The ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) is in the throes of a crisis, two months into the tenure of the party’s current hierarchy.
The APC National Vice Chairman, North West, Salihu Mohd Lukman, is accusing the National Chairman, Senator Abdullahi Adamu, of running the party as a sole administrator, taking decisions without reckoning with other party officials.
Lukman, in a May 27, 2022 letter to Adamu sighted by The Tide source urged caution to save the party from crashing.
“Under your leadership, the current NWC is gradually snowballing into similar circumstances whereby decisions taken are allowed to lay bare and, in some instances, changed without necessarily taking needed steps to carry members along,” Lukman said.
He also said Adamu had been dropping President Muhammadu Buhari’s name as the sole determinant of crucial activities in the party.
This approach, he said, is only unfair to the President.
Lukman said: “I find it necessary to send this letter to further appeal to you to review our approaches under the current National Working Committee (NWC) under your leadership.
“It is now two months since we came into office and you have so far raised a lot of expectations given that some of the problems, which undermined the support base of previous leadership, would appear to have been minimised.
“For instance, meetings of the NWC are now held almost every week. Members participate actively and where necessary engage and contest issues.
“It is to your credit that you accept the positions of members even when you disagree. This is a remarkable departure from what obtained in the past where the National Chairman conducts meetings of party organs as Chief Executive and to that extent, therefore, exercises prerogatives and overrules members.
“The big challenge is ensuring that decisions taken are faithfully implemented. The inability of previous leaderships under His Excellency Adams Oshiomhole and His Excellency Mai Mala Buni to implement decisions taken were partly responsible for the leadership crisis that confronted the party.
“Under your leadership, the current NWC is gradually snowballing into similar circumstances whereby decisions taken are allowed to lay bare and, in some instances, changed without necessarily taking needed steps to carry members along.
“No doubt, given all the challenges inherited and coming at a time when it’s extremely difficult to control events and almost everything would appear to have been set against the party and its leadership, we need to take every measure to avoid past pitfalls.”
Cautioning the National Chairman to avoid taking unilateral decisions, Lukman referred to the setting up of the transition committee to take stock of what the NWC inherited as a singular initiative.
His words: “Perhaps it is important to acknowledge that, as National Chairman, you have raised the expectations of many of us in the NWC, and by extension many party leaders.
“For instance, the whole idea of setting up a transition committee, which took stock of what we have inherited, was your singular initiative.
“The report of the committee was, to say the least, very shocking. Apart from the fact that there were more than 200 employees in the party’s National Secretariat, most of who (were) without valid letters of employment, there were no standardized conditions of service.
“Statutory requirements for taxations, pensions and insurance benefits as provided by relevant labour laws are not being respected. There were claims by legal firms about liability owed for legal cases handled without valid contracts.
“All these were partly responsible for why many of the party’s bank accounts were blocked by subsisting court judgments, most of which copies are not available at the National Secretariat, which with your guidance the Party’s Legal Department can resolve.
“Partly based on your recommendations and insistence to reform the Secretariat, the NWC decided to send all the Directors on leave pending the outcome of our investigation.
“It is clear to every discerning member of the NWC that many of the Directors, if not all, would have to go. It is also clear that apart from the Directors, many workers in the Secretariat should go.
“However, important and laudable as these decisions would appear to be, is inadequate if it is not matched with initiatives to standardise operational practices in the National Secretariat, especially in terms of ensuring that employment requirement conforms with extant labour laws.
“As the ruling party, this must be guaranteed.”
The National Vice-Chairman expressed disappointment that decision on the reform of the Secretariat has been suspended, saying: “As things are, we have suspended every initiative to reform the Secretariat, understandably so given all the challenges of meeting deadlines for electing party candidates for 2023 general elections.
“The danger is that what we inherited will soon become the accepted practice and new Directors and workers would be employed without any commitment to meeting provisions of the law concerning employment standards.”
He also frowned at the casual approach of the NWC in handling critical affairs of the party.
“The case of appointing Screening, Primary and Convention Committees is a good example,” he said.
“Again, although with your prompting a committee was set up under the leadership of Deputy National Chairman (North), Sen. Abubakar Kyari, with the task of managing all the processes, eventually the committee was unable to discharge its function.
“Partly because of that, for instance, although the National Convention to elect the party’s Presidential Candidate is scheduled for May 29 and 30, less than 48 hours, we are yet to have a Convention Committee in place.
“The Presidential aspirants are yet to be screened. The official explanation is that you are awaiting final consultation with President Buhari.
“At the risk of sounding agitated, this is unfair to President Buhari because, to the best of my understanding, it is an attempt to use the President’s name to give excuses for failure if it happens, which should not be the case.
“As NWC and as our leader being the National Chairman, I want to appeal to you on the need for new initiatives in managing the party.
“At the rate we are going, we are walking back to the old spot of over-centralised implementation of party decisions around the National Chairman.
“Increasingly, critical challenges of managing important tasks, such as organising the National Convention to produce the Presidential Candidate of the party, are being handled informally. This should not be so, and everything must be done to correct that.
“Finally, the issue of conditions of party leaders, including the NWC members is completely left unattended. The official excuse is that you requested a budget.
“Consequently, after two months now in office, no decision has been taken to pay members of the NWC. The specific details of entitlements of NWC members are being reduced to speculations. This is very unhealthy and should be corrected.
“Partly this is giving legitimacy to many unethical practices, which would appear to be influencing some members of the NWC.
“Your Excellency, I wanted to meet you to discuss these matters. Unfortunately, it has proved difficult, and I feel very strongly about these matters.
“I hope that you will be able to prioritise developing good relationships with individual members of the NWC to accommodate our perspectives in handling the task of rebuilding our party, APC.
“I am confident that Your Excellency will be able to provide the needed leadership to rebuild our party, APC.”
Court Restrains Oyo Assembly From Impeaching Makinde’s Deputy
The Oyo State High Court presided over by Justice Oladiran Akintola on Wednesday restrained the House of Assembly from further continuing with the impeachment process against the Deputy Governor, Engr. Raufu Olaniyan.
According to the court, the status quo must be maintained, pending the hearing of the application for interlocutory injunction before it.
The House of Assembly was billed to read Olaniyan’s reply to their allegation on Wednesday morning but the court placed hold on further process regarding the impeachment. The court adjourned the matter till Tuesday, July 5, 2022 for continuation of hearing.
The adjournment was to allow the Assembly to file its reply to that of Olaniyan at the court. Director of Legal Services, Olabanji, represented the Assembly, while Chief Afolabi Fashanu (SAN), led Olaniyan’s legal team.
Olaniyan had dragged the parties to court to seek an injunction to stop what he described as “faulty process” of his impeachment.
Twenty-three lawmakers, who are members of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), had earlier accused the deputy governor of gross misconduct, abuse of office, financial recklessness, among other allegations.
In a petition entitled, ‘Petition and Notice of Allegations against the Deputy Governor of Oyo State, His Excellency Engineer Rauf Olaniyan’, he was accused of gross misconduct, abuse of office, financial recklessness, abandonment of office and official duties and insubordination.
“This is in accordance with section 188 of the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended)”, the petition read in part.
The lawmakers gave the deputy governor seven days to respond to the allegations.
The lawmakers who signed the petition included: Fadeyi Muhammed (Ona Ara), Onaolapo Sanjo (Ogbomosho South), Babalola Olasunkanmi (Egbeda), Adebisi Yussuf (Ibadan South-West I), Okedoyin Julius (Saki West), and Adebayo Babajide (Ibadan North II).
Others were: Kehinde Olatunde (Akinyele II), Olajide Akintunde (Lagelu), Mustapha Akeem (Kajola), Popoola Ademola (Ibadan South-East II), Owolabi Olusola (Ibadan North-East II), Olayanji Kazeem (Irepo/Olorunsogo) and Ojedokun Peter (Ibarapa North).
The remaining lawmakers were: Dele Adeola (Iseyin, Itesiwaju) Gbadamosi Saminu (Saki East/Atisbo), Mabaje Adekunle (Ido), Oluwafowokanmi Oluwafemi (Ibadan South-West II), Akeem Adedibu (Iwajowa), Fatokun Ayo (Akinyele I), Rasak Ademola (Ibadan South-East I), Obadara Akeem (Ibadan North-West), Oyekunle Fola (Ibadan North I) and Adetunji Francis (Oluyole).
Lawyers Ask Court To Disqualify Atiku, Tinubu, Obi Over Running Mates
Three lawyers have filed a suit before the Federal High Court in Abuja, seeking the disqualification of Bola Tinubu, Atiku Abubakar and Peter Obi, as presidential candidates.
The plaintiffs want the court to issue an order restraining the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) from recognising Tinubu, Abubakar and Obi as presidential candidates of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and Labour Party (LP), respectively, in the 2023 elections.
According to the motion filed on Wednesday, the plaintiffs said the presidential candidates breached laws guiding the process for election by contesting their parties’ tickets without running mates.
In the suit dated June 29, the plaintiffs — identified as Ataguba Aboje, Oghenovo Otemu and Ahmed Yusuf — said the decision of the presidential candidates to contest the primaries without running mates, goes contrary to the constitution.
INEC, the attorney-general of the federation (AGF), APC, PDP and LP are listed as first to fifth defendants, respectively.
In the suit marked: FHC/ABJ/CS/1004/2022, the plaintiffs want the court to determine whether the constitutional qualification for the office of the president is equally applicable to the office of the vice-president.
PDP Govs Boycott Osun Campaign Council Inauguration As VP Slot Crisis Rages
Only two out of the 13 governors of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) were present at the inauguration of the party’s campaign council for Osun State governorship election.
Although all the governors were listed as members of the campaign council, only Governors Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta and Ishaku Darius of Taraba State attended the event held at the party’s national secretariat in Abuja.
National chairman, Dr Iyorchia Ayu and the party’s presidential candidate, former Vice President Atiku Abubakar, were also absent, but their absence was however unavoidable, as Atiku is currently in Dubai where he had travelled to some days earlier, while Ayu is on a two-week vacation.
The absence of the PDP governors comes amid concerns about frictions within the party over the way the choice of the presidential running mate was handled.
Atiku had settled for Delta State governor, Sen-Ifeanyi Okowa, despite Governor Nyesom Wike’s emergence as the candidate of a 17-member advisory committee.
Although efforts are being made to appease Wike over the matter, the Rivers State governor, who is in Turkey for vacation with his Abia State counterpart, Okezie Ikpeazu, had played host to leaders of opposition parties, fueling insinuations that he might dump PDP.
While Benue State governor Samuel Ortom was a guest on Arise TV from his state, other governors who were absent did not give any explanation for their absence.
Speaking at the inauguration, Okowa who admitted that there was so much work to be done ahead of the Osun election, said, “Osun state obviously is a PDP states. We have great leaders who have a very clear understanding of the politics in that states.
“I want to urge all our leaders and our followers in the state to please quickly bridge the gaps of divide that is amongst us, because victory stares us right in the face, God has gone ahead of us. It is for us to follow the wish of God and to deliver the state to the PDP.
“There is a lot of work to be done. It is not a fun fare, And I believe that the membership of the campaign counselors inaugurated today are capable enough to truly go out there to deliver the state to the PDP
“ I want to make an appeal to the campaign Council. It is not about being inaugurated in Abuja. The work to be done is in Osun state.
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