A Chieftain of the All Progressives Congress (APC) and Director-General of the Progressive Governors’ Forum (PGF), Salihu Lukman, has said failure to organise a national convention in June would spell doom for the party.
The Governor Mai Mala Buni-led APC Caretaker/Extraordinary Convention Planning Committee timeline will elapse in June when a national convention is expected to hold for a new crop of National Working Committee (NWC) members to emerge.
But there are speculations that the Committee’s timeline would be extended for the second time, while the convention would be shifted.
In a statement on Monday in Abuja, titled: “APC’s Litmus Tests”, Lukman said the Caretaker Committee should not abuse President Muhammadu Buhari’s confidence by delaying the convention.
“Failure to organise a National Convention in June 2021, will simply mean that the Caretaker Committee is not interested in protecting the electoral viability of the party.
“There should be no debate on whether the National Convention of APC should hold in June or not.
“What is debatable are the issues that will emerge in the National Convention, which should include the election of leaders and amendment to provisions of the constitution to make it more compelling for meetings of organs of the party to hold as required.
“Even if it is able to complete the assignment, processes of internal negotiation to produce leaders of the party, the character and capacity of the new leadership, as well as the scope of membership participation during Congresses and National Convention, will be determining factors of whether the party is conforming to both democratic principles and progressive ideals.
“APC must emerge as a dynamic party, action-oriented, based on which it is able to engender improvements in the lives of Nigerians.
“APC is the only party where contestation is taking place and leaders recognise the challenges facing the party.
“If democracy is about contestation, with all its problems, APC represent the hope for a democratic Nigeria.
“Somehow, the reality is that in terms of convening meetings of organs of the party, for more than nine months, the Caretaker Committee has not convened any meeting of any organ of the APC apart from the emergency NEC meeting of December 8, 2020.
“Sadly, even the 13-member Caretaker Committee is hardly meeting. For that to become reality, APC must pass all its litmus tests.
“A strong pillar, which is the catalysing element for the party to be able to pass all its litmus tests is the liberal leadership of President Buhari, based on which he doesn’t interfere in the management of the party,” he said.