By Jide Orintunsin, Abuja and Simon Utebor, Yenagoa

  • Northwest chairmen back committee on register
  • Bayelsa faction faults panel’s reconciliation comment

Director General of Progressive Governors’ Forum (PGF), Salihu Moh’d Lukmam, has said those who oppose the proposed membership registration and update of the register of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) are calling for the emergence of surrogate leadership.

He also faulted those who claimed that the Caretaker/Extra-Ordinary Convention Planning Committee (CECPC) of the party lacks the power to conduct the proposed registration.

The forum’s DG argued that it would be counter-productive to have a National Convention without a verifiable party register.

Some party members and stakeholders are against the proposed registration, saying the caretaker committee lacked the mandate to conduct the exercise.

The opposition to the exercise threatened to take legal action should the committee conduct the membership verification, registration and register update.

Lukman, who was reacting to the tension being generated by the proposed exercise, announced the party’s stand in a statement on Thursday in Abuja.

“When was the last time anybody was registered as APC member in any part of the country? When was the last time any ward in the country transmitted to any local government secretariat and/or local government transmitted any copy to national secretariat? Yet, our party’s constitution provides that membership records should be updated every six months.”

The Northwest state chairmen backed the update of the party’s register.

A statement yesterday in Abuja by the Northwest APC State Chairmen’s Forum, Isa Sadiq Acida, reads: “We, the Northwestern States All Progressives Congress (APC) Chairmen, comprising Sokoto, Kebbi, Zamfara, Katsina, Jigawa, Kano and Kaduna states, wish to express our unflinching support and confidence in the APC National Caretaker/Extraordinary Convention Planning Committee (CECPC), led by Governor Mai Mala Buni of Yobe State.

“We acknowledge and commend the committee’s efforts at repositioning the party…”

Also, a faction of the APC in Bayelsa State, led by Mr. Ebierien Itubor, has debunked the claim by the Buni-led committee that the factions in Bayelsa and a few other states have been reconciled.

In a statement yesterday, Itubor said: “We are not surprised by the claims being made by Yekini Nabena. Nabena is a stooge of Chief Timipre Sylva. It should be known by the National Caretaker Committee that there was never a time any reconciliation meeting was called and the status of the party is that the contentious issues have not been resolved.

“Or, is it that when two or three persons sit in Abuja to discuss party affairs over champagne, the reconciliations have been concluded? The Bayelsa APC is fragmented along factions and these factions are calling on the …reconciliation committee and the Governor Buni-led committee not to allow Sylva-led faction to hoodwink them into false claims and instigate huge failure for the party.”

The Nation