• Monday, June 24, 2024
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APC chieftain faults party’s campaign for Edo governorship election

A chieftain of the All Progressive Congress (APC), Salihu Lukman, has faulted the party’s campaign approach ahead of Edo State governorship election slated for September 19.

Lukman also called on the Governor Mai-Mala Buni-led Caretaker/Convention Working Committee of the party to convene a National Executive Committee (NEC) meeting to consider and approve its proposed activities for the Extra Ordinary National Convention which is expected to hold before the end of this year.

He lamented that everybody in the APC is being blackmailed to accept the way the Edo 2020 governorship campaign is being organised as the best way to win the election under the control of the former National Chairman, Adams Oshiomhole.

“This is wrong and in the long run it will be injurious to the electoral viability of the party. The issue of Edo election and its management therefore needs to be reviewed by our party,” Lukman said.

“Unfortunately, given the way that the Edo State Governorship campaign has become a tool of blackmail in the hands of Comrade Oshiomhole, even internal party consultations to roll out initiatives towards moving the party forward seems to be slow.

“In the circumstance, the old crisis of leadership has continued to hunt our leaders, and everyone is forced to continue operating with the old mindset, with no end in sight.

“This is most unfortunate and a complete disservice to the effort of President Buhari to broker resolution of the leadership crisis facing the party,” he said.

Lukman, who is the director-general of Progressives Governors Forum (PGF), also urged the Committee to convene a dedicated session of the National Caucus to review 2019 General Election, including Kogi, Bayelsa elections and the preparations for Edo and Ondo governorship elections.

He asked the Caretaker leadership to commence the processes of Membership Recruitment/Verification, leading to Reformation of Leadership of the party from Wards, Local Government, States to the Extra Ordinary National Convention.

Lukman who made these demands in a submission to the Caretaker Committee on Wednesday called for setting up of a Constitutional Review/Amendment Committee, which should be able to submit proposals for review/amendment of the APC constitution.

He further asked the Caretaker Committee to encourage internal debate without intimidating members who hold divergent/dissenting views from those held by leaders, stressing that leaders should be accommodating to criticism.

Lukman said: “These are very important steps that will assist to reposition the party, so that everything is not reduced to just about electing new leadership. In the unfortunate event that everything is reduced to just electing new leadership, there will be the high probability that the party will gradually snowball into another round of leadership crisis especially as we move towards 2023.

“In fact, the business of the forthcoming Extra Ordinary National Convention risks being marred with leadership dispute as the high current of 2023, which is already rearing its heads in the debate around initiatives which should drive processes leading to Extra Ordinary Convention could undermine any attempt at consensus building leading to the emergence of the new leadership. Once efforts toward consensus building failed, the possibility of failed contest and new rounds of conflict should be expected.”

The PGF Director-General stated that part of the objectives of activities of the Caretaker/Convention Working Committee in the build up to the Extra Ordinary National Convention is to look at all the fault-lines in the party, which are the causes of leadership crisis, especially when elections are approaching.

Others according to him are: “Examining in the context of those fault-lines, how to broker minimum leadership consensus.

“Urgently engendering commitment of party leaders at all levels to implement measures to strengthen mechanisms to make structures of the party functional and effective in considering and resolving internal leadership disputes; and

“Examining the conflict and resolution mechanisms within our party and to develop a programme that improves on the current dispute resolution processes”.

Lukman stressed that the fundamental essence of initiatives for reconciliation and peace building in APC is to create an atmosphere that enables the party to engage in critical review of its effort at party building and cohesion.

“Accordingly, Caretaker/Convention Working Committee’s initiative towards reconciliation and peace building will be required to involve wider spectrum of critical stakeholders in the APC leadership at various strata of the party for the purposes of a much more cohesiveness and sustainable resolution of all the leadership challenges facing the party”, he noted.