Tussle for the control of the leadership of the All Progressives Congress, APC, Bayelsa State took a dangerous twist over the weekend following the suspension of the top echelon of the present executives.
The Safe Bayelsa APC group said yesterday that the alleged suspension was purely done to please one powerful individual whom it described as ‘a clog in wheel of APC’s progress in the state’ stressing that unless the national body intervenes, the party would disintegrate.
State Chairman, Chief Tiwei Orunimigha, his Deputy, Eddy Julius and the Secretary, Daniel Marlin, were placed on indefinite suspension over alleged cases of gross misconduct, financial embezzlement and anti-party activity.
Through a release on Friday by the 21-member executive, it was alleged that they were found guilty of financial impropriety, a source who did not want to be mentioned, said the crisis may not be unconnected with the suspended members’ insistence against the hard stance of former Governor Chief Timipre Sylva, who, according to sources, wants total control of the party structures.
Before the crisis went haywire, Chief Sylva was alleged to have insisted on having persons loyal to him on the delegates list for the forthcoming convention and subsequent local council polls.
In Friday’s suspension, the party however said alleged cases of gross misconduct, financial embezzlement and anti-party activity could not be tolerated hence the decision to act quickly before things goes awry.
The 21 members of the state executive committee of the party at the end of an emergency meeting in Yenagoa, declared the former Central Senatorial District Vice Chairman, Joseph Fafi and Alabo Martins as the interim Chairman and Secretary respectively.
The state executive committee of the party in a statement signed by its Publicity Secretary, Panebi Fortune, stated that “At an emergency State Executive Committee meeting held today 1st of April, 2016, the following were reached that the cases of gross misconduct, financial embezzlement and anti-Party activity against the State Chairman, Chief Tiwei Orunimighe, the Deputy Chairman, Eddy Julius and State Secretary, Daniel Marlin.”
“The state chapter of the party, this day therefore has placed the aforementioned individuals on indefinite suspension pending the conclusion of investigations.”
It would be recalled that some factions of the APC in the state led by the Party Chairman, Chief Tiwei Orunimighe had on Tuesday slammed the party’s candidate in the last governorship election in the state, Chief Timipre Silva, for allegedly sidelining the leadership and trying to ‘corner’ federal appointments due the state for only his cronies.
The action triggered angry reactions among loyalists of Chief Timipre Sylva with members of the state working committee of the party led by the organ secretary of the party, Sir Tonye Okio, and the only elected member of the State House of Assembly of the APC, Hon. Isreal Sunny-Igoli dismissing the claims against Chief Timipre Sylva.
While Hon Sunny-Igoli, the member of the State House of Assembly representing Brass Constituency 1, said though the members of the party in the state have since discovered the anti-party antics of the aggrieved party members as alleged blackmail for appointments, Chief Sylva has never negotiated with anybody for appointments and he has remained a trusted and dependable leader.”

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