• Thursday, July 25, 2024
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2023: No force can hijack APC – Ogunleye

2023: No force can hijack APC – Ogunleye

Ahead of the 2023 election, Abiodun Ogunleye, a former deputy governor of Lagos State, has said that it was impossible for any force to hijack the structure of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) because political party needs the contribution and votes of members in all sections of the country for electoral success.

In recent times, there have been increased insinuations that the APC had been hijacked by the ‘Northern caucus’ as an attempt to checkmate the powers of certain individuals in the party.

The caucus was said to be behind the removal of former Edo State governor, Adam Oshiomhole as the national chairman of the party last year and facilitated the emergence of Governor Mai Mala Buni-led caretaker executive committee of the party.

Signs of a deeper crisis in the party further unfolded last week when the first interim national chairman of the party, Bisi Akande, while speaking in his constituency in Ila-orangun, Osun State rubbished the membership registration and revalidation exercise of the party, saying it was unnecessary.

Akande further described the idea of appointing a caretaker committee to lead the party as another abnormality, advising the Buni-led caretaker executive committee of the APC to resist the temptation of staying longer in office than necessary.

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However, speaking in an interview with Businessday, Abiodun, a chieftain of the party in Lagos and pioneer state chairman of the defunct Alliance for Democracy (AD), said he does not believe in such insinuations, adding that the APC was too big for a group of people to hijack.

He said he was rather concerned about the APC settling down to tackle the challenges facing the country.

The former commissioner identified the current presidential system practised in Nigeria as responsible for the nation’ s woes, while advocating for a parliamentary system where whoever should be made minister from the parliament would have been elected.

The octogenarian also advocated for the restructuring of the country, saying that it was long overdue.

According to him, “We have a party. How can one or two people hijack the party? I don’t believe that because APC comprises many people and we need everyone for victory at the poll.

“I am rather concerned about us having a party that would be settled, that would tackle the problems of the country even opposition parties have to be settled to decide what is good and not for Nigeria.

“Left for me, I don’t want a presidential system; I want a parliamentary system; where you don’t pack people who have not contested election to be minister. If they contest they would know. I have said over time that restructuring is overdue in Nigeria; look at what is happening; arm robberies, herdsmen killings, and banditry, atrocities across the country.”