- A support group within the All Progressives Congress (APC) has rejected the emergence of Reverend Father Hyacinth Alia as the governorship candidate in Benue
- The group said that the APC is yet to get a candidate that would represent the party in the forthcoming election
- According to the group, the party leadership has only succeeded in ceding the Benue governorship seat to the PDP by allowing the emergence of Alia as its candidate
The All Progressives Congress (APC) Solidarity Group, Benue state chapter on Tuesday, June 14, warned that the governorship candidate in the state, Reverend Father Hyacinth Alia, is not a member of the state chapter of the party
Rev Fr Alia's emergence at the governorship primary held in the state has since become a subject of controversy among party members in Benue.
APCSG's state coordinator, Guana Joseph, said that documents emanating from the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) revealed that the Vandiekya local government chapter of APC where Alia hails from has no record of his membership with the party.
In a statement seen by Legit.ng, Joseph on behalf of the group accused Senator George Akume of being blinded by desperation to the extent of imposing a non-party member on the APC as its governorship candidate.
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Noting that the group is in possession of the certified true copies of INEC's response to an application by a law firm, Broad Spectrum & Partners, Joseph alleged that the leadership of the APC through its action has handed the Benue state's governorship seat to the Peoples Democratic Party.
According to the group, in an application signed by Barr. Ernest Olenyi, INEC revealed that out of the 23 local government areas of Benue State, the APC submitted the list of members in 21 local government areas.
The statement read in parts:
“The two local government areas without its list of members are Vandiekya and Katsina-Ala local governments.
“The implication is that the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) has no validly nominated governorship candidate by the party as the local government area where Rev. Father Hyacinth Alia is from was not submitted in compliance with Section 77(2) & (3) of the Electoral Act 2022 (as amended)."
According to the statement, with the Vandiekya register not submitted to INEC and the deadline already elapsed, it shows that the party may not have candidates from both Katsina-Ala and Vandiekya Local Areas of Benue.
The group said that Alia is from Vandiekya local government area where he claimed to have registered as a member of the APC.
"Alia falls short of the three months membership waver, hence stands disqualified on the ground that there is no member of the party from Vandiekya Local government at all.
"The leadership of the party at the state level is aware of this development but the leader is mute about it."
The group further called on the national leadership of APC, Senator Abdullahi Adamu to intervene in the matter before it is too late.
2023: Catholic suspends priest who declared interest for Benue guber polls
The Catholic Diocese of Gboko in Benue state had announced the suspension of Reverend Father Hyacinth Alia.
Alia's suspension is coming after he had declared his intention to run for the governorship seat of Benue state.
According to his spokesperson, the suspended priest has acknowledged the suspension as he will be running for office under the flagship of APC.
Crises rock Rivers, Oyo, Benue APC over governorship primaries
According to some aspirants and faction leaders, alleged that elections were not held rather delegates were hand-picked by rival groups
The states facing political crises ahead of the governorship primaries include Rivers, Benue, Oyo and Sokoto.