The political disagreement between President Goodluck Jonathan and the Rivers State Governor, Mr. Chibuike Amaechi, appears to have torn the University of Port Harcourt Alumni Association apart.
Both Jonathan and Amaechi, who had been at daggers drawn for political reasons, are graduates of UNIPORT.
While the national executive committee of the association maintained that the National President of the group, Chief Ike Chinwo, had been removed from his position, Chinwo insisted that he remained the leader of the association.
It was gathered that while some members of the executive committee of the association were pro-Jonathan, Chinwo, who hails from Ikwerre, the same ethnic nationality with the state governor, was perceived to be pro-Amaechi.
The committee had, in a communiquÃ© signed by the first National Vice-President, Chief Edward Ngene, and 10 others, announced Chinwoâ€™s removal as the president of the association so as to pave the way for him to pursue his political ambition.
The national executive committee said it could no longer allow the destruction of the association as a result of the partisan political activities of its national president.
â€œThe National Executive Committee has lost confidence in the ability of Chinwo to pilot the affairs of the association along non-partisan political path and thus passed a vote of no confidence in him,â€ part of the communiquÃ© read.
But According to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), Chinwo, who spoke with journalists yesterday, said he was still the national president of the association, adding that the process of impeaching the national president or any national officer of the association was clearly spelt out in Article 11, section 2 of the groupâ€™s constitution.
He said: â€œIt is pertinent to state that none of these steps have been taken neither was any written allegation received at the last executive committee meeting held on February 7, 2014 at the national secretariat.
â€œEven if any allegation was received in line with the provisions of our constitution, it is only the national executive council, comprising the branch presidents, that can initiate any of those processes.
â€œWorst still, it was shocking to read from the newspapers that my only offence is my membership of a political party other than their preferred one, which they (members of the national executive committee) all belong.â€
He, however, called on members of the association to discountenance the statement by some members purporting the discontinuation of the performance of his duties as the national president of UNIPORT Alumni Association.
â€œThey lack the powers to do so and their actions are procedurally defective,â€ Chinwo said.