Director General of the Progressives Governors Forum (PGF) and a chieftain of the All Progressives Congress (APC) Salihu Moh. Lukman, has raised an alarm that the ruling party was collapsing with no leader in charge.
The PGF boss, however, called on President Muhammadu Buhari to intervene and ensure urgent National Executive Council (NEC) meeting, to be followed by a national convention.
In statement made available to newsmen Thursday in Abuja, Lukman said “is very clear we need an organ transplant by way of replacing the members of the current NWC who constitute the problem.
“That the All Progressives Congress (APC) is having leadership crisis is no longer news. What is news now is that the party is collapsing with no leader in charge. Following the Appeal Court ruling sustaining the suspension of Comrade Adams Oshiomhole as the National Chairman of the party, late on Monday, June 16, 2020, members of the National Working Committee (NWC) of the party started making disparate claims as to who is the Acting National Chairman. It is as if the party doesn’t have a constitution or those who operate the constitution are either ignorant of its provisions or have decided to set aside the constitution and just embark on a free for all fight. Yet, APC is the ruling party in Nigeria.
“Is it possible for a ruling party in control of the federal government, with President Muhammadu Buhari who is incontestably the moral leader, not to be able to resolve a matter as important as who preside as the National Chairman of the party? How can a party so blessed with experienced and very skillful leaders such as Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, Chief Bisi Akande, Chief Ognonnaya Onu, Chief Tony Momoh, etc. be incapable of resolving the problem of leadership vacancy? With twenty Governors and in control of the National Assembly leadership producing the Senate President and Speaker of the House of Representatives, shouldn’t that serve as a source of strength to be able to solve any leadership dispute in the party, no matter how complex?”
The statement titled “Old Ambition-Virus 2023: Why a meeting of NEC is the solution,” Lukman said the situation APC finds itself is very traumatic for every member.
“By extension, the inability of the party to find solution to the leadership crisis makes it also traumatic for all our leaders including those of them who today serve as the face of the crisis – Comrade Oshiomhole, Chief Eta, Chief Gaidom and their accomplices in and out of the NWC. What makes the situation more frustrating is the reticence of President Buhari in the face of what obviously could damage the legacy he will bequeath to the nation. While, we must celebrate the fact that his leadership style is required to ensure that the party is managed independently and therefore made possible for the exercise of supremacy of the party based on decisions of organs, “old ambition-Virus 2023” may have weakened the capacity of the party to benefit from the commendable leadership approach of President Buhari.
“This is a sad return to all the dastardly known political credentials of the predecessor ruling PDP, which APC is expected to have destroyed. Why should this be happening under the watch of all our leaders who inspiringly led us painstakingly to produce APC and defeat the PDP in 2015? With the manner Sen. Ajimobi is being dragged into being one of the disputants, all APC members and patriotic Nigerians must call our APC leaders to order. In particular, President Buhari and all APC leaders who are vested with the responsibility of assisting President Buhari to move this country forward, should focus in directing the affairs of the party towards convening a NEC meeting to commence the process of curing all our leaders of “old ambition-Virus 2023” as diagnosed by Asiwaju Tinubu in March 2020.
By provisions of our party’s constitution, it is only the National Convention that can discharge that function. And it is only the NEC that can convene the National Convention. Any hesitation not to convene NEC and hopefully activate the process of convening the National Convention could suggest that beyond the NWC, the whole party, APC, is infected with the “old ambition-Virus 2023”, all our leaders, President Buhari and Asiwaju Tinubu inclusive. The first test is whether NEC will be convened or not.
“Beyond President Buhari and Asiwaju Tinubu, our leaders, Vice President, Senate President, Speaker of the House of Representatives, Governors, Asiwaju Tinubu, Chief Akande, Chief Onu, Chief Momoh, etc., all of them individually, should demonstrate the needed sensitivity and commitment to resolving this matter. APC must not be allowed to turn into a Frankenstein monster that will destroy our leaders and pollute our democracy. The capacity of our leaders to resolve this crisis is never in doubt. The issue is how speedily? A stitch in time, saves nine!
“Noting that the PDP was largely plunged into crisis by a garrison styled leadership, which is the direct opposite of President Buhari’s approach, our current crisis may suggest wrongly that having a liberal President who provides free atmosphere to the party is responsible for the crisis facing the party. This will be a very wrong conclusion. However, the question is, what further measures could be required from the President in order to ensure the emergence of a good synergy between him (President Buhari) and the party? What may be apparent is that “old ambition-Virus 2023” sickness afflicting other leaders as diagnosed by Asiwaju Tinubu in March 2020 may block support to the President to resolve the crisis.
This is why all leaders who believe they are not infected by the “old ambition-Virus 2023” should step forward to support President Buhari and protect any further distraction and potential damage to his legacy. To such an extent, one would expect that Asiwaju Tinubu being the Chief Physician of “old ambition-Virus 2023”, as well as being that old politically strong ally of President Buhari, whose partnership assisted in producing the APC and ensuring the defeat of PDP in 2015, he will be in the forefront in activating the moral authority of the combined leadership of President Buhari and Asiwaju Tinubu to resolve the current APC crisis. The combined moral authority of President Buhari and Asiwaju Tinubu should have involuntarily moderated the conduct of other leaders of the party especially members of the NWC.
“Does the current APC leadership crisis therefore suggest declining moral authority of our two leaders? It is very easy to reach conclusions. However, what is of interest to all party members, and by extension other well-meaning Nigerians, is what will be required to re-energise the moral authority of President Buhari and Asiwaju Bola Tinubu and direct it properly to resolve current and future leadership crisis in the party.”
NYSC Issues New Certificate To Obaseki
The National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) has issued a new certificate to Governor Godwin Obaseki of Edo State following an official request by him.
The governor partook in the scheme in 1980 but it turned out there was an error on the certificate issued to him with an alphabet missing in his surname which read Obasek instead of Obaseki.
The All Progressives Congress (APC) panel which screened aspirants for the Edo 2020 primary had cited this error as one of the reasons for disqualifying the governor from the race – a decision which made him defect to the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) where he contested and won the primary.
The coast had earlier been cleared for governor Obaseki’s win after other aspirants running against him stepped down.
One of those who stepped aside for the governor was Kenneth Imasuagbon, who said he was inspired by Obaseki’s performance as the leader of Edo State.
According to him, he has been a “victim of godfatherism” and will help the Edo leader fight anyone who wants to “enslave” the people of the state.
Meanwhile, the National Working Committee of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has appointed the Governor of Rivers State, H. E. Nyesom Wike, as the Chairman for Obaseki’s election campaign council.
The party disclosed this in a statement on Friday.
It also noted that the Adamawa State Governor, Rt. Hon. Ahmadu Fintiri, has been appointed as Deputy Chairman of the council.
The election is expected to hold on September 19.
APC Accuses PDP Of Links With ‘Hushpuppi’, Demands EFCC Investigation
The All Progressives Congress on Saturday said there were links between major opposition party, the Peoples Democratic Party and the US indicted fraudster, Ramon Olorunwa Abbas, also known as ‘Hushpuppi’ and added that those links should be investigated.
In a statement signed by the APC’s Deputy National Publicity Secretary, Yekini Nabena, the APC alleged that there have been reports of “criminal conspiracy linking” top members of the PDP to the disgraced Instagram aficionado.
According to the APC statement, “the PDP leadership turned Dubai into their “Strategic” meeting place ahead of the 2019 general elections in Nigeria, and ‘Hushpuppi’s’ affinity with the PDP leadership is not mere coincidence.
“At different times, “Hushpuppi” was photographed in Dubai meeting with the PDP’s 2019 presidential candidate, Alh. Atiku Abubakar; former Senate President, Bukola Saraki; former Speaker, House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara; Senator Dino Melaye among other PDP stalwarts.”
The APC called on the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to investigate the matter.
“We note that the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has already declared the arraigned Instagram celebrity wanted over fraud allegations,” the APC said. “However, the EFCC, Nigerian Financial Intelligence Unit (NFIU) and other sister agencies must investigate money laundering reports linking some PDP leaders and financiers to the Dubai-based international criminal ring.”
The APC also challenged the PDP to open up on the nature of their relationship with ‘Hushpuppi’.
“In the leadup to the Edo and Ondo governorship elections, we renew our call against monetised elections and vote buying schemes which the PDP has serially deployed in elections,” the statement said. “We call on relevant authorities to up their guard to prevent these practices that threaten the sanctity of our elections. The people’s will and votes should determine elections, not illicit money used to buy votes.”
Hushpuppi, a Dubai resident was arrested last month by UAE security agencies for allegedly conspiring to launder hundreds of millions of dollars from business email compromise (BEC) frauds and other scams, including schemes targeting a U.S. law firm, a foreign bank and an English Premier League club.
Hushpuppi was then extradited to the United States and taken into custody by FBI special agents earlier this week.
If convicted of conspiracy to engage in money laundering, Abbas would face a statutory maximum sentence of 20 years in federal prison.
Criminal Conspiracy Linking “Hushpuppi” With PDP Leadership Should Be Investigated – APC
The ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) has called for an investigation into alleged reports of the criminal conspiracy linking the top echelon of the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) with Ramon Olorunwa Abbas also known as “Ray Hushpuppi” who was recently arrested along with associate(s) in Dubai, United Arab Emirates and extradited to the United States of America to face trial over cyber-enabled fraud and Business Email Compromise (BEC) schemes.
The APC said such report should be a matter of serious interest to relevant authorities in Nigeria.
In a statement signed Saturday in Abuja by its spokesman, Yekini Nabena, the party said that the PDP leadership turned Dubai into their “Strategic” meeting place ahead of the 2019 general elections in Nigeria and “Hushpuppi’s” affinity with the PDP leadership is not mere coincidence.
“We note that the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has already declared the arraigned Instagram celebrity wanted over fraud allegations. However, the EFCC, Nigerian Financial Intelligence Unit (NFIU) and other sister agencies must investigate money laundering reports linking some PDP leaders and financiers to the Dubai-based international criminal ring.
“At different times, “Hushpuppi” was been photographed in Dubai meeting with the PDP’s 2019 presidential candidate, Alh. Atiku Abubakar; former Senate President, Bukola Saraki; former Speaker, House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara; Senator Dino Melaye among other PDP stalwarts.
“While relevant authorities investigate the nature of their relationship and business partnership, we also challenge the PDP leadership to do same by opening up on the nature of the relationship, particularly the kind of services the arrested “Hushpuppi” provided them.”
On the forthcoming Edo and Ondo governorship elections, the APC, however, renewed call against monetised elections and vote buying schemes, alleging that PDP had serially deployed such tactics during elections.
“In the leadup to the Edo and Ondo governorship elections, we renew our call against monetised elections and vote buying schemes which the PDP has serially deployed in elections. We call on relevant authorities to up their guard to prevent this practices that threaten the sanctity of our elections. The people’s will and votes should determine elections, not illicit money used to buy votes.”
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