APC, PDP, APGA lock horns in Imo bye-election

There is palpable tension in Imo State ahead of the Ngor Okpala Imo State Constituency bye election scheduled for today.

Three political parties in the state, the All Progressives Congress, APC, the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP and the All Progressives Grand Alliance, APGA, are the major contenders in the election.

The three major parties exhibited their determination to win the bye election by embarking on campaigns to seek the votes of the masses in Ngor Okpala.

The state governor on Thursday led a campaign team to the local government to drum up support for his party’s candidate, Bleden Amajirionwu

Some analysts described the election as a litmus test for the political parties ahead of the 2023/24 Imo governorship election.

They said the Saturday polls have generated fierce political fireworks leading to accusations and counter accusations by all parties involved.

The PDP fired the first salvo in a statement signed by its acting Publicity Secretary, Mazi Emenike Nmeregini, on Tuesday, when the party alleged that the ruling APC intends to abduct its leaders during the elections and disrupt voting in polling units across Ngor Okpala, by stationing 10 hoodlums per polling unit to perfect their plans of rigging the election.

The APC in Imo, realizing how unpopular it is and that it cannot win any peacefully conducted election, has now resorted to violence” part of the statement stated.

The party further alleged that the APC candidate unleashed havoc on PDP supporters using hoodlums and militia groups to disperse a PDP rally.

Reacting to the development, the Imo State government faulted PDP’s claims.

Information and Strategy Commissioner, Declan Emelumba, said the PDP is a sinking party that foresees defeat in the bye election.

“The PDP knows that it will lose the bye election, hence it is looking for alibi.

“Governor Hope Uzodimma is a democrat who believes that people will always freely choose who they want in an election unhindered. He will never subscribe to vote buying.

“At any rate, Ngor Okpala people are sufficiently enlightened not to return an irresponsible party that abandoned their seat in the House of Assembly for two years, to the same House” he said.

The All Progressives Grand Alliance, APGA, in the state, however called for peaceful elections, but warned that it would not fold its arms and watch its supporters attacked or rigged out of the bye election.

State Chairman of the party, John Iwuala, warned that APGA would resist any attempt to attack its members or supporters before, during and after the bye election.

“We would resist any attempt to attack our party members in Ngor Okpala. Anyone who unleashes violence on our members would be resisted and we would equally return violence for violence” he said. Meanwhile, INEC has expressed its readiness for Imo bye-election.

“We would resist any attempt to attack our party members in Ngor Okpala. Anyone who unleashes violence on our members would be resisted and we would equally return violence for violence” he said. Meanwhile, INEC has expressed its readiness for Imo bye-election.

The commission said that 11 political parties would take part in today’s (Saturday’s) bye- election in the Ngor Okpala Local Government Area of Imo State.The Resident Electoral Commissioner in the State, Francis Ezeonu, said that the commissioner was ready for the bye-election.

The state House of Assembly had declared the seat vacant citing the inability of the former occupant, Tochi Okereke, to perform his legislative duties.

Nation

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