Activities marking the 2023 elections have commenced in earnest. Aspirants, especially presidential, have continued their solicitation of support from critical stakeholders and delegates across states of the Federation.
On Wednesday, 18th May, 2022, one of the Presidential aspirant on the Platform of the APC and the national leader of the APC, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu took his message to the delegates from Benue State.
What would have turned out to be a great outing for him turned out to be his greatest undoing.
A cross section of visibly angry delegates who pleaded anonymity said that the coordinators of Bola Tinubu in the state, Hon. Dickson Tarkighir and Hon. Mark Hanmation connived with the state chairman of the APC, Comrade Austin Agada to defraud the delegates of the money meant for them.
The delegates decried that, the Tinubu coordinators pocketed the 100 million out of the 150 million given for delegates. At the end of the day delegates took home a paltry N100. 000 (one hundred thousand Naira only)
Some of the delegates wondered why Asiwaju Bola Tinubu would hand over his campaign to Hon. Dickson Tarkighir who is looking for funds to contest the Makurdi / Guma house of Representative seat and Hon. Mark Hanmation who lost out of the gubernatorial race and is desperate to recoup the monies he wasted for consultation.
The delegates commended the orderly organization of the visit of the former minister of transportation Rotimi Amaechi by his handlers.
They praised the Executive Secretary of the shippers council Barrister Emmanuel Jime who sat and insisted that delegates get the monies meant for them.
At the meeting with Rotimi’ Ameachi, on Thursday, 19th May 2022, Barrister Jime publicly declared that a sum of 250 thousand had been provided for each delegate. This recieved a thunderous applause from the delegates who applauded the transparency in the Ameachi visit.
Shortly after this declaration, the state chairman of the APC, Austin Agada announced that as a result of logistics short falls, 100 thousand will be deducted from the monies meant for each delegate to cater for other interests. An enraged Barrister Jime practically confiscated the microphone from the state chairman and insisted that at his level, he cannot make an announcement and Agada will counter without due consultation with him. After several pleas, Jime accepted that only 50 thousand should be deducted from each delegate to cater for what ever logistics.
Many delegates have accused the Austin Agada led state EXCO of lack of transparency and incompetence in the management of all activities of the party in the state most especially finance.
Candidates contesting on the Platform of the APC have before now accused the Agada led EXCO of extortion of exorbitant magnitude under the guise of secretariat services when they visit the secretariat for purchase of Forms, screening and submission. of completed forms.
Many delegates resolved to work for the aspiration of Ameachi whom they said they have seen transparency in his campaign.
A delegate from the Benue South zone who would not want his name mentioned commended Barr. Jime for the transparency. He stated further that one of the reasons the people of zone C rejected the state chairman of the party Comrade Austin Agada was because of his dubious nature and lack of probity. According to him, Agada remains an imposed state chairman from Zone South zone.