As the crisis in the ruling All Progressive Congress (APC) continues to elicit reactions, a council of elders in the party from the southwest has said it would not recognize Governor Abubakar Bello of Niger State as the National Chairman.
The group, under the aegis of APC Elder’s Council (South West), in a statement on Tuesday, categorically declared that Governor Mai Mala Buni of Yobe State remained the chairman of the Caretaker Extraordinary Convention Planning Committee (CECPC) of the party.
A former House of Representatives Member from Oyo State, Lateef Ali, who signed the statement on behalf of the group also warned that any other person laying claims to Gov. Buni’s position is a usurper, who would be challenged in a court of law with the prospect of being disgraced.
Read the full statement here:
“The All Progressive Congress (APC) Elders’ Council (South-West) is compelled to make its intervention known to the world on the lingering issues in the party and categorically declare that His Excellency, Mai Mala Buni, Governor of Yobe State remains the chairman of the Caretaker Extraordinary Convention Planning Committee (CECPC) of the APC.
Our assertion became imperative to forestall further confusion as to who the chairman of the CECPC is, which requires that we responsibly play our role as elders who must not allow things to go irretrievably bad before speaking out.
We advise that the circumstances that saw His Excellency, Abubakar Sani Bello, Governor of Niger State preside over a CECPC meeting must be properly situated and viewed from the right context. The facts have been sufficiently proven that Governor Bello only stood in for Governor Buni in the absence of any other senior member of the committee to do so.
The APC Elders’ Council is mindful of the news report that said President Muhammadu Buhari has approved the removal of Buni and his replacement with Governor Bello, which we consider speculative as there has been nothing to prove that president Buhari ordered such an illegal swap.
While we have nothing against Governor Buni ceasing to be the CECPC Chairman, we, however, insist that due process must be followed in removing him or any member of the committee from office or dissolving the committee.
We urge those that are hellbent on removing the CECPC chairman to carefully ruminate over the consequences of such an ill-advised move at a time when the APC can barely meet up with the timelines of electoral activities announced by INEC.
It is, therefore, crucial to warn at this stage that for us in the APC Elders Council (South-West), Governor Buni remains the Chairman of the CECPC and that any other person laying claim to his position is a usurper, who would be challenged in a court of law with the prospect of being disgraced.
We appeal to APC stakeholders to allow reason to prevail at this very sensitive stage in the months before the General Election so that the party does not end up becoming a victim of “own goal” given the war some members are waging against the party’s leadership in their selfish bid to remove Governor Buni as CECPC chairman”.