New National Working Committee: APC inaugurates appeal panel on Tuesday

The All Progressives Congress will tomorrow (Tuesday) inaugurate an appeals committee to address any disagreements arising from its national convention.

This is just as The PUNCH learnt that the Senate would declare the seat of the Nasarawa West Senatorial District lawmaker, Senator Abdullahi Adamu, vacant after he emerged as the new National Chairman of the APC. The Independent National Electoral Commission is expected to conduct a by-election to replace him.

The APC adopted the consensus method to elect 77 party leaders on Sunday out of which 21 will be members of the National Working Committee.

The PUNCH reports that most of the important positions, including the national chairman, deputy national chairmen, national secretary and national youth leader, were filled through consensus.

The APC governors compiled a list of candidates for all positions and subsequently mandated all those whose names were not on the list to step down in line with the wishes of the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.).

The party promised to refund the money that the aspirants, who stepped down, spent on purchasing forms. However, a few aspirants refused and opted for elections instead.

An aide to one of the chairmanship aspirants, who wished to remain anonymous, said the APC had not yet set in motion the procedures for refund.

“The party has promised to refund N20m to each of the chairmanship aspirants to step down. I know it is still too soon since the convention just ended. So, we are waiting for the refund,” he said.

On whether his principal would be approaching the appeals committee to seek redress, the aide to the aspirant said, “We all stepped down although it was clear intimidation. It was even worse for those seeking other offices. They only got to know about the unity list a few hours before the convention.

“Then various party leaders, including ministers and governors, started insisting that they should step down in the spirit of unity and in line with the President’s wishes. There is really no point appealing anything.”

After the President inaugurated the new leadership of the party at the Eagle Square, the new Chairman of the APC, Adamu, promised to heal the wounds in the party.

“I promise you here and now that we shall heal any wound in our party; we shall effect lasting reconciliation among our members; and we shall go into the next general elections as a strong and united party. I offer my hands of friendship to all our members. I want to assure you that my colleagues and I will operate an open-door policy for all members of the party,” he stated.

Adamu, who headed the party’s reconciliation sub-committee before taking up his new position, said the opposition Peoples Democratic Party must be sad over the successful convention.

He advised party members to try to solve internal frictions within the party, adding that when such conflicts were made public, that would allow the opposition to exploit the situation.

Adamu stated, “As we conclude this very successful convention of our great party, I know that our opponents in the PDP and other opposition parties are now sulking, wearing long faces of sadness, bewilderment and dismay. They had been hoping and praying to make a fortune out of our misfortunes. They were also hoping and praying to capitalise on assumed failures of our party to reap political benefits.

“We must resist the temptation to blow every minor personal disagreement into a major party crisis. It is time for us to do things differently. When we quarrel, we open our flanks to our rival political parties that are only too eager to exploit them for their own benefit.”

Also, Governor Abdullahi Ganduje of Kano State, on Sunday, attributed the successful conduct of the national convention of the APC to the consensus arrangement with strict adherence to Buhari’s directive.

“It is also a great success if you look at the procedures followed in order to come up with this exercise. I know you are aware that President Muhammadu Buhari had advised us to embrace the consensus arrangement,” he said.

To effectively comply with the President’s advice, the governor said, “We undertook a lot of consensus in this exercise.”

He explained that in areas where consensus did not work, “we resorted to election, complying with the procedures for election.”

In a statement, Abba Anwar, the Chief Press Secretary to the Governor, quoted Ganduje as expressing appreciation that at the end of the convention, two things were achieved: “We have come up with a new brand of leadership. And secondly, this exercise has made us more united and stronger. And we are sure we are equal to the task.”

Meanwhile, a group campaigning for a former governor of Lagos State, Bola Tinubu, to become President, the Asiwaju Project Beyond 2023, has congratulated members of the new National Working Committee of the APC.

The National Director of Media and Publicity of the group, Mr Adeboye Adebayo, in a statement issued on Sunday described the endorsed party leaders as “round pegs in round holes of the APC.”

Adebayo expressed confidence that the NWC would take the party to an enviable height.

Omisore will take APC to greater heights, says Oyetola

While congratulating the new NWC, Osun State Governor, Adegboyega Oyetola, expressed confidence in Adamu and the new secretary, Omisore, to manage the affairs of the party.

A statement made available in Osogbo on Sunday by the Chief Press Secretary to the Governor, Ismail Omipidan, said Oyetola spoke to journalists at the venue of the APC convention in Abuja.

The governor, who commended South-West leaders of the APC for supporting Omisore, also thanked other contestants for accepting to withdraw from the race and expressed confidence in the capacity of the ex-Osun State deputy governor to deliver and take the party to greater heights.

According to him, the peaceful conduct of the convention was a testimony to the strong unity that exists in the APC and an attestation to the fact that the ruling party has its ways of resolving issues without necessarily resorting to conflict.

Oyetola was quoted as saying, “First of all, I must thank our leaders in the South-West for their support for our own Senator Iyiola Omisore. This is a great thing for us in the Osun APC and I must thank other contestants for conceding and accepting to withdraw from the race.

“I commend them for the bold step just as I assure them of our support in their time of need. I have no doubt in the capacity of Otunba Omisore to deliver and take our party to greater levels.”

Fayemi, Lawan hail new APC NWC

Ekiti State Governor and Chairman, Nigeria Governors’ Forum, Dr Kayode Fayemi, said on Sunday that the newly elected national executive members of the APC would make a huge success of their assignment.

Fayemi urged the new APC leaders to hit the ground running by reaching out to aggrieved party members and running an inclusive administration.

The Chief Press Secretary to the Governor, Yinka Oyebode, in a statement titled, ‘Fayemi congratulates newly elected APC national officers’, said the governor, who spoke shortly after the new executive members were inaugurated, hailed their emergence at the just concluded national convention in Abuja.

The governor also lauded the National Caretaker Committee headed by Yobe State Governor, Mai Mala Buni, for organising a successful national convention, which he said was aimed at further strengthening the party ahead of the 2023 general elections, in addition to holding the party together for almost two years.

“I have no doubt that they (new executive members) will make a success of the task, giving their pedigree as very resourceful men and women of proven integrity, ability and capacity,” Fayemi said.

He, however, urged the new national officers “to look beyond the various opposition expressed by individuals or groups to their aspirations ahead of the convention,” saying such was normal in any democratic setting.

Also, Senate President Ahmad Lawan, congratulated the new APC chairman, who is a serving senator.

In a statement on Sunday by the Special Adviser on Media to President of the Senate, Ola Awoniyi, Lawan said Adamu’s victory at the national convention of the APC was a testimony to the tremendous respect that the former governor turned lawmaker enjoys across the polity “for his integrity, experience and leadership capacity.”

The statement was titled, ‘Senate President congratulates Senator Abdullahi Adamu as new APC Chair’.

The statement read in part, “The emergence of Senator Adamu and his great team from a rancour-free convention has drawn the envies of our rivals and sent jitters down their spines. That is unavoidable, given the status of the APC in the Nigerian polity and the warm place it has occupied in the hearts of Nigerians since its formation and assumption of national governance.

“I commend all the aspirants, whose sacrifices, cooperation and abiding love for the party, provided the environment and impetus for the attainment of consensus in the leadership selection process at the convention.”

PDP mocks APC, says new chair battling corruption case

But the PDP mocked the ruling party over the convention, insisting that its new chairman was still battling a corruption case.

The National Publicity Secretary of the APC, Debo Ologunagba, said the APC simply imposed candidates under the pretext of a convention.

The statement read in part, “The PDP mocks the APC over the imposition of Senator Abdullahi Adamu, a man who was arraigned on 149 counts of alleged fraudulent award of contracts and stealing of public funds estimated at N15bn, as its national chairman.

“The PDP describes the APC jamboree in the name of a national convention as a convention of lies, celebration of illegality, corruption and arrogance in failure, adding that any leadership birthed through such a process can only be overtly corrupt, debauched and illegal.

“It is clear that with the combination of the corrupt, deceitful and rudderless Buhari-led APC government and the illegitimate Abdullahi Adamu-led party leadership, corruption, economic hardship and rudderless in the APC government will worsen in our country in the remaining one year of the APC in government.”

The opposition party said the composition of the APC national leadership was a clear confirmation that Buhari had never been committed to the fight against corruption as well as his willingness to further open the national vault to ravenous treasury looters in the APC.

The PDP challenged members of the “illegitimate APC national leadership,” particularly Adamu, to come clean on corruption charges against them.

“The new APC chairman should inform Nigerians why he was not courageous enough to submit himself to trial at the Federal High Court, Lafia, Nasarawa State, rather than hide under technicalities. Senator Adamu should, therefore, come clean to Nigerians on the said case before parading himself as a saint,” the PDP added.

The opposition party cautioned aspirants intending to participate in the 2023 general elections under the APC to note that they were on a journey to nowhere with the ruling party.    ,,

Copyright PUNCH.

Please Share This

We can help you create and promote standard contents across the internet/other media in Nigeria and beyond. Call/Whatsapp +2348038704454 or follow on Twitter/IG/FB @OtownGist and @HardyNwa