Friday, December 21, 2018 6:31 pm
The Inter Party Advisory Council (IPAC) in Ebonyi has been hit by major leadership crisis over the sharing of Christmas gift from the state government.
News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) learnt the leadership crisis is between Mrs Jenifer Adibe, the IPAC Chairman and Mr Splendor Eze, the governorship candidate of the Alliiance Congress of Democrats (ACD).
The crisis, it was authoritatively gathered began when Adibe was elected few months ago against the expectation of some members of the group.
A very senior member of the group revealed on the condition of anonymity that some members loyal to Eze opposed the emergence of Adibe as Chairman.
“Since the emergence of Adibe, a group of members loyal to Eze has sworn to unseat the chairman and therefore will not see anything good in her leadership of IPAC in Ebonyi.
“The crisis is affecting the progress of IPAC in Ebonyi and has disunited as a group”, the source said.
Matters degenerated on Wednesday when the Eze-led group allegedly attempted to impeach Adibe , an attempt that was resisted by the group loyal to her.
Meanwhile, In an interview with newsmen in Abakaliki on Friday, Eze said that the latest crisis began when the chairman allegedly excluded him and his supporters from the sharing of the five million naira and 500 bags of rice given to the group by the state government.
Eze said former governors of the state had shown similar gestures to IPAC during previous Christmas periods.
“The IPAC was given five million naira and 500 bags of rice as Christmas largess but instead distributing the gifts equitably, the chairman decided to exclude some of us who are governorship candidates.
“We demanded to know why we should be excluded from benefiting from the Christmas gifts, Adibe told us that it was a directive from the governor.
“She also unilaterally cancelled a meeting of IPAC she called when members had gathered for the meeting without any justifiable reason.
“The meeting slated to hold Wednesday, Dec 19 would have afforded the council opportunity to address some problems affecting the IPAC in the state.
“The leadership under Adibe has failed in moving the IPAC and has caused members to be divided along the lines of the two major political parties in the state”, Eze said.
According to him, the insistence of his group that the meeting would hold as scheduled led to the invitation of persons suspected to be political thugs by the chairman.
He further alleged that these hired people came to the IPAC secretariat, manhandled him before whisking him away.
Eze alleged that the suspected thugs took him to a secluded place behind Ebonyi Hotel along Sam Egwu road, Abakaliki where they thoroughly beat him before releasing him and warned him not to step foot into the IPAC secretariat again.
“I am a governorship candidate of my political party and because of this the chairman has connived with some persons and sent political thugs to come and kill me.
“I want the whole world to hear this and know what is happening in Ebonyi IPAC.
“Some persons have come to me and warned me to stay out of the governorship race, but I told them know that my party gave the ticket to fly its flag in Ebonyi.
“My life is in danger and I want the whole world to know that some persons are after my life because of my ambition”.
In her reaction however, Adibe described the allegations as spurious and lacking merit.
She said that the meeting scheduled for Wednesday could not hold due to an urgent call she received from Government House, Abakaliki, over the programme that IPAC was scheduled to hold on Thursday.
She said that contrary to the allegation that IPAC received five million naira, it was given three million naira and 500 bags which it shared equitably among members.
The IPAC boss added that Eze masterminded his ordeal in order to whip up sentiment and attract public sympathy for his governorship ambition.
“The whole allegations levelled against me by Eze are all lies and blackmail; perhaps that is his own campaign strategy but he has failed, ” Adibe said.