Insists on conduct of convention in June
Director General of Progressive Governors Forum (PGF), Dr. Salihu Lukman, has slammed Governor Mai Mala Buni-led caretaker committee of the All Progressives Congress (APC) over the extension of the party’s membership registration and revalidation exercise.
The exercise scheduled to end on March 31, 2021 was last week extended by three weeks by the caretaker committee whose tenure in office expires in June this year.
Lukman is of the opinion that the committee would not organise a national convention where new leaders of the party are to be elected before the end of the year, alleging refusal by the Buni panel to convene statutory meetings of APC, apart from the emergency National Executive Council (NEC) meeting held at the Presidential Villa on December 8, 2020.
The PGF boss, in a statement titled “APC’s Litmus Tests,” said the development indicated that the party was being denied wider participation of its members in the decision making process as was the case before the dissolution of the Adams Oshiomhole-led NEC in June last year.
Lukman, who warned against tenure extension for the Buni-led committee, canvassed setting up of committees for the conduct of congresses and national convention without any further delay.
He advised that the national convention of the party be conducted in June this year in line with the mandate of the caretaker panel.
“To what extent has the APC caretaker committee distinguished itself from the old characteristics of managing the affairs of the party without meetings of organs as provided in the constitution? This is the fundamental operational question, which, however considered, would have implication in terms of whether APC leaders are taking the necessary steps to rebuild the party based on any considered vision of progressive politics.
“Part of the indication is that most decisions taken by the caretaker committee were done by the chairman, Buni, and the Secretary, Senator James Akpanudoedehe. The good thing is that the major challenge of ensuring that the party is able to have a verifiable membership register is being resolved.
“But without organs meeting as provided in the constitution of the party, where progress reports are given, what is the guarantee that the old problem of having inaccessible membership register will not be replicated.
“Already, given that the party’s membership registration/revalidation exercise was done based on the old analogue method without applying modern virtual technology, what is the guarantee that the process of leadership reformation in the party, from ward congresses up to national convention, will be done based on the new register? Will all members of the party be able to participate in the process of electing leaders of the party at all levels?
“The test of whether the process of candidates’ selection for election will accommodate broader participation of members of the party is the extent to which all members of the party participate in the election of leaders. Once election of leaders is handled by a few delegates, it is almost logical that it will be a few delegates that will elect standard bearers of the party for elections,” Lukman explained.
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