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Benue APC crisis deepens as Young Alhaji drags Senate Minority Leader to court

*alleges illegal constitution of State Executive

The crisis rocking the Benue State chapter of the All Progressives Congress (APC) took a turn for the worse as a top leader of the party, Alh. Usman Abubakar aka Young Alhaji today dragged Senate Minority Leader, George
Akume and 4 others before the Benue State High Court sitting in Makurdi, the state capital.
Young Alhaji, was the running-mate to Governorship candidate, Prof. Steve Ugbah on the ticket of the now defunct Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) at the 2011 elections, and he is praying the court, among other things, to
declare the elevation of Barr. Targema Takema as Chairman of the Benue APC Harmonisation Committee as an illegality and as such a nullity.
Also joined in the suit as co-respondents with Senator Akume are the APC National Secretariat, the party’s Benue State Secretariat, Barr. Targema Takema and Gen. Aboki (Rtd.).
In an ex-parte motion filed before the High Court 5, Makurdi, Lead Counsel to Young Alhaji, Barr. Ataguba Solomon Aboje sought the court’s declaration that Barr. Targema Takema is not the Chairman of the
Harmonisation Committee of the APC in Benue State, and as such he should be restrained from acting in such capacity.
However, responding to the motion, Presiding Judge of the court, Justice S.O. Itodo asked that the matter be remitted to another judge to adjudicate on, citing his long-standing close personal relationship with the applicant, Young
Alhaji and his family, a situation which technically disqualifies him as an impartial
arbiter in the matter.
Speaking to the press outside the court, Young Alhaji lambasted Senator Akume whom he accused of tyranny and insensitivity to the collective interests of the APC family in the state, as according to him, “Akume sees
himself as a Demi-God and as such thinks whatever is good for him (Akume) should automatically be good for the entire APC.”
“Akume’s high-handedness is such that he has no regard for laid down procedures and rule of law, as shown by his imposition of Barr. Takema as the Chairman of the Harmonisation Committee, in flagrant disregard for the
stipulations of the party’s constitution which clearly states who is qualified to be a member
of the committee.” He said.
Speaking further, the veteran opposition leader pointed out that Barr. Takema was not qualified to have been a member of the Harmonsation Committee, being that he was at no time a NEC member of any of the legacy political parties which merged to form the APC, but that his name was fraudulently listed as a NEC member of the ACN.
The Idoma-born politician, renowned for his doggedness, debunked insinuations that he may be acting the script of the ruling PDP, as according to him; “between I and Akume, it is Akume who is more likely to be acting the
script of the PDP, for I have never in my entire political life had anything to do with the PDP, but Akume is the foundation member of the PDP in this state, and that is why he epitomises all the negative traits of the PDP inhis kind of politics.

He is  just old winepretending to be in a new bottle.”
Reacting, Lead Counsel to the APC, Barr. Omale Omale, who was the Legal Adviser of the
defunct ACN in the state, contended that all that was done in the composition of the Harmonisation Committee of the party in the state was do din line and conformity with laid down procedure.
“The party guidelines and constitution are very clear on who qualifies to be a member of the committee, and in line with s uch, Barr. Takemaas a co-opted NEC member was nominated by Senator Akume to chair the committee, and this is acceptable within the powers accorded Akume as the highest elected office holder in the state, hence the leader of the arty.” Barr. pOmale held.
The suit has been remitted to High Court 3, Makurdi, pending fixing of date for further determination.

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