A Foundation member of the All Progressives Congress (APC) from the southeast, Professor Vitalis Ajumbe, has withdrawn from active party politics, hinting at his decision on poor remuneration by the leadership of the ruling party.
The Igbo chieftain regretted that despite his immense financial and moral contributions and support to the development of the governing APC, he was relegated to the background.
Ajumbe who was an ex-Commissioner of Information, Tourism and Public Utilities in Imo State, made this known in a letter dated and addressed to the Governor of Imo State, Senator Hope Uzodinma, forwarded to DAILY POST on Friday.
He said: “ever since this APC regime, i have not been rewarded for my sacrifices for the party in terms of befitting appointment. His Excellency, Rochas Okorocha, as the Governor of Imo State, in 2015, gave me appointments (due to the role i played for him during his 2nd term election and NOT as APC member). He appointed me as the Chairman, Management Committee of Imo Broadcasting Corporation, IBC where I raised the internally Generated Revenue, IGR of IBC from zero monthly income, to N13 million monthly income. I increased the staff welfare and maintained the equipment. I also reduced the Government Monthly Subvention to IBC from N26 million to N13 million. Due to his good performance at Imo Broadcasting Corporation, Okorocha appreciated and appointed him on merit as then Commissioner for Internally Generated Revenue and Pension, to use my expertise to raise IGR of Imo state and I did. I performed well in this ministry and he later redeployed me to a new ministry he created for me as Commissioner for Information, Tourism and Public Utilities and other four appointments.
The elder statesman continued, “APC at the national level has not rewarded me. That was why in 2016, i brought together, former National Executive Committee members (NEC) of the defunct ANPP in Abuja and sponsored a meeting where we planned to pull out of APC government but for the intervention of the then Governor of Yobe State, His Excellency, Alhaji Gaidem. This group is still intact today and goes by the name, GNG(Great Nigerian Group). I led this group for a meeting with Senator Shettima at his Abuja residence two days before his unveiling as the APC vice Presidential Candidate as a former member of the defunct ANPP”.
Ajumbe further explained that he is recognized and accepted by top northern politicians who valued and opened their doors to welcome him whenever necessary, regretting that he was not valued by the APC despite huge sacrifices, and coupled with his several private meetings with Governor Uzodinma.
His words: “Sir, recall my private meeting with you late last year at your residence in Government house, when i told you that i do not need any appointments or contracts from your government but you i would give you advice that will add value to your government for the good governance of Imo state. I believe that the advice I gave made sense to you.
“Your Excellency, for the assignments you gave to me, you made it difficult for us to meet so as to submit my reports. You had invited me on several occasions to come to Owerri for a meeting with you. I would spend my money on flight tickets, hotel accomodations and other logistics and spend weeks in hotels without meeting with you. I have spent over N5 million of my personal money trying to keep to our appointments that were never held.
“Your Excellency, I am deciding that, instead of spending my money, to remain aloof or leave APC and party politics. I have known that those who suffer for APC do not get rewarded at last. On 25th of May, 2021, i was appointed and inaugurated as a member of the APC and Presidential Think Tank Committee by His Excellency, Mai Mala Buni, Yobe State Governor, as the then National Chairman of APC on behalf of President Buhari. This position is more of advisory and image laundering and without salary. As an elder at 62 years of age now, my wants are limited. I only work for the good governance of Imo state for my children and those unborn and Imo people.
“With the level of my national contacts which I have accumulated over the years, I can get my wants without being a member of any political party. I want to remain a political consultant for those who know my value. As an elder statesman of this state, Imo, who desires its progress, I am always ready, if called upon, to assist in any way, free of charge, to add value to your administration that will give my state (Imo) good governance”.