Last Friday’s gruesome murder of the former traditional ruler of Mkpunando community in Anambra East LGA, Alex Edozieuno and his driver, Chukwuemeka has triggered an altercation between the All Progressives Congress (APC), and the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA).
APC had raised the alarm over plots by some top government functionaries in the state, to eliminate selected leaders of the party, claiming that the late Edozieuno was also its member.
But the APGA in its reply through the state governor, Willie Obiano Accused the APC of politicizing the death of the former monarch.
In a press conference by the Director-General of the Andy Uba campaign organization, Mr Paul Chukwuma and the state party chairman, Mr Basil Ejidike on Sunday, the duo said some leaders of the party in the state have been receiving death threats.
Chukwuma said some members of his party, including himself, has received threats for supporting the APC and its candidate, adding that the assassination of Edozieuno last Friday was politically motivated.
“We are here to brief you on a sad event that took place in our state on Friday. We woke up to the news of the assassination of Chief Alex Edozieuno. Until his death, he (Edozieuno) was the traditional ruler of Mkpunando community, before he was dethroned by the Obiano government.
“This death is of major concern to us because it is considered to be a politically motivated killing. We wonder how anyone could indulge in such an act, no matter how highly placed.
“A few weeks ago he joined our party in an elaborate political function. His reception into the party took place in his home town and was attended by many Anambra people, and now he is gone.
“Like late Edozieuno, most of our members, including the APGA lawmakers that defected to our party have been receiving death threats by phone calls. We wonder why the death threats to us and to members of our families, from highly placed individuals in Anambra, and a serving member of this government (names withheld).
“Our contest in Anambra has never gotten to a point where lives are lost and we are not taking this lightly. We are calling on the law enforcement agencies to move into action and conduct proper investigation since the threat has come to reality.
“Our resolve to salvage Anambra is not shaken. We could have swept it under the carpet, but the manner in which Edozieuno was killed is a source of concern to us. Things have gone bad in Anambra State, and infrastructure has broken down.
“We have had series of things go wrong in this state, but we have never addressed a press conference. We are forced to address this one because the issue at stake is bigger than the rest. I have been receiving threats and our party leaders too.
“We have decided to do things differently this time and we are reaching out to the people in the grassroots and by the grace of God it is yielding results and people are leaving APGA and PDP in droves to join our party, and it is apparent that some people are not happy with this.
“If this had happened on a Monday, it would have been blamed on IPOB. Let us distinguish criminals from IPOB, because IPOB has never threatened any APC member, and we have nothing against them,” Chukwuma said.
Meanwhile, Governor Willie Obiano reacting through the Commissioner for Information and Public Enlightenment, Mr C. Don Adinuba described the allegation as stupid and unintelligent, calling on the APC not to politicize the death of the former monarch or that of anyone.
A release by Adinuba read: “The Anambra State Branch of the APC held a press conference where its leaders attempted to politicize the brutal murder of the former traditional ruler of Mkpunando community in Aguleri, Anambra East Local Government Area, Chief Alexander Edozieuno.
“The APC leaders alleged some Anambra State Government officials and a member of the House of Representatives, Hon. Chinedu Obidigwe, had a hand in the murders, adding that the persons had been sending threatening messages to APC members.
“It is important to remind some politicians that it is asinine and callous to attempt to politicize the death of any person. To allege that the murders were preceded by threats and text messages without proof is preposterous.”
Adinuba said rather than politicize the ex-monarch’s death, the APC should provide whatever it has about the crime to the Nigeria Police Force, to help fish out the killers, as they are also the party in power at the federal level and controls the country’s security apparatus.
Obiano had immediately after the news of the killing on Friday ordered security agencies in the state to immediately swing to work, while the new state police commissioner in Anambra, Mr Tony Olofu also visited the scene of the event