.
“We had set November 28 last year for that congress to happen but unfortunately, a member of the party went to court and got an injunction and served the processes on the party. So, based on the advice of the National Legal Adviser, we were asked to stay action as a party.
“So in the next NWC meeting when the matter of Cross Rivers came up I was asked to make comments on what happened and why we couldn’t conduct congresses and the resolution of the NWC was that because we were very close to conducting congresses nationwide, that all congresses to fill vacant positions in the country, not just in the state should be set aside and that all the vacant positions would be filled at the same time during the congresses that would be held simultaneously to bring in new executives. That was the resolution of the NWC.
According to him, there was a violation of the relevant laws regarding having to give a 14 days notice to the Independent National Electoral Commission INEC before any congress is conducted.
Eta added that only 109 statutory delegates participated in the purported February 24 congress organized by the party while INEC also refused to attend. According to him, six delegates from each of the 196 wards in the state were also not part of the said congress.