From CHUKS ONUOHA, Umuahia
Opposition parties in Abia State have come together under a yet-to-be-identified umbrella, to ease Abia State Governor, Chief Theodore Orji out of power. The parties are All Nigeria Peoples Party (ANPP), Congress for Progressive Change (CPC), All Progressive Grand Alliance (APGA), Democratic Peoples Party (DPP) and Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN).
Leadership of the parties met yesterday in Umuahia, the state capital and agreed to form a formidable body that would ensure that PDP was ousted from the state whether the merger agreement at the national worked or not. They came out with a seven-point communiqué which lamented that there was bad governance in Abia and Nigeria, that they would remove bad governance, that all Abia opposition parties were now one, that process of merging would be peaceful and that meeting of the group would be going on at all levels, etc.
The leadership of each of the parties spoke strongly in support of the project as they all agreed that the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) had failed the state. Others who spoke during the meeting were floor members, representatives of the women group and representatives of the youths.
They agreed that the only state in the South East that needed change as a matter of urgency was Abia State and implored the people to be steadfast in what they were doing. ANPP was represented by its state Chairman, Chief Cassidy Agbai, CPC by Mr. Kalu Kalu, DPP by Chief Ikonne Okechukwu, APGA by Chief Ozo Obata while ACN was represented by Chief Egwuatu Egbulefu. Speaking earlier, Egbulefu said that Igbos had come together in a meeting to agree that wherever there was bad governance in the South East, they would ensure the establishment of good governance by sacking the leadership in that state.
“The decision is that whether parties merge or not, Igbos have merged to bring about good governance for our people. We are here because we want our first meeting to be on neutral ground,” Egulefu said. They implored everyone to go to their wards and talk to people, stating that they should welcome everybody, including those coming to spy on them because when they come, they would realise that the coming together of the Igbos was for the good of all.
Speaking on the process of merger going on at the national level, Egbulefu said every party involved in the arrangement would hold a convention, return their certificate of registration and fuse into one another to become one entity. According to him, if this worked out, the new party would accommodate all principal people in the various parties that had come together.