How APC defied downpour to elect Odigie-Oyegun, 47 others
The All Progressives Congress, (APC) yesterday defied over three hours downpour to elect its 48-man substantive first National Executive Committee members.
The leaders of the party who thronged the Eagle Square sat throughout the night despite the cold weather to ensure the emergence of the new executive members.
The rains rippled through the unprotected stands at the square leaving over 6,000 delegates wet to their pants.
But despite being soaked, the APC leaders and members were goaded by their determination to effect change and tolerate the rage of the rains.
The downpour, which was accompanied by storm, blew off make-shift tents and attempted to sweep away the ballot boxes but the “Can Do” spirit of the APC leaders and members prevailed.
The convention which was officially declared open at about 8.15pm on Friday ended at about 11.00 am on Saturday morning.
Despite the three hour disruption by the rain, the leaders completed the most important assignments of the convention which were voting, the collation of the ballot papers and the announcement of winners.
Former Governor of Edo State, Chief John Odigie-Oyegun was declared elected as the National Chairman of the APC at about 9.40am by the Chairman of the Electoral Committee of the convention, Alhaji Abubakar Kawu Baraje.
He added that some of the new executive members emerged by affirmation in line with the constitution of the APC while nine of the positions were keenly contested for.
Baraje said: “The following positions were contested for by one competitor only and therefore in accordance with the relevant provisions of the constitution of our party which gives us the opportunity that we could go ahead and make voice vote and affirmations, I am going to announce such positions that in spite of their being single contestants, we still voted for them and their ballot boxes can be seen over there.
“After, I am going to read those positions, nine of them, that were also keenly vied for by more than one contestant and the persons that emerged in that category too as the winners.”
According to Baraje, the position of the National Chairman of the party was won by the former Governor of Edo State, Chief John Odigie-Oyegun.
The post of the Deputy National Chairman South went to Segun Oni while Senator Lawal Shuaibu emerged the Deputy Chairman North.
Mallam Ibrahim Bala Gubi was declared the National Secretary with Orji Ugofa as Deputy National Secretary while the post of the Vice Chairman South West went to Akinyelure Pius Oloye.
The Vice Chairman North West is Inuwa Abdulkadir while the Vice Chairman North Central is Zakari Abdullahi Ede.
Others are Deputy National Organizing Secretary Alhaji Suleiman Manko Hunkuyi, National Treasurer Bala Mohammed Gwagwaruwa, National Financial Secretary Alhaji Tajudeen Olawutan Bello, National Welfare Secretary, Dika Umaru Lada, Deputy National Welfare Secretary, Mr. Jock Alamba, National Publicity Secretary Alhaji Lai Mohammmed, Deputy National Publicity Secretary, Comrade Timi Frank, National Legal Adviser, Mr. Muiz Banire, National Woman Leader, Hajia Ramatu Tijani, Deputy National Auditor, Oputa Ado, National Youth Leader, Ibrahim Dasuki Jalo, and the Zonal Youth Leader North Central, Mr. Tempe Adigwe.
Other national officers elected at the convention are Zonal Youth Leader North West, Shehu Marshal, Zonal Youth Leader North East, Michael Tanko, Zonal Youth Leader South West, Adedotun Oluwasegun, Zonal Woman Leader South East, Mrs. Helen Ojukwu, Zonal Woman Leader North East, Fatima Danjuma, Zonal Woman Leader North West, Aisha Kaita, Zonal Woman Leader South-South, Rachael Bassey Akpabio, Zonal Woman Leader North Central, Hajia Hassana and Zonal Woman Leader South West, Kemi Nelson.
Also elected were Ex-Officio Members South East, Nduka Anyanwu, North East, Mallam Mamman Isah Azare, North West, South West, Mallam Razak Ayobamiseresile, Alhaji Nasiru Haladu Danu, and National Auditor, Chief George Moghalu.
Baraje further announced the following as the winners of the keenly contested elections where the party had more than one competitor:
According to him, Mr. Emmanuel Eneukwu scored 683 votes to defeat Uchena Kiyari Ufiaro who scored 14 votes for the position of the National Vice Chairman South East.
The post of the National Vice Chairman South- South, was won by Illiad Atagbo with 328 votes as against Obono Obla who scored 54 votes.
Bibi Lawal emerged the National Vice Chairman, North-East with 772 votes against Dr. Umaru Duhu who polled 626 votes.
The post of the National Organizing Secretary was won by Senator Osita Izunaso with 952 votes against Mrs. Adaugo Obi who polled 15 votes.
The Deputy National Treasurer went to Abubakar Lado Suleija with 722 votes against Alhaji Yusuf Sheriff who scored 210 votes while the post of the Deputy National Financial Secretary was won by Sunday Chukwu with 893 votes against Chijioke Agwugwe with 15 votes.
Helen Chika Adike became the Deputy National Woman Leader with 537 votes against Tina Akunobi who scored 10 votes.
The post of the Zonal Youth Leader South East was won by Paul Chukwuma with 268 votes against Mr. Igwe Udimata who scored 156 votes, while Ex-Officio Member North Central, went to Alhaji Jemilu Baba with 121 votes ahead of Nelson Alapa who polled 157 votes.
There was however drama few minutes into the announcement of the results.
Baraje, who had to pause as a result of power failure at the Eagle Square , said: “For the past almost seven years, the ruling party has been promising light and have been spending billions and billions of Naira, yet we are in darkness.
“The reason why some of us felt we can no longer live with dishonesty. They are not happy. We are waking them up with this very good news of how it is done.”