All appears not to be well between the Cross River State chapter of the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) and its national leadership as the former has accused the latter of neglect in the scheme of things.
While reviewing the activities of the party in the state for 2012, the State Chairman of the party, Mr Hillard Eta, accused the national headquarter of marginalisation and inability to provide for the needs of the state branch of the party.
He alleged that the national leadership failed completely to look toward the plight of the state chapter, and that all efforts to draw their attention to numerous issues affecting the party in the state failed.
“We have put the national leadership on the scale and we have found them wanting. The state is completely cut off from the national level.
“And I must say it, that it has become so bad, such that the ACN, which is the second largest party in the state, does not have a state Secretariat,” he said.
This indifference, he noted was affecting the mobilisation efforts of the party in the state pointing out that the state chapter filed 24 cases at the state election tribunal after the 2011 general elections but that the party was asked to pay extra N400,000 for each of the cases.
“And as I speak, up till this moment the state chapter has not received a Kobo from the national headquarters as assistance in spite of several visitations in this regard,” he said.
Eta also said there was need for the party leadership to sit down and take another closer look at the party’s constitution as it affects Nigerians so that the ACN have an ideological which would offer the electorate the opportunity to vote on the basis of ideology.
“So that our people can vote on the bases of the ideology that we have rather than basing our campaigns on the good works of ACN Governors in Edo, Lagos and other states,” he said.
In his response, the National Youth Leader of the party, Mr. Miriki Ebikibina, said ACN was a true national party with state chapters across the Country.
Miriki, who represented the National Vice-Chairman of ACN, Mr Boss Mustaphar, said the national leadership of the party was concerned about the emerging popularity of the party in the South-south geo-political zone.
He revealed that the party was planning to move into two states including Cross River and Delta, with the view to capturing them in the 2015 general elections.
According to him, the national leadership was not neglecting the state chapter but that there was serious bickering in the Cross River chapter of ACN.
“I boldly say that infighting has been the problem in the Cross River chapter,” he said.
He said he had on several occasions tried to settle feuding factions of the party at the national level, adding that this had cost the party some support at the national level.
“My advice is that, we cannot win this state with infighting still going on. Let us work in unity and let us love one another,” he said.
He promised to convey the complaints of the chapter to the national leadership.