FORMER governor of Abia State, Dr. Orji Kalu, has appealed to the leadership of the All Progressives Congress (APC), its National Executive Committee (NEC), President Muhammadu Buhari and National Leader, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu to replace the late Prince Abubakar Audu with his son, Mohammed, in the upcoming governorship election in Kogi State.
The late Audu was the party’s governorship candidate in last Saturday’s election. Audu died on Sunday when the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) declared the election inconclusive even though he led his opponent, Governor Idris Wada with over 41,000 votes.
The eminent business mogul, who made the appeal yesterday from London, where he is attending a Commonwealth conference on business, said it would be a befitting tribute to the memory of the Prince of Lokoja.
He said: “Mohammed’s candidacy is the only way to immortalise his father’s name in acknowledgement of his innumerable contributions to the transformation of the APC and the development of Kogi State.
“Substituting Abubakar Audu with Mohammed will foreclose any intra-party squabbles that could arise following fresh primaries as planned by the party. Mohammed is eminently qualified to assume this arduous role. He should be given pre-eminence considering the circumstance of his father’s death at the weekend in Lokoja.”
In a release signed by his media adviser, Mr. Ebere Wabara, the former governor also pleaded with other APC prospective aspirants and all party stakeholders to rally round the late politician’s son as a way of honouring his father, pointing out that the Abubakar Audu he knew would have supported this kind of intervention had events been otherwise.
Also, Kalu has described the late Tor Tiv, Dr. Alfred Torkula IV as a peace-loving monarch whose era will not be easily forgotten in the history of Benue State.
He noted that the late first-class traditional ruler contributed to the socio-political development of Nigeria through his counsel on national unity.
In a statement signed by his Special Adviser, Prince Kunle Oyewumi, Kalu said: “The demise of the Tor Tiv is painful and disheartening considering the fact that he died when his vast wealth of wisdom was needed in Benue State and Nigeria as a whole. He was humble, humane, forthright and selfless. The late Tiv monarch used his resources to improve the well being of his people and was committed to a fair society. During his era, Benue witnessed unprecedented development in all ramifications. May God grant the Tiv monarch, a blissful rest,” Kalu said.
AGENDA for New Nigeria (ANN), a watchdog and non-profit making organisation has described as both defeatist and poorly conceived, attempts by some people to slander the person and office of the Director-General of the Industrial Training Fund (ITF), Mrs. Juliet Chukkas-Onaeko.
Describing the development as informed by an insensate and insensitive local politics of gender, ethnicity and religion, President of the organisation, Dr. Sam Abubakar said the torrent of attacks against the ITF DG is a reflection of the poor mentality of underdevelopment and “na we get am” psychology of her attackers.
A series of sponsored articles have been flying around lately, attacking both the person and office of the DG over alleged corruption in the region of billions.
But Abubakar, who claimed to have been compelled to react to the development for factors of truth and reason about the leadership of Chukkas- Onaeko at ITF said, “It is only a people, who are averse to change and determined to retain a stinking status quo of squalor and underdevelopment who would go all out against an otherwise innocent, innovative and hard working woman.”