Indications that the internal conflict rocking the All Progressives Congress (APC), which led to the emergence of Governor Mai Mala Buni of Yobe State led caretaker committee, was not over yet, emerged Thursday, when 27 leaders of the party, under the umbrella of the ‘new cabal’ met with a selected members of the committee in Abuja and concluded on extending their tenure till April.
The meeting was said to have been attended by members from almost all the geo-political zones, with former Governor of Ogun State, Senator Ibikunle Amosun, as South West representative.
AbujaCityJournal investigation revealed that some of the resolutions at the meeting, which was held at the private residence of the Attorney General of the Federation, Shehu Malami, were; extension of the tenure of the caretaker committee till April, 2021, commencement of a jealously guided party registration that would take care of the ‘new cabal’ presidential interest, whittling down of Tinubu’s grip of the party’s structure and possible resignation of Buni as Governor and subsequent emergence as party chairman, among others.
A mild drama however ensued at the meeting when one of the conveners suggested that those in attendance should swear to an oath to prevent information from the meeting from being revealed to other leaders of the party.
The suggestion was however turned down by a few members, who dismissed it as ‘immature and petty’.
Meanwhile, following receiving signals from the secret meeting, another set of APC members known as ‘APC Concerned Members Forum’ have warned Buni led committee not to attempt to elongate its tenure in office beyond December and should stop the proposed membership registration.
The Concerned APC Members, stated in a statement signed by one of the 2019 Gubernatorial Aspirants from Benue State, Ogenyi Okpokwu, that they supported the move to dissolve Comrade Adams Oshiomhole led executive council after discovered that it lacked capacity to listen to opposing views within the party, internal democracy and listen to advise from members.
The group indicated that they were part of the court processes and movement, leading the major Protest that led to the sack of Comrade Oshiohmole’s National Working Committee and that their expectation was for the present Caretaker Committee to resolve the internal crises within the Party, conduct Convention and handover to the duly elected National working Committee of the APC after the expiration of the six months mandate given by the National Executive Committee, NEC.
“As loyal party members, even though the composition of the Caretaker Committee was at variance with section 17 (4) of our party’s constitution which states “nobody can hold Executive Position at the same time with Party Position” The party’s National Executive Council breached this same constitution with the imposition of Mai Mala Buni led Caretaker Committee. Remember the word Caretaker is not known to our constitution.
“We obeyed the resolution of the NEC meeting as directed by our leader President Muhammadu Buhari after they made the two-resolutions public, which is to reconcile party members in various states of the federation and conduct convention in December 2020. But we were shocked when we read it in the newspapers this Thursday that the Caretaker Committee is embarking on new membership registration.
This is outright fraud! How can a Party that have existed for over seven years commence a new registration instead of updating the existing register.
It is now clear that the intention is to divert ₦1.5 billion the committee has budgeted for the same exercise without procurement process.
The Committee is also planning the dissolution of all Wards, LGA and State Excos and conduct new congresses even though their tenures will not expire till two (2) years’ time, this is must be resisted by all Party members,” the statement stated.
As to the committee’s claims of having finished reconciliation in Ekiti and some other states, the forum said the public should know that Buni and his co-travellers have further encouraged crisis in those state chapters than solving problems inherited.
In particular, the forum made reference to Zamfara where it said Senator Kabir Marafa recently exposed the committee’s lies in a statement.
According to them, Marafa declared that the Buni Committee lied and that the two factions in the state are still very much alive each with its secretariat in operations, likewise in Ekiti Rivers and other states.
The forum was quick to remind the CTC that National Executive Committee (NEC) resolution did not give them such powers to begin new registration of members because none of them were elected without party membership cards.
Are Governors Buni, Oyetola,Bello and other members of CTC no longer card carrying members of the party that we now want to give them new membership cards? the statement asked.
Driving home their points, the forum now table their demands to include;
- The Caretaker Committee should begin the process of convening the National Convention in December with immediate effect
- All the permanent party membership cards that were printed and submitted to the party’s National Secretariat by APC Data Center for onward distribution to our members in the Wards, LGA and States should be distributed immediately. In case they cannot find it; they should request for it at our data center.
- The incoming National Working Committee should handle the updating of new register if we so need to update one.
- If our demands are not met, we will have no option than to approach the courts for interpretation of our constitution as it was done before you came onboard and we will occupy our secretariats. The party belongs to us all.
- The most senior member of sacked Oshiohmole led NWC should be returned as Chairman because that is what our party constitution says.
- We call on State Chairmen of the parties not to join the illegal registration because is tailored for your removal from office in the long run
The steps of Buni led Caretaker Committee has further left no one in doubt that the committee has lost foothold in the discharge of its duties as unbiased umpires and now interested in squandering the 3.9 Billion Naira left in the Party’s purse which has been depleted daily.
Lastly, we the Concerned APC members call on President Muhammadu Buhari to Call to order the Caretaker Committee before they destroy the image and the goodwill of our great party due to their selfish interests and tenure elongation plot. We will not sit back and allow this to happen to our beloved.