As a result of alleged anti-party activities and financial misconduct, the All Progressives Congress’ Rivers State Executive Committee suspended the party’s chairman, Chief Emeka Beke, and its legal adviser, Iheanyichukwu Azubuike, on Wednesday.
Additionally, the SEC distanced itself from remarks purportedly made by the former minister of transportation Rotimi Amaechi, according to which Bola Tinubu nominated Prof. Mahmood Yakubu as the chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission on his own.
Special leader of the party’s executive committee in the state, Chike Eyinda, who led other members to a media briefing in Port Harcourt, disclosed this on Wednesday.
Eyinda noted that the activities of Beke and Amaechi had adversely affected the party in the last couple of years, culminating in its dismal outing in the just concluded general election.
He said, “We, the members of the State Executive Committee, therefore resolve as follows: That Chef Emeka Beke, the chairman of the APC in Rivers State, is hereby suspended indefinitely for anti-party activities, gross misconduct and financial mismanagement pending the outcome of an independent committee of inquiry as may be set up by the party.
“That until the outcome of the committee of inquiry, Mr. Omiete Eferebo, the deputy chairman assumes the office of the acting chairman with immediate effect.
“That Mr. Iheanyichukwu Azubuike, the Legal Adviser of the party also stands suspended for anti-party activities and financial mismanagement pending the outcome of the committee of inquiry.”
He further said the trio of Amaechi, Beke, and Azubuike had since 2021 held the Rivers APC on her kneels.
Enyinda stated, “These leaders have been responsible for the mass exodus of members of the party as well as the failures experienced by the party in the just concluded general elections in the state.
“To demonstrate this, Rt. Hon. Amaechi, who contested and lost the Presidential primary to the President elect, Bola Tinubu, in active connivance with the state chairman and the legal adviser, a week to the presidential election, called the leadership of the party to a meeting and directed all the APC members in the state to work for the PDP in the general election.
He further alleged that Amaechi’s earlier instruction backfired on the APC during the March 18 governorship election, as no contrary instruction was given to the party’s supporters in the various local government areas to counter the earlier instruction.
“And this accounted for the party’s loss on the 18th March governorship and state assembly elections.
“Instead of being remorseful for what he did to the party, Rt. Hon. Chibuike Amaechi decided to hinge the blame on our dear President elect, Bola Tinubu, claiming that he singlehandedly appointed the INEC, Chairman Yakubu Mahmood.
“As party faithful, we consider this statement by the Rt. Hon. Chibuike Amaechi as an affront to our President-elect and the highest level of anti-party activity,” Enyinda said.
Continuing, he said, “Therefore, we stand before the world today to totally condemn and dissociate ourselves from those statements credited to Rt. Hon. Chibuike Amaechi and the party chairman, Beke.
“We state that whatever he said represents his personal opinion and not our collective stand, little wonder Emeka Beke up till date has refused to refute same.
While lamenting the party’s woes in the state since 2015, he said “Today, the Rivers chapter of the APC cannot claim to be in alignment with the party at the centre because of one man who has left so many party faithful dead during elections and their families wallowing in abject poverty.
“Also, since the present chairman (Chief Beke) took over the mantle of leadership of APC in Rivers state.
“All funds released for the 2023 elections were disbursed by the Chairman and his cronies without the consent and approval of any member of the executive working committee as prescribed by the party’s constitution.
“We urgently call on the National Chairman, Senator Abdullahi Adamu to set up an independent panel of inquiry to look into the activities of the above mentioned leaders with a view to finding a lasting solution to the problems of the party in the state,” he said.