Group warns Senator Abe against destructive portrayal of Ogoni people


A group known as the Ogoni Young Progressives Leaders Forum has expressed dissatisfaction over what it described as utter disbelief statement credited to Senator Magnus Abe allegedly portraying its people as being ungrateful.
Senator Magnus Abe.

This was contained in a statement by Dae Steven Deegbara, the Convener, Ogoni Young Progressives Leaders Forum, which was forwarded to the NATIONAL PANEL on Monday.

"We the Ogoni Young Progressives Leaders Forum read with utter disbelief statement credited to Sen Magnus Abe entitled "RIVERS APC, NO PLACE FOR VIOLENCE. IT'S TIME TO MOVE FORWARD", wherein he accused members of APC loyal to Rt Hon Chibuike Amaechi, leader of APC in Rivers State, as responsible for an alleged attack in ONELGA. 

"This statement posted on his verified Facebook account, is not only misleading, but an attempt to execute an external plot to plunge the now thriving Rivers APC into another round of needles crisis, and ultimately intended to portray Ogoni as "destructive people," parts of the statement read.

It further stated: "The Forum will like to advise Sen Abe to henceforth, stop deceiving and misleading young aspiring leaders to early political retirement without benefits, and desist from given Ogoni bad name.

"The Forum wonders how Abe sleeps at night, when in the day he is on one hand pretending to admonish his people to revalidate their APC membership, whereas at night his actions are discouraging his people from subscribing to the APC, even as he is refusing to leading by example? This is height of hypocrisy.

"Here we have a man who has greatly benefited from the benevolence of Rt Hon Chibuike Amaechi and on the sacrifices of the support of young Progressives in Ogoniland. Why won't he embrace the peace and help us, young people grow politically as he? Why always want Rivers APC to remain in crisis? Why always portray Ogoni as "ungrateful people", thereby scuttling the chances of our political growth as young people? 

"We are no longer children. Let it be known, Young Progressives Leaders in Ogoniland will no longer fold our hands and watch anyone truncate our political growth as a people. We will not accept any further actions such that may be capable of bringing us backwards, either as a political party or as a community. His actions are clearly not in the interests of Ogoni. 

"We hereby tender our unreserved apology to His Excellency, Rt Hon Chibuike Amaechi over the false accusations, and we admonish Sen Magnus Abe to stop accusing the Honorable Minister wrongly over what is obviously a theatrics written, directed from freedom house and acted in ONELGA."

The statement added: "Senator Abe should know that Rt Hon Amaechi is not ready to be distracted by petty accusations. The Honorable minister is focused on the delivery of the mandate of his office and Ogoni People are proud of his sterling performance, especially over the numerous political appointments he has attracted for sons and daughters of Ogoni, including attracting railway trough Ogoniland, the Ogoni Clean-up Project, and the Bodo-Bonny road passing through Ogoniland, among others.

"Nigerians are also happy, Amaechi is busy joining hands with President Muhammadu Buhari to build railways of unity across the country and connecting Nigeria to the part of economic prosperity.

"We have not forgotten, Sen Magnus Abe told us, and indeed the entire world, after the Supreme Court judgment that ousted Igo Aguma and subsequently validated Barr Isaac Abbot Ogbobula as Rivers APC Chairman, that he has accepted the judgment and that he remains a member of the APC under the leadership of Rt Hon Chibuike Amaechi. 

"It is on record, he told us and Rivers people, that he has henceforth disbanded all his factional APC activities and embraced the leadership of APC under Barr Ogbobula as directed by the supreme court, urging all his supporters to do the same.

"If Sen Magnus Abe is not deceiving young people, why still hold factional meetings in the name of APC without the knowledge or permission of the party? Why is he not practicing what he preach? Why has he not acted the talk and get himself integrated into existing party structures across the state, so his remnants supporters will follow his example? 

"Abe's freedom house complained about revalidation, that they were denied participation, an accusations all Rivers people know is untrue. He is recorded on video indicating he is clearly not ready to revalidate his APC membership. He discouraged his supporters here in Ogoniland not to revalidate their APC membership. 

"It is also untrue, because, as soon as he gave his half-truth "acceptance speech" after the Supreme Court judgment, most of us got integrated with the APC leadership in our various ward and LGA, and were revalidated by the party with ease. We were never denied revalidation. Why is it difficult for him to do as he says?

"Now, the party has given another opportunity, two weeks for people to revalidate their membership, just in case there were any on left behind during the last schedule. What is difficult with him and his supporters to go to their various wards to revalidate their membership of the party?

"Why is Abe still to holding factional meetings and conscript people to act a script? Zamfara has reconciled, is it not time for him to stop this destructive and divisive antics and embrace the wind of change blowing across Nigeria and Rivers State?

"For the avoidance of doubt, Ogoni Young Progressives Leaders Forum abhors violence of any kind. However, what went down in ONELGA is clearly a script written and acted by people conscripted under the watch of freedom house movie directors, to try to paint Rivers APC and the Leader of the party in bad light.

"The pictures posted are not clear, no video evidence, no one at the scene could be identified to be associated with Rt Hon Amaechi or the APC. The story behind the attack leaves more to be desired. We all know, all he is trying to do is to try to validate an external agenda, an agenda aimed at portraying Rivers APC as party in crisis and Ogoni as "ungrateful people". That agenda has failed spectacularly. 

"The world is already aware of this antics, Rivers people are in the know, the APC at the National level and in the state are aware and will no longer fall for it. The Forum will no longer fold our hands to have anyone repeat the ugly 2019 experience.

"APC in the 23 Local Government Areas of the state are moving forward and thriving under the leadership of His Excellency, Rt Hon Chibuike Amaechi and the party is fully prepared for the upcoming Congress. We urge Sen Abe and his team to embrace reality and join hands with His Excellency, Rt Hon Chibuike Amaechi leader to build Rivers APC back to winning ways. 

"We urge him and his supporters to go to their respective wards as directed by the National Secretariat of the APC to revalidate their membership of the party. It is as easy and simple as that.

"Let it be known, Ogoni people are greatful people. In time past, history has it that Ogoni leaders have always enjoyed the support and harmonious working relationships with other ethnic groups in the state. We are grateful and will continue to seek the support of other ethnic nationalities to achieve our desired political dream, but not with only one individual in focus, not with destructive approach, anymore. 

"The Forum plead with our leader, Rt Hon Chibuike Amaechi, the APC and Nigerians to kindly disregard the false accusations. We henceforth assure of our commitment and renewed determination to continue our ongoing mobilization to ensure the return of Ogoni to its normal status as traditional base of the APC in Rivers State

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