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Wednesday, January 19, 2022

Division in APC over convention: Governors seek Buhari’s intervention

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Ahead of the 2023 general election, the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) is currently going through a crisis that may torn it apart if not properly manage as the holding on its National convention is causing division among the various blocs within the party.

Already, governors elected under the party have resolved to seek the intervention of President Muhammadu Buhari in the resolution of conflicts arising from preparations for the party’s national convention.

The Progressives Governors’ Forum (PGF), which is currently divided has also resolved to present some options to the President for resolution of the row over the convention.

However, the governors on Tuesday shifted their meeting earlier scheduled for Wednesday till Thursday because President Buhari is on a one-day visit to Ogun State.

PGF Chairman and Kebbi State Governor Atiku Bagudu is said to be urging his colleagues to attend the compulsory meeting.

There is tension between the polarised governors’ forum and the National Caretaker Committee, led by Yobe State Governor Mai Mala Buni, over the postponement of the convention.

While the governors have accused the caretaker committee of lack of commitment on a definite date for the convention, the caretaker panel said the convention was shifted at the instance of some stakeholders, particularly the governors.

In a new twist to the controversy, Senate Chief Whip Orji Kalu reiterated his call for postponement of the convention, saying the proposed February date is not feasible.

A source close to the PGF said the governors would meet with President Buhari after their meeting to discuss their resolution with party leaders.

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The source said: “We are yet to reach any compromise because we are divided on the convention. But we have agreed to collate all opinions or suggestions at our forthcoming meeting and present same to the President for guidance.

“We resolved that immediately after concluding our meeting, we will all leave the venue straight to the Presidential Villa to hold a frank session with the President.

“As the party’s leader, President Muhammadu Buhari will finally make a decision on when the APC convention will hold.”

The source added: “We are not holding the meeting on Wednesday again because of the President’s visit to Ogun State on Thursday, which may make some governors to be absent.

“Governor Bagudu has said that he will want all APC governors to be around so that none will give the excuse of not being part of any decision taken at our meeting. We do not want any governor to complain of imposition.

“We are going to meet after the Presidential visit because we want a full house and a commitment of all members to our resolution.”

On the alleged plot by some members of the APC caretaker committee to remain in office, the source said: “Once the President guides the governors on what to do, they have no choice than to comply.

“We know some CECPC members have no second address. They don’t want to hand over to a democratically-elected National Working Committee (NWC). This is part of the intrigues that have delayed the convening of the convention.”

When contacted, the Director-General of PGF, Salihu Lukman, said: “There is no notice of the governors’ meeting yet.”

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