The All Progressive Congress (APC), Imo State chapter, has denied allegations by the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) that its party had resorted to dubious means to increase its membership base in the state.
The Imo PDP had accused APC of registering new members under the pretext of conducting census, INEC registration and empowerment programs in the state.
But reacting in an interview with THE WHISTLER on Friday, Director General of the Imo APC new media, Cajethan Duke, dismissed the party’s claims as baseless.
Duke told our correspondent that Imo residents were too enlightened not to know the difference between when they’re joining a political party and registering for census or other programmes.
“I want to extend my sympathy to the media team of the PDP; I sincerely sympathize with them because they are in a state of confusion and share hallucination.
“We cannot continue to allow PDP to insult the sensitivity of Imolites. Imolites are well informed people, politically exposed people in the south east part of Nigeria and it is insulting to believe that Imolites are being misled into party registration in the name of census enumeration and social welfare package of the Federal government.
“Imolites know the difference between census enumeration exercise, voter’s registration exercise and party registration exercise.
“what is happening in Imo state is that Imolites have come to appreciate the brand we have in the state called APC. Imolites have come to appreciate the leadership of the governor, Distinguish Senator Hope Uzodinma and majority of the prominent members of the PDP are taking this opportunity to identify with the APC in the state.
“So, PDP is just frustrated with the rising profile and popularity of APC in Imo. So, they are just hallucinating and making these vague allegations,” he said.
The Imo PDP had made claim against APC in a statement issued by its publicity secretary, Ogundu Nwadike, on Friday.
“Part of their shameful strategy, having been convinced that the people have rejected them nationwide due to its failure in all indices of governance, is to induce and deceive the good people of the state with such blatant lies as, ‘there is ongoing census exercise, INEC registration and empowerment programs.
“The APC is also desperate to procure members at all cost with such false claims as, ‘the exercise will be used for the payment of unemployment benefits, sharing of proceeds from Abacha loot, and crediting of accounts of Nigerians under federal government’s empowerment programs.’ These are all blatant lies! Absolute falsehood! APC are known liars!
“There is no census going on in Nigeria or Imo State. INEC is not conducting any registration exercise anywhere. There are no empowerment benefit plans. There are no plans to credit bank accounts of Nigerians.
“Registration in a political party is not by force. There is freedom of choice and association. PDP members and indeed the general public in Imo State should not succumb to any pressure or force by anybody to register with APC against their wishes.
“APC is hereby warned to desist from using falsehood and propaganda to force citizens to register with it. The party cannot force itself on the people.”