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‘I won’t be part of this charade’ — Abaribe withdraws from Abia PDP guber primary

Enyinnaya Abaribe, a governorship hopeful on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Abia, has withdrawn from the party’s primary election.

The senate minority leader announced his withdrawal from the governorship race in a statement issued on Wednesday.

The PDP governorship primaries are scheduled to take place today across the country.

Last week, some governorship hopefuls and chieftains of the PDP in Abia had asked the national working committee (NWC) to take immediate action to prevent an “impending implosion” of the party in the state.

The hopefuls had said no ward congresses were conducted in the state, hence the delegates’ list is invalid.

Abaribe attributed his withdrawal from the race to “imaginary” delegates, whom he said will vote in the primary.

“The last couple of weeks has been tortuous as we battled hard to navigate our party, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) away from a self-destructive path. The essence was to create an unfettered democratic space and a level playing field for all aspirants vying for all elective offices in the state, to participate equally in the primary elections,” the statement reads.

“That was not the case and of course what we are witnessing is a shambolic process driven by a procured court injunction. To make matters worse, the use of only imaginary 3-man Adhoc delegates to the exclusion of the party’s statutory delegates in the primary elections to elect our candidates even when INEC the nation’s electoral umpire, has unequivocally stated that no congress held in Abia State for that purpose, has no doubt put the party and her candidates in a quagmire.

“The implication for our party is grave and as such has put all ongoing primary exercises on quicksand. I am known for standing firm in defence of my convictions for the right of all people to a free and fair democratic process. That was why my campaign set sail on a democratic journey that took us to all the nooks and crannies of our dear state. We covered all the local governments and we could see the enthusiasm on the faces of our people who are desirous of change to a progressive government with a human face.

“We committed human and material resources, preaching the “Rise Up Abia” message for the total emancipation of our State from the drudgery of imposition and godfatherism, which has seen the state at the lowest wrung of infrastructural, human and material development index among the states of the federation.

“Our people were and are indeed fired up for a new lease of life that will be brought about by a people’s government. There was no doubt that Abians are tired of being subjected to being the butt of jokes and ridicule from their peers, particularly those from the contiguous states that were hitherto far behind Abia State in the development index at the time past. That was the narrative we sought to change when the campaign took off.

“Unfortunately, the ugly developments ignited by a rapacious ambition to maintain the wicked governance status quo of imposition and godfatherism have aborted this quest in PDP.

“Accordingly, I Senator Enyinnaya Harcourt Abaribe will not be part of this charade. I am therefore withdrawing from the exercise, which means that I will not be part of the PDP governorship primary election that holds in Abia State on Wednesday 25th of May, 2022 as doing so would have amounted to an endorsement of illegality that is already being challenged in the courts.”

Abaribe asked members of the party and his supporters to “remain calm, keep the faith and wait for the new direction, which will be announced very soon”.


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