Politics

APC: Group calls on members to boycott Feb 26 convention

says few emperors can't dictate to majority over date

More stakeholders in the All Progressives Congress (APC) have joined the clamour for the postponement of the ruling party’s planned February 26 national convention.

As highlighted by other faithful, the APC Youth Development and Progressive Forum said some northern governors have hijacked the APC, pushing for a convention that could ultimately destroy the ruling party.

The group made its position known on Monday at a press conference in Abuja calling on its members and other party faithful to boycott the exercise.

It said a boycott is the “only way of saving the day now as it has become apparent that the cabal of some northern governors has shredded the last vestige of democracy around them to give reign to full-blown dictatorship in the APC”.

In his address, Secretary-General, Hon. Tobias Ogbeh, said with a lingering factional crisis in over 16 states, the party is headed for destruction should it proceed with the convention.

Ogbeh added that mass defection and legal tussle awaits the party if the February 26th convention is not postponed.

The group, therefore, urged all loyal stakeholders to unite and agree on a genuine way forward, devoid of the destructive tendencies that this cabal has brought into the party

Read the full statement below:

Gentlemen of the press, thank you for joining us at such notice. Your presence here attests to your commitment to the Nigeria project and must say we are proud of the good work you are doing for the nation.

We crave your indulgence to immediately delve into the subject matter of today, which is the need to save Nigeria from spiralling out of control by addressing what is happening in the All Progressive Congress (APC). As the party that is in government, including holding the majority in the National Assembly and controlling more states of the Federation, the fate of Nigeria is tied to the stability of the APC.

As you are aware, like any other political party in this country, the APC is presently weathering its internal issues, which have been made worse by certain northern governors that have declared themselves emperors and absolute rulers that dictate what happens in the party.

The most recent dictatorial act from these overbearing governors is their imposition of a date for the National Convention of the APC, which they are touting to hold on February 26, 2022. It is a date they are tenuously holding onto even when it has been conclusively established that it flies in the face of logic, equity, and fair play. This is because these self-seeking elements have hijacked the party and are now insisting that a convention that is not in the interest of the party must take place on their appointed date.

We would not go into details of all that has been at play in the APC since these are already in the public domain. What is obvious is that these people want the party to fail to oversee the affairs of the party from their secret covens. Serious-minded people and lovers of the party cannot and will not be a party to that kangaroo national convention that they are planning to hold.

All reports available to stakeholders – political, strategic, logistics and security reports – now point to the fact that no convention can take place on February 26, 2022. Those that are peddling this phantom date have other plans as they are certainly not interested in the success of the convention they claim would be taking place on that date. In whose interest are the promoters of the February convention deriving their authority or inspiration knowing fully well that the party is not ripe now?

We want to draw the attention of Nigerians to the following:

With the lingering factional crisis in as many as 16 APC State chapters, even with the deployment of security on an industrial scale, there is no way of preventing the existing crisis from escalating. This implies that the promoters of the February National Convention are encouraging the staging of the event in the expectation of an outbreak of violence. Even when the security operatives can prevent violence at the National Convention, there is no way they can fan out to the 36 states – at least most of these states – prevent the post-convention violence that would be imported to the state chapters from the national event. The only way to prevent this is to postpone the national convention until thorny issues have been addressed.

Pundits and reputable national publications are already predicting massive defections if the National Convention goes ahead. This poses several risks. First is that there would be a contagion as the defecting APC members would snatch up tickets and roles that existing members of their new political parties have heavily invested in. That means within weeks of the convention and the resulting defection, all other promising political parties would be thrown into crisis.

Should the National Convention go ahead on February 26 as these people are planning, it would create a legal conundrum that could prove catastrophic for the nation. We do not want to contemplate the kind of constitutional crisis that would arise if the ruling party is thrown out of the 2023 General Elections based on its candidates being the end product of a contested convention. Nigeria, as we know it would be disrupted.

The gang of northern governors that are behind this twisted hijack of the APC need to be taught a lesson that they cannot package dictatorship in democratic garb and expect it to sell among right-thinking Nigerians. If they get away with this behaviour within the APC it is a matter of time because they give national spread to their irresponsible attitude and the entire country would then be at their mercy. This must not be allowed to happen.

After thoroughly reviewing the situation of the party and bearing in mind that the stability of Nigeria comes before party interest, the APC Youth Development and Progressive Forum hereby call on APC stakeholders and all lovers of democracy to boycott the February 26t APC National Convention. A boycott is the only way of saving the day now as it has become apparent that the cabal of some northern governors has shredded the last vestige of democracy around them to give reign to full-blown dictatorship in the APC.

In calling for this boycott, we hereby put the ruining cabal in the APC on notice that we will follow up with a legal challenge to invalidate whatever criminal outcome they procure from the event, which has already failed even before it held.

We urge all loyal stakeholders of the APC to unite and agree on a germanane way forward, devoid of the destructive tendencies that this cabal has brought into the party.

God bless Nigeria.

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