APGA Chairman: No Automatic Ticket for Umeh, Ubah, Bianca in 2019


* Says no plan yet to adopt Buhari as party’s candidate

David-Chyddy Eleke in Awka

The National Chairman of the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA), Chief Victor Oye, has called on those hoping to vie for elective positions in the 2019 general election on the platform of the party to get ready to contest for tickets.

Oye, in an interview with journalists in Awka, said there would be no automatic ticket for any member of the party, including the former national chairman, Senator Victor Umeh, oil magnate, Chief Ifeanyi Ubah and the wife of the demised leader of the party, Ambassador Bianca Ojukwu.

Though Oye said he was not aware if the wife of the late Biafran warlord, Ojukwu, was ready for the contest, he however stated that she and every other member of the party who wished to vie for election on the platform of the party must be ready to contest for tickets in a fair primary election.

The national chairman, who was reacting to questions from journalists over insinuations that some members of the party, who are deemed powerful may be handed tickets on a platter of gold for the contest, said such insinuation was wrong.

He said what has kept the party strong was the transparency it exhibits internally, adding that the party was not ready to destroy such trust because of a few individuals.

“I do not know if the wife of the warlord is running for Senate as you said, if she is interested, it is her right, but she must participate in the primary election.

“As for the insinuation that I favour Ukachukwu for the Senate ticket of Anambra South and the governor (Chief Willie Obiano) favours Bianca while the former national chairman (Umeh) favours Ifeanyi Ubah, I can tell you that there is nothing like that.

“How can you even think of a thing like that? That is not true. Ukachukwu does not even know my house, he has never sent anyone to meet me about that. I have no favoured person among the three. They are all my friends,” he said.

Oye also debunked the allegations that there is a battle of supremacy in the party between him and the former chairman, Umeh, as news of his interest in the latter’s senatorial position has become rife.

He said: “That also is another speculation, and it is not true. Let me tell you the truth, I have no ambition beyond what I am doing today (APGA chairmanship). I am being sincere with you, and it is the truth. My primary interest is to move the party forward, and that is what I am doing.”

He added that the party has not made any plan yet to adopt President Muhammadu Buhari as its candidate for the 2019 presidential election, saying that it was not a decision the national chairman can take alone.