By Anayochukwu Agbo

In ugwuanyiphobia, Anayochukwu Agbo demonstrates how Enugu Labour party managers scored an own goal they’re blaming on Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi.

Labour Party’s problem in Enugu State is self-inflicted. I covered the proceedings of the court case in Abuja. And from a professional point of view, we predicted that the primary would be annulled.

There couldn’t have been any other verdict if the court ruled on the submissions made by the parties to the case. I’m not a politician so taking sides doesn’t arise. From what I saw, it appeared the Party intentionally left the loopholes for the primary to be annulled.

The national chairman of Labour Party is a lawyer. He knows that exclusion leads to annulment. Yet they collected ₦25million from an aspirant, Evarest Nnaji, issued him nomination forms and receipts, and refused to invite him to the primary!

Such impunity cannot go unpunished in a civilised society. Nnaji produced receipts and Labour Party membership card to support his claims. Labour tendered no evidence to support their denial of excluding him. The Court asked for evidence of the notice of the date of primary. There was none.

Labour merely predicated their argument on the annoying arrogance that the party had the right to field the candidate of its choice. That’s impunity.

The Electoral Act provides the guidelines of how parties can choose their candidates and Labour intentionally didn’t follow that in Enugu State. Under the Act, the placeholder shall voluntarily withdraw from the contest to be replaced. The placeholder is Casmir Agbo, Enugu State Chairman of the party who is also said to be a lawyer. Two lawyers, state and national chairmen, yet there was no evidence the placeholder withdrew from the race! These appear to be intentional loopholes left for the primary to fail in court. And it failed. That was the correct judgment based on the facts tendered.

Hon. Chijioke Edeoga is the unfortunate victim of Labour Party’s internal duplicity. He was cleverly excluded as a party in the case, so he cannot even appeal the judgment.

Only Labour can appeal the judgment. They may not. And if they do, there cannot be any verdict contrary to the sound judgment of the lower court.
The only way out is for all the parties to prepare for the new primary.
That is where the sincerity of the party will again be on trial on the choice of delegates who will vote.

If the party continues the way it is going, Labour may not have a gubernatorial candidate in Enugu State in the 2023 election. The result of the court ordered primary will be the subject of another litigation. The other parties will be campaigning while the Labour aspirants Labour in court. In the end, the victor will be too weary to campaign effectively in the little time left.

The ugwuanyiphobia in Labour

The comedy is that uninformed Labour Party supporters are chasing shadows looking for scapegoats outside their party. And a ready punching bag exists in Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi. It’s much easier and more convenient to blame Ugwuanyi for Labour’s feud than to look in the mirror and see the real villains.

Did Ugwuanyi ask Labour to exclude Nnaji from the primary? Did Ugwuanyi ask Casmir Agbo not to withdraw properly as a placeholder? Did he ask Labour not to invite Nnaji to the primary after collecting his money?

Enugu State used to be known for sticking to the Truth. The Wawa ideology is a philosophy of fidelity to the Truth at all cost. When did we lose the capacity for logical reasoning?

The cacophony of thoughtless emotions drown the drizzle of Truth.

Cover Photo: Julius Aburime, Labour Party National Chairman

Ugwuanyiphobia in Enugu Labour Party