Leadership, assessment and reassessment are the key factors that keep an organization together. As a matter of fact, the strength of every organization is easily assessed via its leadership.
Over the years, the leadership of our great party, the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA), has revolved only between Anambra and Abia, of which I have never had any problem about. APGA is a pan-Igbo party, no doubt, and every Igbo man is intrinsically an APGA member. To realize the project of making APGA a formidable party within the South-East especially, and other zones in general, there is every need to give each state a sense of belonging.
It is on record that Chief Chekwas Okorie from Abia State was the first National Chaiman of APGA. After him came Sir Victor Umeh of Anambra State, who chaired the party for a period of twelve years. If you add up the twelve-year administration of Sir Victor Umeh to the eight-year tenure of the outgoing Victor Oye, you will be arriving at Anambra holding forth the position of National Chairman of APGA for a period of twenty years.
The fact remains that Anambra State has tried and have also done well in holding forth the chairmanship position since the past twenty years. It will be a great disservice to other states if the position is not shifted from Anambra State.
Outsiders who are not members of our party always mock us that APGA is an Anambra business venture, which leaves us with constant defensive mechanisms. However, with the continuous hold onto the chairmanship position of APGA by Anambra, we may have no defense anymore.
The public will respect APGA the more and also see APGA from a different perspective as being really a national party if our Anambra leaders shun the move as being rumoured that they want to retain the party chairmanship position after 20 years. Let the position go to either Imo State or any other state. But Imo State must have the right of first refusal.
APGA by the grace of God has grown and has produced great personalities of impeccable character across the various states. It is therefore important to give each state a sense of belonging by allowing its apex leadership to circulate among every state. With this, the spirit of inclusion and oneness would have been deepened the more and all hands likely to be on deck in the project APGA.
Anambra, having had its fair share in the national leadership, should see it necessary to shift leadership to Imo or any other state within the South-East. This will help deepen the APGA spirit in other states, just like it is in Anambra.
Imo is the next vibrant APGA state after Anambra, judging from past political affairs. It is therefore my candid opinion that the apex leadership of our great party shift from Anambra to Imo in lieu of the ward, state and national Congresses that are around the corner.
At this point, I call on the leader of APGA and Anambra State governor, His Excellency, Prof. C. Soludo and the national chairman, Ozomkpu Victor Oye, to, as a matter of urgency, save the soul of APGA by considering the need to zone its national chairmanship position outside Anambra in the forthcoming congress.
Inasmuch as I have no interest whatsoever in any national leadership position of the party, there are men and women of repute in Imo who have fought with their hard earned resources over the years to ensure the sustenance of the party. Such people should be considered to man the APGA national saddle. This is the only way to deepen the APGA spirit in Imo and other states, because “oke zuo, iro alaa.”
Let us all, therefore, come to a roundtable and ponder on the need to rotate the APGA national leadership, for the interest of all states and members.
By Nduka V. A. Anyanwu