Ezekwesili accused of lobbying to be minister
The Allied Congress Party of Nigeria (ACPN) has disowned its erstwhile presidential candidate and former Minister of Education Dr Oby Ezekwesili, saying she merely wanted to use the party platform and ticket to lobby her way into a ministerial appointment in the next political dispensation.
The party also announced it was endorsing President Muhammadu Buhari as its candidate for the February 16 presidential election following the withdrawal of Ezekwesili from the race without consultation with leadership of the party.
Reacting to the decision of the former Minister to drop out of the presidential race, National Chairman of the party who also doubled as its vice presidential candidate, Alhaji Ganiyu Galadima asked Ezekwesili to render account of all monies she received while flying the party flag.
The party threatened to sue her if she refuses to return all the party material and donations she received within the little time she was in the party.
The former Minister announced her decision to withdraw from the presidential race early hours of Thursday to devote her time in building a coalition that would the defeat the All Progressives Congress (APC) and Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
Galadima said the former Minister did not officially inform the party of her decision before making it public.
He added information available to the party indicate the former minister did not officially inform officials of her decision.
While announcing the decision of the party to support President Muhammadu Buhari’s re-election bid, Galadima accused Ezekwesili of not showing any seriousness in her campaign.
He said: “The reason for calling this press conference is to let the world know about the presidential aspiration of Dr. Oby Ezekwesili, which in actual fact is not the truth.
“I have been put into confidence by one of her aides named Iyinoluwa Aboyeji that she only wanted to use the platform of the ACPN to negotiate to be Nigeria’s finance minister.
“This is why she does not deem fit to inform the party whose mandate she is holding. If you observe, Dr. Oby Ezekwesili, is the only presidential candidate who was so militant in her campaign without any tangible thing on ground to indicate any seriousness in the prosecution of her campaign.
“No campaign secretariat, billboard or great commitment on ground to indicate any seriousness.
“It is on this ground that the ACPN is withdrawing support for her presidential aspiration and endorsing the second term bid of President Muhammadu Buhari to take Nigeria to the next level. We may take her to court during her brief sojourn.
She must return whatever money she collected from people on behalf of the party because whatever is given to her belongs to the party.
“Don’t forget that at the end of the day, as a party, we must render account to INEC, this is mandatory and it is in the electoral Act.
“We want to use this medium to tell her that we are not that was given to her not unaware of the various accounts that herself and her personal aide has opened to generate funds.
“We are aware that monies were coming to get in droves but we didn’t know the successes of this funds, she should please come and render account to us.
“She should please come and render account to us and to come and give back to the party all that belongs to it because, without the party, nobody will give her any fund or donate anything to her,”