The All Progressives Congress in Benue State omitted the names of three gubernatorial candidates while forming its governorship campaign committee.
Not on the list are former head of the Peoples Democratic Party, Barnabas Gemade, Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Mike Aondakaa, SAN, and Professor Terhemba Shija.
The three individuals who participated in the May party primary but lost to the suspended Catholic priest Rev Fr Hyacinth Alia are now contesting the procedure in court.
James Ornguga, the party’s State Organizing Secretary, told media over the phone that the party had chosen to withdraw their names from the campaign council owing to the court issue.
“Our first plan was to include all of those who opposed Fr. Alia in the campaign council, but on second thought, we decided to just include the three who had sued Alia, indicating that they are not yet in accord with his emergence.
“Therefore, placing them on Alia’s campaign council is insufficient since they may decide to disassociate themselves from the list, making a mockery of our efforts.
“They continue to be respected party elders. We still regard them to be members, but because they are currently fighting the result of the primaries that produced the candidate whose campaign council is being constituted, we believe they should not be included. Thus, this was the consideration,” stated Orgunga.
Other gubernatorial candidates who participated in the primaries and do not have problems have been brought into the campaign organisation, according to the party’s organising secretary.
He continued, “People who do not have concerns, such as Stephen Lawani and others, are often part of the team, but we picked out these three because they had outstanding legal proceedings against the candidate.
“It indicates that they have not accepted the fact that the guy won.” Therefore, it would be an insult to have them on the squad,” he said.
Ornguga said that the party will inaugurate the campaign council on October 14, 2022, and then immediately launch the campaign.
Senator George Akume serves as the head of the campaign council, while Chief Audu Ogbe and Paul Biam serve as the secretary and deputy secretary, respectively.
Also included as members are Rev. Fredrick Ikyaan as Director General, Jacob Obande as deputy director general, and Austin Agada as state party chairman, Sen. Tilley Gyado, Former deputy governor Stephen Lawani, Patricia Kupchi, and Kate Nomhwange.