By Udora Orizu
The National Interest Party has picked the party’s Chairman, Mrs Eunice Atuejide as its presidential flag bearer for the 2019 general elections.
The choice of Atuejide was unopposed by members to its recent convention in Abuja. In attendance were members of the party drawn from the 36 states of the federation and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT). the T held under the supervision of a team of INEC officials led by Mrs. Nkechi Abah, Mr Mas’ud Hassan and Mr Uye Asuquo.
Thanking members for giving her the presidential ticket, Atuejide said her campaign watchword will be transparency and accountability.
She also explained that NIP’s membership of the Coalition of United Political Parties (CUPP) did not mean an end to party’s sovereignty, saying that the CUPP was not a merger.
“With the few candidates we have, we joined the coalition to negotiate with them so that our view can get in. I will still do a second primary in CUPP, because I’m a member of the strategic planning committee I have convinced them to allow us do a free and fair primary.
We are not joining NIP, it’s good to have that coverage because we are pushing our agenda further, I’m a member and secretary of one of the highest committees there. The coalition has not been a bad idea. We will never be part of anything that hurts Nigeria. The CUPP is a group of big and small parties and what I need to do is to convince them that I’m the best candidate to represent them in 2019, when the CUPP is backing you, half of Nigeria is backing you,” Atuejide said
She revealed that as a result of recent anti-party activities of some members of the National Executive Committee, it became expedient that the convention, in line with the provisions the party’s constitution address their actions.
The convention passed votes of no confidence on erring members of the party who illegally purported to suspend the National Chairman and National Secretary.
Consequent upon the successful passing of the votes of no confidence, the convention resolved to expel the erring members, as well as the ineffective members of the NEC and the entire process was observed and endorsed by the INEC officials present at the convention.
The NEC members that were expelled from NIP at the convention include the Deputy National Chairman Ibrahim Barde Suleiman, National Legal Adviser Sanni Abass Itopa, National Internal Auditor Bontim John Nanpon, Deputy National Financial Secretary Salman Ibrahim Ishola, National Treasurer Hadiza Hussein Abdullahi, National Organising Secretary Jude Osasere Ogbeide, Deputy Social Media and Cyber Monitoring Secretary Azeez Oladipo Yusuf, National Fundraising Secretary Priscilia Uloba.
Also expelled were the Deputy National Youth leader Audu Noabumuemo Dodo, National Financial Secretary Abdulkadir Ahmed Bello, Deputy National Media and Publicity Secretary Edidiong Peter Eyoh and Website Development and Maintenance Consultant Umar Umar Kaoje.