WARD CONGRESSES: APC RECEIVES PETITION FROM 14 STATES

From Jide Orintunsin, Abuja

Petitions protesting the outcome of ward congresses have been filed from 14 states for consideration by the national caretaker of All Progressives Congress (APC).

Twelve state chapters are yet to submit reports of the congresses to the Mai Mala Buni-led National Caretaker Committee, three weeks after.

There is concern in the ruling party that the non-conclusion of congresses may affect announcement of dates for local government and state congresses.

The dates may not be released, until reports of the ward congress appeal panels are submitted to the national secretariat.

Also yesterday, former National Chairman Comrade Adams Oshiomhole said he has no plan to return to his former position in the party.

As at the time of inaugurating Appeal Panel Committees for the ward congress yesterday, only 21 of the 33 states where the congress held had submitted reports. They Ward congresses were held on July 31. Congress did not hold in Anambra, Bayelsa and Zamfara states.

The Nation gathered that the national secretariat received petitions from, Akwa Ibom, Enugu, Niger, Kwara, Ekiti, Osun, and Kano among other states

The Chairmen and Secretaries of the five-man Appeal Panel Committee for each of the 33 states and Federal Capital Territory (FCT) were inaugurated by the Chairman of CECPC, Yobe State Mai Mala Buni at the party secretariat in Abuja.

The inauguration of the Appeal Panels came five days after the committee was scheduled to have completed the assignment. The earlier timeline and schedule for the Ward Congress Appeal Panel Committee was to have been between August 1 and 7.

Addressing the committee members, the CECPC Secretary, Senator Akpanudoedehe, who stood in for the Chairman, said: “The outcome of the committee’s report will determine when we are going to fix the date for Local Government and State Congresses.

“It is trite to note that, the Congresses to produce our party organs across had commenced on the 31st of July, 2021 and you will agree with me that it went substantially well.

“However, it is expected that whereever and whenever there’s a competition, of course, there is bound to be contestations.

“Therefore, as an organisation based on rules and procedures, avenues and channels must be provided for party members who are dissatisfied with the processes, to ventilate their grievances through an internal mechanism, hence this Wards Congresses Appeals Committee in the circumstance of this exercise.

“This party is for all Nigerians, therefore we must show, not only by words but by concrete actions that there’s no attempt to exclude or sideline anybody in the course of the exercise. This is very fundamental, not only to the Caretaker Extraordinary Convention Planning Committee but to the preservation of the very essence of the party.”

Akpanudoedehe added: “The chairman had directed that I remind all party members that this is a family affair, hence differences should be handled with the understanding that no dispute is worth the destruction of the house you jointly erected.

“The party’s guidelines for the exercise and the constitution shall be your guide. The terms of reference shall be made available hereafter.”

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