Former presidential candidate of Allied Congress Party of Nigeria, ACPN, has formerly resigned from the party.
Ezekwesili who had announced her withdrawal from the presidential race of the 2019 elections on the 24th of January, 2019, made her resignation, from the party she is representing, known during a press conference on Monday, 3rd of February, 2019 in Abuja.
The former minister, Oby Ezekwesili, returned her membership card and all other party items, saying that her relationship with the party went down the drain when she refused to go against the provisions of the Electoral Act to satisfy their monetary demands. According to her, the party was more concerned about money than winning the people’s votes.
“I was not using my global network to get some countries, organisations, and foreigners to donate money to their Party like the APC and PDP do. The more I told them I was committed to abide strictly to the provisions of the Electoral Act and INEC rules on campaign finance and was not going to negotiate that in order to satisfy their monetary demands, the more frustrated they became”.
Ezekwesili stressed that before she decided to run for president of Nigeria in October, she was a public policy expert. We can recall her active contribution and campaign for the #BringBackOurGirls during the Chibok Girls kidnap in Goodluck Ebele Jonathan’s regime. She said the ACPN approached her in a series of visit to run for the office under the party.
“ The Party appeared to be a good fit. It was founded by some disgruntled PDP member some years ago, but when it’s prime founder decided to return to the PDP, a core of its membership refused to move with him. I was told that they stayed back because of their opposition to the ways of PDP. Considering my vocal disapproval of the PDP and APC, I admired the ACPN’s decision to stand firm and refusal to be co-opted.
Also, the party came fourth in the popular votes count of the 2015 elections. So this was not exactly a mushroom party. We had several meetings before I chose to run on the ACPN platform, and in each of those meetings, I was clear to all that if the party was the same transactional money-grabbing politics that held us back, I will never go along with it.
My public stance that the nomination form for Presidency should not be above N100,000 was acceded to by the Party while they pressed me to join their fold”.
Politics and Values
Oby Ezekwesili said she knew her values would be tested but never expected it soon and from her own party members.
” The ACPN leadership demonstrated in deeds that they did not believe in my advocacy for a cleaner Party. They were not really interested in being a vehicle to break the bad politics championed by the #APCPDP. In fact, the ACPN leadership began to act like a junior sibling to the twin #APCPDP Party…Instead of the ACPN leadership to be honest about the strengths of the party and explain that some states did not have coordinators at the time, they hired fake coordinators and asked the campaign to fly them into Abuja”.
She described their endorsement of the ruling APC last week as “a classic Summersault…deceptive politics of transactions at it’s worst!”.
Ezekwesili claimed that ACPN had made the mistake of harboring two wrong assumptions about her.
” First , they assumed I was one of those who served in government and had a stash of looted public funds hidden somewhere to expend on the elections. When they realised that was not the case, they made a second wrong assumption by believing that I will be willing to go and obtain foreign cash to prosecute my campaign. The leadership of the Party became frustrated that I was not using my global network…the options before me were clear. I could give in to the ACPN’s desperation and use any means necessary to satisfy those fellows or I could uphold my values and leave their fold. I could succumb to their pressure, and pretend as though I did not see how utterly corrupt their ransom demands were and continue with the campaign or I could step up at great personal cost to myself, and say ENOUGH!”
Ezekwesili stresses that she cannot do anything that contradicts her values.
“I had to live my values; I had to follow the truth. And I am proud I did”.