Due to the exclusion of women from elective offices, Mrs. Elizabeth Ativie, a former speaker of the Edo State House of Assembly, resigned from the All Progressives Congress (APC).
Ativie, who remained coy about which political party she would join, stated that she is looking for a third force for members to freely express themselves in addition to the APC and the Peoples’ Democratic Party (PDP).
She made her resignation public yesterday at a press conference held at the Edo State Council Press Center of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) in Benin City.
The letter of resignation was sent through the party’s chairman of Orhue Ward 4 and the APC chairman of Uhunmwonde LGA, Ehor, and was sent to the APC chairman of Edo, Col. David Imuse (rtd).
She said: “This letter is to convey to you that I have officially resigned from the APC, with immediate effect.
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“The reason for my resignation is attributed to the current unresolved crises facing APC in Uhunmwonde and Orhionwwon LGAs, and the entire APC in Edo State.”
There were rumors that the former speaker, a former chair of the NYCN’s Edo chapter, wanted to join the Labor Party (LP), but she remained mum on the subject, promising that her stance will be revealed within the next month.
Ativie said: “I wish to sincerely apologize for coming late. I was held up this morning at Edo State Secretariat of APC on Airport Road in Benin City when I went to submit my resignation. I thought I could just sneak in and out, but to my greatest surprise, all the officers were there, but they locked the door and said I was going nowhere. I told them that people were waiting for me. So, I had to leave. I actually dodged and left the place. I have very high regard for journalists.
“I wish to inform my teeming supporters and the general public that I have officially resigned from my former party, the APC, as a result of the crises since after the last primaries, in view of lack of internal democracy, with some persons allowed to hijack the party.
“It is not because I did not have the opportunity to have the ticket (to represent Uhunmwonde/Orhionwwon constituency in the House of Representatives), but I have been a feminine activist, and I have fought assiduously to ensure women inclusion in decision-making in Edo State and Nigeria.
“It is unacceptable that all the women in Edo State, who sought elective positions on the platform of APC in the primaries were illogically prevented from picking the tickets. APC does not have female candidate in Edo South Senatorial District that I belong. I cannot remain in such a political party that has no regard for women inclusion. Hence, I decided to throw in the towel.”
The former speaker asked her thronging fans to maintain their composure and promised that in a few weeks, she will announce her next political move or action to the entire world.
She praised Mrs. Aisha Buhari, the wife of President Muhammadu Buhari, for setting up a team to ensure that women are represented in all elective positions in the APC chapters across Nigeria and inviting all female candidates to a meeting in Abuja, but regretted that the Edo chapter of the party did not respect the First Lady’s decision despite her liaisons with Senator Abdullahi Adamu, the National Chairman of the APC, and President Buhari.