By Princely Onyenwe, Abuja
Following the misinterpretation of recent primary election results across the country, groups of experts and analysts have thrown their respective weights to condemn the process.
In the same vein, the same analysts reproach the constitution of the Federal Republic for not precisely stating and absorbing the facts in order to correct certain anomalies hindering its application.
In this contest, SASG media aide Ejike Chukwuma writes to warn members of the Congressional APC party of all progressives to remain calm until the winners of the primaries are over.
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The events leading up to the party primaries in the state and the ripple effects that followed each stage created a need to declare the above.
There have been vituperations and appeals of resentment from holdouts who feel wronged in some way hoping to reverse their misfortune by forcing the hand of the party.
While it is completely understandable and the legitimate right of party aspirants and supporters to air their grievances in such situations, it is completely unacceptable in any respect to publicly disparage your party or attempt to disparage its direction, just because you couldn’t have your way.
For the sake of clarity, we should consider some pertinent questions left unanswered by aggrieved persons in their misguided quest for justice.
The consensus, which had been adopted by the party in some primaries in our state, was neither a novel choice nor an anomaly introduced by Imo State.
It was a historic process, backed by the party constitution and the new electoral law as amended.
Although he indicates that the aspirants, in such a case, concede to the emergence of a single candidate, he has not highlighted the specific intricacies that will entail such a move.
This choice of selection, although not always acceptable to all, is used by all political parties when individual interests are in direct conflict with the interest of the party.
In such a situation, the final decision of the party becomes supreme, to protect the whole party and not just the aspirants.
It should be noted at this point that the supreme leadership of the party in the state, on more than one occasion, has reminded all aspirants and their supporters to seriously consider factors limiting their aspirations such as the zoning formula, ongoing litigation and criminal records before the primaries.
Indirect primaries were also used. The process involving the use of delegates also deals with party hierarchy, as delegates are drawn from ardent party members who, in turn, are loyal to their party leaders as they should be.
It is disheartening that those who shouted the loudest could not even convince their immediate constituents or delegates and therefore knew they would lose in an open contest devoid of inducement.
Their outcry can only be construed as a diversion from their last-minute desperation and inability to land unearned tenure from seasoned and savvy delegates.
Fortunately, the faithful delegates performed their duty to the party in an honorable way, without fear or favor.
Sadly too, some of these vociferous individuals crying foul now, did not consider the limiting issues raised earlier and stubbornly insisted on continuing with their pontifical approach.
Their supporters who are now on many platforms threatening fire and brimstone by claiming that due process has not been followed are hypocritical to say the least, knowing full well that in party primaries it is the hierarchy within the political structure, after much consultation and consideration, which will play a central role in the final choice of candidates unlike in legislative elections.
Where was their interpretation of due process, as they encouraged their aspirants to pressure our esteemed stakeholders and delegates with many freebies in a failed attempt, to manipulate their choice of candidates?
Why didn’t they insist on due process without any kind of incentive then? I have yet to see an aspirant who has not gone through such an “undue process”, as it is an acceptable standard, although not constitutional. All of their supporters have benefited from their largesse without complaining.
For most people, the electoral prospects of candidates have become tied to their financial incentive ability, not their political background in the party or a favorable zoning formula.
To be frankly realistic, how many of these outrageous people have been present in our political activities within wards and LGAs, prior to this election season?
How many had even called their ward or LGA presidents for updates or support, before February 2022?
Our Distinguished Governor Senator Hope Uzodimma, State Chairman, Sir Macdonald Ebere, PhD. and party leaders are not fooled by the sudden, overt display of party loyalty by a privileged few.
Our party leaders are die-hard loyalists, who have earned their stripes by consistently identifying with party activities driven by unwavering loyalty, to achieve their present positions.
Our Governor and the party under his leadership reward dedication, not showmanship
Strangely, a number of our comrades, shaken by the loss, only showed up for “anointed” tickets and were disconnected from party activities in their constituencies for a long time. You cannot reap where you have not sown. It is an injustice!
Others were so sure of their “political connections”, that they bragged to anyone who wanted to hear their special consideration from the Apex leadership despite evidence to the contrary, from the party leadership itself. -even, with the governor, publicly distancing himself from such claims.
No trustworthy party gives its ticket arbitrarily, without due regard to all compelling factors that may deny them victory at the general ballot box.
While the final choice may not please everyone, true party supporters always rally behind these winners to successfully deliver the party to the polls, regardless of their apprehensions. This informs part of the reward system used, after winning the general election.
Most state primary winners are clearly ardent party loyalists, who have supported all party activities over time and not just during election times.
This is the paradigm shift that happened in Imo APC under the distinguished Senator Hope Uzodinma.
Gone are the days when party tickets were given to the highest bidder or those with last-minute “upstairs orders”.
Furthermore, the Governor has stated unequivocally that the party will only reward those who have worked and suffered for this and true to his word, has fully demonstrated this, through this exercise, as an enduring standard to be emulated.
The vocal and resentful few who had previously benefited from similar processes, under previous administrations, are now trying to hurl insults at the party, its hierarchy and, by extension, the Executive Governor of Imo State, with their statements without surveillance.
They soon forget that in history people who have attempted this, painfully discover, that the party is the only vehicle by which political power can be achieved constitutionally, therefore they will always need it for their ambition.
The foreseeable problem in this scenario is that by trying to disrupt party unity, you are depriving yourself and your candidate of the moral right to expect favorable consideration in the future, as you will be viewed as a entity disloyal and destructive to the interests of the party.
Cases abound of individuals who, having lost their electoral candidacy in the primaries and feeling aggrieved, maintained their loyalty to the party to gain better positions later.
Compromise is the key!
It is better to channel your reservations with decorum, towards the appropriate bodies to obtain redress, than to publicly denigrate your party which is your constitutional vehicle in power. Disloyalty is a mortal sin in politics everywhere.
As a political analyst, I have always thought that “politics is not activism but a game of strategy and bargaining”
As we say of the Supreme Court in its finality; the party in Nigeria is not supreme because it is infallible, it is supreme because it is the final organ that gives the ticket to democratic power.
For those who think they can twist the party for selfish reasons, I advise them to reconsider their position.
In conclusion, my fellow party men and women, everyone remember the Igbo adage;
“Agbarusia ngene ekurukwa ngene nuo”
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