Barely a week after the Taraba State chapter of the All Progressive Congress elected two separate executives at different locations in Jalingo, both factions claim that their congresses were authentic and duly recognised by the national secretariat of the party.
Mr. Aaron Arthimas, the Publicity Secretary of the Unity Group faction that elected Ibrahim el-Suldi as state chairman, told our correspondent that three members of the Taraba State Congress Committee that supervised their congress endorsed their signatures on the certificate of return issued to the newly elected officials.
The group noted that they were “on the side of the truth” and that they would not petition the national secretary of the party because what they did was right.
“The report of the congress has been submitted to the national secretariat and we are waiting for clearance from them to inaugurate our officials.
“We followed the party’s guidelines and conducted our congress at a neutral ground in a hotel.
“We held our congress and four chairmanship aspirants stepped down for Ibrahim el-Suldi who then emerged by consensus and was witnessed by three of the congress committee members,” he said.
He said that the 12 governorship aspirants of the party, with their supporters, were solidly behind their elected officials and urged members of the party in the state to remain calm, saying that the national secretariat of the party would soon issue a clearance for the inauguration of their executive.
The Minister, Senator Aisha Alhassan could not be reached or any of her group members, as several calls and text messages to their phones did not elicit response.
Alhassan had, on Sunday, during the declaration of her factional executive, maintained that those elected from her faction were the authentic executives of the party in the state.
“The national secretariat of the party has warned that they will not recognise any factional congress; so, those parading themselves as factional Unity Group have themselves to blame,” she said.
Chairman of the Taraba State APC Congress Committee, Retd. Maj. Gen. Danjuma Dambazau had, on Sunday, declared the officials elected at a parallel congress conducted by Minister of Women Affairs, Aisha Alhassan, as the authentic; as against the one conducted by the APC Unity Group in the state.
Dambazau, flanked by the secretary of the committee, told journalists that he and the secretary were the only people officially recognised to make declaration, adding that he was not aware of the conduct of any factional congress in the state.