The Prof Gregory Ibe Governorship Campaign Council has asked the Abia public to ignore an allegation by a purported chieftain of the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) that its principal, Prof Gregory Ibe lacks the capable to win the Abia governorship election of 2023, describing author of the allegation as a faceless fifth columnist.
In a statement in Umuahia signed by the Rev Sleek Ogbonnaya Ogwo, Director of Communication of the Campaign Council, the Council maintained that the fifth column treatise that bears all the trappings of a smear campaign was orchestrated by a defeated political opponent adopting the biblical ‘hand of Esau but voice of Jacob’ technique.
Full text of the statement reads: “Our attention has been drawn to defamatory online publication credited to a certain faceless Paul Nwogu, a purported chieftain of Abia State APGA.
“In the said article Paul Nwogu was quoted as having cast aspersions on the person of Prof Gregory Ibe, the Abia State candidate of All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA), erroneously alleging that he lacks the capacity to win the governorship election of 2023.
“According to the fifth column treatise that bears all the trappings of a smear campaign orchestrated by a defeated political opponent adopting the biblical ‘hand of Esau but voice of Jacob’ technique, the faceless Paul Nwogu purported that Prof Ibe’s profile as founder and proprietor of a private university is not sufficient to make him win the election and backed his unpopular position with an alleged lack of capacity to mobilize Abia APGA to victory.
“We would have ignored this obvious attempt to lampoon, disparage and defame Prof Gregory Ibe with intention of distracting him from focusing on the crucial task of consulting with different critical stakeholders in order to harness sufficient data needed for the formulation of policies that would crystallize in the emergence of a new Abia with limitless possibilities, but for the risk of misleading the good people of Abia we decided to make the following clarifications:
“1.That our investigation reveal that there is no person worthy of the revered title and appellation of ‘Chieftain’ within the Abia APGA family bearing the name of Paul Nwogu. We therefore challenge the faceless Paul Nwogu to authentic his meddlesomeness by stating his Ward and LGA for clarity.
“2. Subsequently that the inglorious online publication is apparently the handiwork of a defeated opponent, who as a serial loser has mastered the ignoble art of junk journalism as a means of maintaining relevance.
“3. That the Prof Gregory Ibe governorship campaign is a mass movement which Abians of different ideological persuasions are currently buying into due to the pedigree and antecedents of the APGA candidate.
“4. That Prof Gregory Ibe has repeatedly appealed to all stakeholders of Abia APGA including his opponents during the guber primaries of 29 May to join forces with him to deliver the state to the party in 2023.
“5. That one therefore wonders at the sincerity of a so called party chieftain whose greatest task should be the the job of contributing ideas and strategies to reposition APGA for victory rather than creating phantom enemies within the party.
“6. That the public should disregard the purported lack of competence and capacity since available records of Prof Gregory Ibe’s stallion and excellent performance in business, academia, unequalled philanthropy, consultancy to MDAs, local and international organizations are clearly visible and continuously attest to his pre ordination and divine preparation for the job.
“7. That Abians of voting age are once again reminded of the need to procure and secure their Permanent Voter Cards in other to participate in the important task of selecting and electing credible leaders at all levels during the forthcoming 2023 general elections.
“8. That subsequently our lawyers have been directed to scrutinize all defamatory publications meant to tarnish the good image and reputation of Prof Gregory Ibe with the view of seeking appropriate means of redress”.
Uche Nwosu is a two time Shell Petroleum PLC award winner in the year 2000;
He won the Shell Award on Investigative Journalism and Environmental Cleanliness.