Thursday, 4 May 2017

Is UNAA a Political Party or an Alumni Association?

 The happenings in the University of Nigeria Alumni Association [UNAA] since Abuja 2015 has reached an embarrassing level that people are now wondering whether it is another political party.

The gimmicks, the lobbying for positions, the intimidations, the insults, fighting, the bickering, conspiracies, bitterness, and other vices rocking the University of Nigeria Alumni Association [UNAA] are all the factors that characterize a political party.

The object of attack in this dirty game is the Deputy National President, a woman who has been the darling of many UNAA members.

The rising profile of the Deputy National President [DNP], Prof Florence Orabueze is seen by her adversaries as intimidation, and so she must be stopped by every means.

Recall that at the National Executive Council [NEC] meeting at Awka, the National President of the University of Nigeria Alumni Association, Chief Andrew Oruh had announced the suspension of his Deputy, Prof F. O. Orabueze which many perceived as being politically and ill- motivated.

Some believed that Chief Andrew Oruh was hell bent on removing Prof Orabueze as the Deputy National President in order to pave way for the emergence of his candidate as the National President at the bi-annual convention coming up in November, this year.

Newsburster blog went to town to interview some UNAA members who all pleaded anonymity.
One member from Benin branch said that he was disappointed that politics had taken a toll on UNAA, and advised that the president in the interest of the unity and progress of the association should refrain from actions capable of destroying the vision of the association.

‘It still baffles me how a high-profiled national officer like the Deputy National President should be embarrassed and suspended by the National President without recourse to the dictates of the constitution.

‘This has only presented UNAA as a political party, and had further dwindled our image in the eye of the university community’, he stated.

Another member from Owerri branch stated that the suspension of Prof Orabueze is politically motivated, because, the National President seems to have been nursing the wounds of the defeat of his lady friend, Princess Ngozi Dabrinze by Prof Orabueze at the Abuja convention, in 2015.

He further stated that Prof Orabueze is the darling of many members, and she has been consistent in sending goodwill messages to all.

‘Some people are not comfortable with her amiable disposition, and felt threatened by that, and her rivals felt she was more positioned to succeed the National President, and so they have to stop her by all means.

‘I want to believe that all the allegations leveled against her by the National President was just a case of give a dog a bad name and hang it.

‘But I want to warn that we should desist from actions capable of causing problems, and rather focus on how to move UNAA forward.

‘If we miss Prof Orabueze as the National President, we will have ourselves to blame. She is the only candidate who is in the position to restore and shore up the image and the reputation of UNAA.

‘You know that after the hosting of the West African Universities Game [WAUG] by our university in which Chief Oruh was the chairman of the planning committee, there was no presentation of account.

‘Moreover, the blacklisting of Chief Oruh from NBA following his alleged involvement in the plot against the former governor of delta state, chief James Ibori were all cases against UNAA National President.

‘Some people have queried the reason an association as large and renowned as UNAA should have the personality of Chief Andrew Oruh as its National President.

‘What do you expect? ‘Can a bad tree produce good fruits?’ he asked. 

A member from Nsukka branch said categorically that Prof Orabueze’s suspension was not only unconstitutional, but also fraught with malice, conspiracy and bitterness.

He said that the position of the constitution was explicit as regards the suspension and removal of a national officer.

According to the constitution, a national officer who must be found guilty of a named offence, must be suspended through a motion to be moved and seconded by national officers.

‘What did we see in NEC meeting at Awka? A member of UNAA who had not been coming to NEC meetings for a very long time, and who is not a national officer, suddenly appeared and moved a motion for suspension of our DNP.

‘Even the report given by Dr. Vincent Alabeke, the secretary of the Alumni Day Committee, and that of the National Treasurer, Christy Obikobe, all seemed to me that the duo were either sponsored, or had some scores to settle with the DNP.

‘It goes a long way to show that the National President is a puppet that any idiot can manipulate to achieve their mischievous aims.

‘I want to advise Chief Oruh to eschew any form of bitterness and hatred against his deputy, and make sure he leaves the executive of UNAA better than he met it, or at least the same way he met it.

‘We will resist any form of intimidation and harassment in UNAA. There is nowhere in the constitution where the National President was arrogated absolute powers to remove a duly elected national officer at his discretion.

‘Or when has it become a crime to host the best alumni day celebration ever?
Our source from Enugu branch stated that all the allegations against the Deputy National President emanated from the South-East zone.

According to him, some persons in the South-East zone with the DNP have interest either in the DNP or in the National President, and so they felt that the only person that stands between them and their ambition was Prof Orabueze.

‘Otherwise, how could this type of a thing be happening, and South-East zone has kept mute over it.

‘The National Secretary, National Treasurer, are all from the South-East zone. The South-East Vice-President, Lady Doris Okoro, Dr. Alabeke an ex-officio member are from South-East extraction.

‘South-East has over seven branch presidents, and has numerical strength over other zones.

‘How could they all be there, and a member of their zone is being crucified, and they did, nor said nothing. They even testified against her.

‘What does it show? I am asking you, Newsburster reporter? Is it not conspiracy and betrayal, because some of them are interested in being the DNP and the National President.

‘Shame on South-East zone. I am ashamed of them’, he shouted.  

When Newsburster contacted the Deputy National President, Prof Florence Orabueze on her purported suspension, and if she would seek redress in a law court, she said she would leave everything in the hands of God.

Recall that Prof Florence Orabueze was appointed the Chairman, Alumni Day Committee last year, and she organized the best alumni day event ever.

According to her, the National President refused to release enough money needed for the event, and she had to run to the university for assistant.

‘Can’t you see that this is a ploy by the president for me to fail so that he would turn back to tell UNAA that I could not organize an event, how much more preside over UNAA if I become the president.
I pray that UNAA members would all see the politics behind the allegations, and call him to order.

Newsburster blog also asks Prof Orabueze how she would react as some people might take advantage of the issue between her office and the National President to contest for the president.
God is the king maker. If He says I will be the National President, nobody can stop it.  

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