VIOLATION OF RULE: Fresh Crisis Rocks Aba Sports Club As Presidential Aspirant Heads to Court

VIOLATION OF RULE: Fresh Crisis Rocks Aba Sports Club As Presidential Aspirant Heads to Court

By Arinze Obiozor.

The forthcoming election of Aba Sports Club has continued to generate more controversies in view of the decision of the outgoing President, Chief Jerry Kalu, to handpick a successor by all means. However, the issue is not so much about the imposition of a surrogate, which majority of the Club members see as unacceptable and insulting. A bigger grouse for the members, our source disclosed, is that the person who Chief Kalu is plotting to foist on the Club, one Chief Greg Okafor, does not have the requisite academic qualification to hold office as Rule 8 (b) of the Club provides.

What has pointed to the determination of the outgoing President and members of his Management Committee to bend the rule was the response which one of the presidential aspirants, Chief Emeka Diwe, got when he requested for an opportunity to peruse the educational credentials of his co-aspirant, Chief Greg Okafor. In a bizarre letter which is circulating in various WhatsApp platforms and which was signed by the General Secretary of the Club, Darlington Nwokolo, Diwe was told that Okafor, who is still a diploma student at Abia State Polytechnic, has only acquired the very same diploma which he is still studying to acquire. The letter further boasted that Chief Okafor, who has been admitted into a school, is assumed to have graduated from that school, hence he is qualified to hold office as President of the Club.

This clearly lame explanation and uninformed defense has opened a can of worms in the Club, just as it has pushed members to begin to question the integrity and intellectual capacity of those in the Management Committee. Members have kept pointing out that what the Club Rule 8 (b) says is that “Each Officer shall have a minimum academic qualification of tertiary education Diploma to qualify to hold office.”

A member of the Club who spoke to our correspondent fumed that Chief Jerry Kalu and his committee want to set the Club on fire. “How can they change the goalpost at the middle of the match? How can someone reasonable ever write that a student is already a graduate? What is this club turning into?

“For the General Secretary to have admitted that Greg Okafor has no diploma certificate, that is the end of the road for Greg. But the other issue of them trying to tell us that even though Greg is still a diploma student, he is already qualified for the benefits of certificate holders, is completely irrational and a big mockery to every educated person in this Club.

“It is not every egg that hatches to chick. An egg is therefore different from

a chick. It is not every student that eventually graduates. Even, students who have passed all their papers, cleared themselves and are ready for graduation are still not called graduates. They are called graduands. Unless you are issued with a certificate, you have not graduated from school. This is just like saying that a secondary school student is already a WAEC holder! And diploma is a certificate. Diploma is not proof of admission or admission slip which is the only paper Greg Okafor has today,” he said.

Peeved by the indefensible plan to bring in a non-qualified aspirant in the contest, a presidential aspirant, Barr. Uche Emeagwara, has approached the Aba Judicial Division of the Abia State High Court. In suit no A/263/2021 which has Chief Greg Okwuchukwu Okafor, the Registered Trustees of Aba Sports Club, Chief Jerry Kalu and Amb. Darlington Nwokolo as first to fourth defendants, Emeagwara has asked the court for, among other things, “A declaration that the first defendant (Greg Okafor) is not qualified to contest for the office of President of Aba Sports Club (1926) in the election scheduled for the 1st day of December 2021as he is not qualified to be elected to that office not having the minimum academic qualification from a tertiary educational institution to contest for the position.”

Recall that topnotch report on investigations into the academic records of Greg Okafor had gone viral last week. According to the report, a few years ago, precisely in 2017, obviously in preparation to become the President of Aba Sports Club, Greg Okafor went and registered for NECO examination at St. Michael’s Comprehensive Secondary School, Aba with the registration number 18632794AC and name: Greg Okwuchukwu Okafor. He went ahead to secure admission into Abia State Polytechnic in Aba for an evening program in the 2018/2019 academic session in the department of Business Administration and Management with following application number: ABP/NDP/18/0000015285.

Further, in the first semester of his first year, Greg Okafor failed four courses, namely BAM 111, GNS 101, PUS111 and PAD 111/117. In the second semester, he failed another course, which is GNS 131/112, making it a total of five courses currently left uncleared in school. His second year, which is ND 2, has not yet got any results from the Polytechnic.

So, with five failed courses left to be rewritten and entire second year result left unpublished, the report had concluded authoritatively that Greg Okafor has not obtained an authentic tertiary diploma certificate from Abia State Polytechnic to enable him run for the office of President of Aba Sports Club.

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