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Repositioning APGA for national leadership


The All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA), which prides itself as the foremost progressive political party in Nigeria, was mirred in controversy and unending legal tango across court rooms in Nigeria prior to the election of the Governor of Anambra State, His Excellency, Chukwuma Soludo, CFR; and subsequent election of Barrister Sly Ezeokenwa as National Chairman at the party’s National Convention on May 31, 2023.
As at the last count, there were said to be over 50 court cases most of which were seeking determination of the authentic National Chairman with the most baffling ruling coming out of a Court in Birnin-Kudu, Jigawa State.

Whereas doomsday scenarios were being fanned out by pessimists about the future of APGA, the new national executive led by Sly Ezeokenwa, bouyed by the mandate of the party and the national leader, set forth at inception to change the perception of a fractured party to that of a positive pan-Nigerian profile befitting its motto: Be Your Brothers and Sisters Keeper! As the national executive of APGA marks one year on the saddle, it goes without saying that the ship of the party has been steadied through share diplomacy and accommodation of all as well as deft management of the party affairs inspite of subsisting challenges.

On the trail of APGA progress within the period, some wonder where the current APGA National Chairman got the dexterity for political party administration. Well, Sly is a scion of the pioneer APGA Local Government Chairman, Onitsha South, Chief Sylvester Okenwa Snr; acknowledged by many for exemplary dedication and selfless leadership of the party. As the saying goes, “the apple never falls far from the tree,” having learned at the feet of his father, Sly’s staying power and deft leadership skills are evident in his patience, dedication and unwavering commitment to duty.

A towering and unassuming young man, sharpened by mentorship and invaluable experience, his intelligence belies his age. Ezeokenwa’s philosophy of service and value, is a life shaped by a near-death experience long ago. Hence, he has continued to live by these principles in and out of politics.

Fondly called Sly by friends and associates, Ezeokenwa started out as the APGA State Legal Adviser, and carried with him the knowledge and treasure troove of the party’s history he learned from his father to the legal office where he acted as the clearing house for all the court cases as APGA’s National Legal Adviser. He also doubled as an aide to the immediate past National Charman of APGA, Ozonkpu, Sir, Victor Oye whose tenure was largely in the eye of the storm.
As a forward-looking political party, Ezeokenwa and his team embarked on “DRIVE APGA” campaign which is an acronym for Discipline! Repositioning! Inclusivity, Visibility and Expansion! They set out by quietly consulting and re-intergrating stakeholders across Nigeria to the fold. Again, recognizing the import of the bourgeoning youth population and its impact on the Nigerian political landscape, they’re set to commence digital registration to drive membership, and the mainstreaming of young persons to have a sense of belonging and provide leadership. A typical ingredient, is the party’s concept of reducing the cost of Nomination to Office by 50 per cent to encourage youth aspirants.

Ezeokenwa believes that APGA has shown exemplary leadership and profound developmental credentials since the party took the reins of leadership in Anambra State in 2006; stressing that Soludo’s record of achievements in two years is a testimonial to the party’s ideology of leaving no Nigerian behind through people-based development programmes across health, education, agriculture, human capital, infrastructure development and workers welfare. As the thirty-one national executives of APGA led by Barrister Sly Ezeokenwa marks one year in office, it is safe to assume that the newly repositioned APGA is on a sustainable path to achieving a leadership of Nigeria’s dream.
• Ozumba writes from Ward-4 Urunnebo, Enugwu-Ukwu.

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