APC Screening Panel Rejects Disputed Winner Of Imo North Primaries

The screening committee of the All Progressives Congress (APC) for the forthcoming bye-elections in Imo North Senatorial District has disowned Frank Chkwuma Ibezim, who emerged as one of the disputed winners of the primaries polls.

Speaking to journalists in Abuja on Monday, the Chairman of the committee, Dr Lawrence Chukwu said the panel never cleared Ibezim to participate in the exercise.

He said; “Unfortunately, with utmost dismay, we noticed that our report which cleared five aspirants and have six not cleared for very cogent and verifiable reasons were jettisoned.

“Both the aspirants cleared and not cleared were allowed to run for the Senatorial primaries, embarrassingly, one of the aspirants not cleared is being touted as having emerged as one of the winners of the said controversial primary election.

“Our Committee cleared five aspirants namely Sen. Ifeanyi Ararume, Uchendu Chijioke, Edith Uwajimogu, Bright Nwachukwu and Eze Joachim Okoro. Six other aspirants were disqualified for not meeting the basic requirements and they are Hon. Matthew Omegara, Achonu Nneji, Ibezim Frank, Uchenna Uba, Onuoha Chijioke and Iheanacho Ihim.”

According to the panel chairman, Ibezim was disqualified due to discrepancies arising from his academic certificates and age declaration.

He explained that Ibezim’s academic certificates were reported lost and an affidavit was submitted to that effect but was not signed. “Hence, it was rendered invalid.”

The same problem applied to the statutory declaration of age document submitted.

“He submitted another affidavit stating the loss of his academic qualification certificates which was not signed by the deponent, this also rendered the document invalid.

“The said unsigned affidavit did not have a police extract in support, to show that he reported to the law enforcement authority,” Chukwu added.

The results of the primaries polls have generated a lot of controversies following the emergence of two parallel winners; Ibezim and Ararume with chieftains of the state party taking sides.

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