Senate Chief Whip Orji Kalu Denies Allegations Of Colluding With Buni To Scuttle APC Convention

Chief Whip of the Senate and lawmaker representing Abia North Senatorial District, Orji Uzor Kalu has denied allegations by the former Director General of the Progressive Governors Forum, Salihu Lukeman that the lawmaker was part of the plot to scuttle the March 26 date for the conduct of the All Progressives Congress convention.

In a statement which the former Governor of Abia state personally signed, Kalu said; "I have read the unfortunate accusations leveled against me by a former Director-General of the Progressive Governors Forum (PGF), Dr. Salihu Lukman.

"In a statement credited to Lukman, he alleged that some party leaders are working with the Chairman of the Caretaker/Extraordinary Convention Planning Committee (CECPC), Mai Mala Buni to undermine the March 26 national convention of the party.

"He specifically said  "there are other party leaders, including Sen Uzor Kalu who have actively supported His Excellency Mai Mala to undermine the decision to organise the National Convention of the party.”

"It is on this note that I consider it necessary to correct the wrong impressions Lukman must be making efforts to create. 

"There has been no time I participated in any collaboration or collusion to ensure that attempts to organise the APC National Convention are blocked.

"It will be recalled that on the December 15, 2021, I made an appeal to the party and the Caretaker/Extraordinary Convention Planning Committee members to consider postponing the national convention earlier slated for February. 

"I had warned that holding the convention in February without sorting out the minor disagreements that arose during the Congress would lead to implosion.

"I was worried that, the creation of factions which denied the party victory in so many states in the past elections may repeat itself. I therefore called for a peaceful resolution of the crisis before holding the Convention. No  peaceful and tactful leader, would support a terrible scenario to reoccur.

"It is important to note that I have always stood for and supported the party and Gov Mai Mala Buni only happened to be the Chairman of the  party. Aside serving as the Chairman of the party, Buni is my old family friend and I cannot deny him because he is facing challenges today. We have been friends and family for the past 25 years. 

"It is imperative to state that Buni has done very well for the party. His sterling leadership quality is what helped stabilise our great party across the six geopolitical zones, with high profile defections in our favour.

"In this time of challenge and misunderstandings, I am calling on the party leaders and stakeholders to guard  their utterances to avoid creating more disharmony. Even in a nuclear family,  disagreements and quarrels exist. 

"The APC is a very big party with several caucuses. We have the Governors, National Assembly,  Businessmen, Youths and Women among other caucuses. The directions and concerns of these caucuses should be taken into consideration at all times.

"Going forward,  Whether it is Gov Mai Mala Buni or Gov Abubakar Sani Bello, I would always give the party my maximum support and drive for stronger growth. There is always a danger with single story and I encourage Mr President to hear the two sides of the story so that the party can win together." the statement concluded.

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