Tina Ezin, Calabar
The messy leadership tussle between the two factions of Labour party in Cross River State has taken another dimension as the faction led by the former Secretary of the party; Mr. Godwin Amoikwen threatened to sue the factional leader, Ogar Osim for an alleged impersonation, forgery and perjury.
This is coming on the heels of disagreements over the authentic candidates to represent the party in the forthcoming 2023 elections.
Embroiled in a factional war since INEC kicked off activities for the 2023 elections, Amoikwen and Osim had been at logger head over who is the authentic State Chairman of the party.
Amoikwen, who is currently the Political Commission Chairman of the party alleged that Osim was parading himself as the state chairman, insisting that based on the principle of succession, he succeeded the former Chairman, Mr. Joseph Inde who left for a higher calling.
According to him, in 2020, he was genuinely appointed by the former State Chairman of Organised Labour to act in interim capacity pending the conduct of congresses.
Amoikwen alleged that Osim fraudulently used placeholders on the list submitted to INEC with the motive of later selling party tickets to the highest bidders during the windows for substitution of candidates.
In his words, he alleged, “I am monitoring Osim very closely and will have him jailed for impersonation, forgery and perjury at the appropriate time.”
On the vexatious rejection of the list of candidates produced by Organised Labour, he explained, “after receiving Amb. Ogar Osim into the party and provided him the necessary materials to help him work, we wanted to harmonise our structures being that winning elections requires unity of purpose; we therefore invited him for series of meetings which he spurned. He evaded us with one flimsy excuse and the other.
“Seeing that he was not forthcoming, and deadline for the notification of INEC for the conduct of primaries was perilously close, we were compelled to invite INEC and other relevant stakeholders to witness primary elections to be conducted by us. We had successful primaries which produced verifiable candidates. We learnt that he later gathered nine persons at his office in Ambo and conducted a charade of a primary that produced over forty candidates who are his placeholders.”
When contacted to react on the alleged threat, Osim simply said the party is on a peace talk that in no time, every misunderstanding would be resolved.
In his words, “We have resolved to be in peace with them, they are part of us and they are part of the mobilization group and we are working together. Whatever happened is a family misunderstanding that can be resolved and we have already commenced a process of resolving them. We have already met TUC leadership to talk on peace so leave Amoikwen .”